John Thrasher irked by Mike Fasano's budget raid on 1st DCA
"You don't reward bad behavior," says Sen. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, who chairs a Senate budget panel overseeing the court system.
So in this extraordinarily tight budget year, Fasano wants to punish the judges who pushed for the so-called Taj Mahal courthouse by stripping $590,000 from the budget of the First District Court of Appeal and parcel out the money to the four other DCAs for various improvements. "Those judges foolishly and shamelessly spent taxpayers' money," Fasano said at a hearing Monday.
Republican Sen. John Thrasher of St. Augustine, who represents Nassau and Duval counties that are part of the First DCA, strongly objected. "I certainly don't want to do this at the expense of access to the courts by my constituents," Thrasher said. "I do object." But Fasano's position carried the day, and the cut will be in the courts budget that goes to the full Senate Budget Committee.