Scott on civil rights, pill mills and insurance - scribbles
Scribbles from Gov. Rick Scott's press conference this afternoon:
1.) Asked to respond to criticism that Scott and the clemency board rushed a decision to slow down the restoration of civil rights, Scott said it was their decision: "It's the clemency board's decision to decide what these are. We listen to public comment and it's something that we'll always be reviewing to make sure that we're fair to the citizens of this state, but I'm very comfortable that the rules that we put out are right."
But are the rules fair to felons who have completed their sentences?
"If you are a convicted felon, part of what you did is you lost your rights," Scott said. "There ought to be a process if you're going to get those rights back. And I think it's fair to the rest of the citizens in the state and they'll see a process that they know will work."
2.) Scott said his office is working on an insurance bill that will address how long a rate payer can file a claim, address the sinkhole issue and reduce the size of Citizens.
"We've got to look at all the things we can do to drive down either the existing cost of property insurance or the growth rate. One or the other, hopefully both," Scott said.
3.) Scott gave no indication that he'll let a Department of Health contract proceed despite an administrative law judge decision Tuesday that cleared up a dispute between two companies hoping to run the database. Asked twice about his plans for the contract, Scott said he would work with the Legislature to address the problem with over-prescribing drugs in Florida.
Scott repeated his concern a database with Floridians' health information could be breached and exploited. He also said he was not interested in companies initially paying for the costs of the database..
"I don't want to be participating in things that only get funded for a very short period of time and then the expectation is the state is going to pick up the funding," Scott said. "We're going to work with the Legislature to find the right approach."
4.) Scott opened the press conference still on a high from his State of the State "talk" last night. "I hope everybody enjoyed the talk last night, my first one hopefully of many. Yesterday was a pretty exciting day for me. I've never done that before."
5.) The much-anticipated high-speed rail study was released today and showed the train would have an operating surplus. Scott was shrugged it off.
"I had been briefed on their ridership study and I looked at other ridership studies and I'm still very comfortable with the decision I made that I don't want the taxpayers of the state on the hook for the cost overruns of building it, the operating costs or giving the money back if it's shut down."