2012-01-18 "Fla. Legislation: More Privatization and Keep It From the Public; Bill would allow more privatization of correctional facilities, revises privatization of agency functions requirements"
One piece of legislation, SPB 7172, would allow for the privatization of correctional facilities over a large area of southern Florida, while another, SPB 7170, would allow for the secret privatization of some state functions.
The Orlando Sentinel reports [http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/news_politics/2012/01/senate-to-move-ahead-with-prison-privatization-plan.html]:
The Senate Rules Committee, chaired by Sen. John Thrasher, R-St. Augustine, gave the go ahead for the Senate to take up legislation that would privatize correctional facilities in an 18-county South Florida region and also a bill that revises requirements for the privatization process. The second piece of legislation would drop a requirement that departments looking at privatization create a business case for privatization prior to the Legislature making the decision.
Florida Today notes [http://www.floridatoday.com/article/20120118/NEWS01/301180033/Bill-would-OK-secret-privatization-outsourcing-Florida-agency-functions]:
The Senate rules committee will take up the bill (PCB 7170) at today’s afternoon meeting. The bill essentially means that an agency would not have to report its privatization of a program or service until after the contract is signed.
Open government advocates say the bill would keep the public in the dark about the costs of outsourcing government services. But proponents counter that the measure requires any privatization deal to first offer “a substantial savings” to the state.