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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Governor wants $31 million more for child protection after child deaths



In an effort to repair his child welfare track record, Gov. Rick Scott announced Tuesday in Miami that he is steering $31 million in additional money to child protection efforts, a move aimed at reducing caseloads and increasing oversight of vulnerable children in Florida.

The announcement comes in the wake of dozens of child deaths from abuse and neglect in the past year, and amid calls for reform of the Department of Children & Families from the non-profit Casey Family Foundation and Democrats in the Legislature.

“While DCF has made significant changes to protect children, we still have much to do to protect the most vulnerable among us,’’ the governor said in a statement on Monday. "Even one child death is a death too many."

The governor will also announce that he will steer an additional $8 million to sheriff's offices to investigate child abuse complaints, a turnabout for the governor who recommended a $17 million reduction in the grants to sheriffs for child protective efforts in his 2013-14 budget proposal. Story here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, January 14, 2014 9:53am]


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