Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Pasco commissioners reject Sheriff Bob White's budget settlement

DADE CITY — On Monday, Pasco Sheriff Bob White proposed a last-minute settlement with commissioners: He'd cut his budget request from $4 million to $3 million if commissioners agreed to fund 28 new deputies.

On Tuesday, commissioners said: Thanks, but no thanks.

"I honestly don't see this as a settlement," said Commissioner Henry Wilson.

"From $4 million to $3 million is not a serious settlement," agreed Chairwoman Ann Hildebrand.

On to Tallahassee.

County officials and the Sheriff's Office square off Monday at the first state hearing on White's budget appeal.

Staff for Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet will hear presentations from both sides and later come up with a recommendation. Scott and Cabinet members will vote on the matter March 9.

Commissioners kept White's funding for this year flat at $85.5 million but White wanted another $4 million, primarily to cover the cost of 28 new deputies for Holiday and Embassy Hills.

White put forth his offer on Monday after reading a Sunday story in the St. Petersburg Times that officials said Commissioner Pat Mulieri had offered White half the requested deputies and he refused.

White did not reject that offer in a public meeting, and his spokesman said he'd never received any serious offers. Though Mulieri told the Times last week that she did not recall White rejecting the offer of 14 deputies, she said at Tuesday's meeting that he did.

"I asked him about 14 deputies, and he said it wouldn't work," she said. She added, however, that in light of the recent deaths of law enforcement officers, she worried about back-up.

She said the two sides needed to lay out a funding plan for future years. "Somehow we've got to work together," she said.

White's letter to commissioners this week said he'd drop his request for funding for the non-deputy positions. That includes four communications officers, a court bailiff, a school resource officer and an investigative aide.

"If I could get the funding for the 28 deputies starting April 1, that would be halfway through the budget year which would cut my request significantly," he wrote.

Commissioners said that did not represent a real settlement, because those are recurring costs.

"This is not a reduction," said Commissioner Ted Schrader. "It's just basically making some adjustments for the fiscal year."

"I'm really surprised this is even going forward," said Commissioner Jack Mariano, noting that the county next year begins paying for the 24 deputies White hired in 2009 with a three-year federal grant.

White's budget appeal is already having reverberations for the 2012 election. Wilson said at the meeting that he'd gotten a phone call from Roger Fortney, a retired Pasco deputy who has filed to run for sheriff next year.

Wilson said Fortney told him he was reviewing a way to beef up enforcement without asking for more money.

Jodie Tillman can be reached at or (727) 869-6247.

Pasco commissioners reject Sheriff Bob White's budget settlement 02/08/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 8, 2011 8:55pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. This Tampa Bay Lightning wing rides the newest wave of fan interaction

    Lightning Strikes

    TAMPA — There are photos of Lightning fan Shaun Egger as a toddler at center ice at the then-Thunderome, aka Tropicana Field. He's played in the Lightning's high school hockey league for Palm Harbor University. But his closest personal encounter with players had been waving through a crowd after a training camp …

    Tampa Bay Lightning player J.T. Brown wears his anti UV glasses as he talks over the headset with a hockey fan while they play against each other on line in an XBOX NHL video game in Brown's game room at his home in south Tampa. The fan chose to be the Washington Capitals and Brown, of course, was the Tampa Bay Lightning. Brown interacts with fans through video game systems as he streams the games live on Twitch with plans for the proceeds to go to charity.
  2. Video: Rays Souza on that oh-so-bad dive, and reaction from Twins fans


    What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking when he made that oh-so-bad dive for a ball in the seventh inning Friday? Well, we'll let him tell you ...

  3. What was Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. thinking on that comically bad dive?


    What could Rays RF Steven Souza Jr. been thinking in the seventh inning Friday when he dove for a ball and came up yards short?

    Actually, he insisted after all the laughing, teasing and standing ovation from the Twins fans was done, it was a matter of self-preservation.

  4. Judge tosses life sentences for D.C. sniper Lee Boyd Malvo


    McLEAN, Va. — A federal judge on Friday tossed out two life sentences for one of Virginia's most notorious criminals, sniper Lee Boyd Malvo, and ordered Virginia courts to hold new sentencing hearings.

    A federal judge has tossed out two life sentences for D.C. sniper shooter Lee Boyd Malvo. [Associated Press, 2004]
  5. Zbigniew Brzezinski, President Carter's national security adviser, dies


    Zbigniew Brzezinski, the hawkish strategic theorist who was national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter in the tumultuous years of the Iran hostage crisis and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in the late 1970s, died on Friday at a hospital in Virginia. He was 89.

    Zbigniew Brzezinski, former national security adviser to President Jimmy Carter, participates in Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on Capitol Hill on March 5, 2009, in Washington, D.C. [Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images]