Florida chief financial officer Alex Sink is calling on Washington to release up to $200 million in federal stimulus funding that Florida has been counting on to create thousands of short-term jobs.
"While other states are starting to see recovery from the recession, here in Florida we continue to face a growing economic and employment crisis," Sink wrote in a letter sent Tuesday to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius.
As the St. Petersburg Times wrote last week, Florida has lined up 900 projects that could result in nearly 10,600 short-term jobs, but is still waiting on funding. Under the Back to Work program, stimulus funds would pay for up to 95 percent of salary and training costs for new hires if employers agree to keep those jobs until at least September.
The program was supposed to start Feb. 1. So far, Florida has received only $1.7 million for a small pilot program, while California has received $195 million and New York has received $191 million.