Tampa Bay Times Editorial
Friday, December 6, 2013 6:13pm
Gov. Rick Scott’s 2010 campaign promise to create jobs was compelling to many voters because of its simplicity: 700,000 new jobs in seven years. But three years into Scott’s tenure, an analysis from the Tampa Bay Times and Miami Herald reveals he has been more successful winning promises for jobs some future day in return for tax breaks than actually creating jobs. Just a tiny fraction of the new jobs Scott boasts about have materialized, while exponentially more private sector jobs have been lost. The governor’s never-ending self-promotion campaign does not reflect Florida’s economic reality.
The facts reflect the complexity of the economy and the error in the governor’s obsession on one narrow approach to improve it. Scott always makes time for another ribbon-cutting announcement, another call to an out-of-state CEO, or another appearance on conservative news outlets to tout his jobs efforts. But he fails to pay close attention to public schools, aggressively push for expanding health care access to uninsured Floridians, address the rising cost of utilities and property insurance, or show any interest in protecting the environment. Employers need more than a future tax break to see a future in expanding here. They also want a state that invests in its people, its public institutions and its long-term future.