Governor Rick Scott furious at fellow republicans

Gov: Jobs in jeopardy if politicians get their way
Posted at 6:25 PM, Feb 09, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-09 18:25:17-05

In a one-on-one interview with ABC Action News, the Governor went on the record about his taxpayer incentives to companies, a program now in danger of being dismantled.

"I think they have completely forgotten who they represent," said Governor Scott.

The Governor is fighting back against  lawmakers who are threatening to defund Enterprise Florida, the state agency investing tax-payer dollars into companies, in exchange for new jobs.

"How could you not want everybody you live around having a job. Who in their right mind would say I've got a job so I'm not going to worry about your job."

RELATED: Escalating war of words over tax dollars handed out to companies in exchange for jobs

Enterprise and Visit Florida are both now in danger of being eliminated.

House Speaker Richard Corcoran is leading the charge-- saying it's wrong for the state to use tax payer dollars to pad the pockets of companies.

The governor claims the economic incentives are essential because Florida is competing with 49 other states who all play the same game.

"In your bank account you might get a guarantee return and you get one two or percent, in this we get five times our money back and it's your tax money," says the Governor.

But a new report from the legislature challenges the Governor's claims.

It examined the incentive programs for three years and found 45 percent of the projects were terminated because the companies failed to deliver jobs. It also found those projects were supposed to create nearly 13 thousand jobs, investing $195 million. Instead, the report concludes the program only delivered 213 jobs and generated just $2.7 million.

"We don't put the money out unless the jobs are created...So would I like every company that we try to do transaction with to create jobs, yeah... But if you don't pay for the job creation how is that a failure, that means it works," says Governor Scott.

There's also the question of transparency. Some of the details of these deals are hidden from the public.

The state citing "Trade Secrets," The Governor admits there's room for improvement, but says killing the incentives will kill jobs.