Securing Government Efficiency for Florida’s Future

The Governor’s total recommendation in the Securing Florida’s Future budget for Fiscal Year 2018-19 is $87.4 billion. The General Revenue portion is $32.2 billion. The General Revenue funds available for the Fiscal Year 2018-19 budget year increased $1.3 billion from the previous Fiscal Year, a four percent increase. Florida’s total reserves are $5 billion. This increase is a continued indication that Florida’s economy is strong.

Budget Savings

The Securing Florida’s Future budget recommends more than $144 million in savings as a result of state agencies’ continued efforts to become more efficient and save tax dollars.

Contract and Lease Renegotiations

Savings resulting from contract and lease renegotiations have generated a statewide savings of more than $58 million since Fiscal Year 2012-13. This includes savings in the Securing Florida’s Future budget of $6 million. Savings will continue to grow as additional contracts are identified and renegotiated to provide the best return on investment for Florida families.

Reduction in Debt Service

Because Florida continues to pay off debt, Florida taxpayers are saving money. The Securing Florida’s Future budget realizes a savings of $76 million due to reduced debt service obligations and State Board of Administration fees associated with the issuance of bonds for public schools, Florida colleges, state universities, and state facilities.

Florida has paid down $9 billion in debt under Governor Scott’s leadership including $5.5 billion in outstanding bond debt, as well as the $3.5 billion loan taken out in 2009, before the Governor took office, for the unemployment compensation program. This has resulted in an approximately 28 percent reduction in outstanding debt since Governor Scott took office. Florida has significantly less debt per capita than New York, Illinois and California. In fact, California and Illinois have more than double the debt per capita of Florida and New York has triple the debt per capita. Over the last seven Fiscal Years, refinancing activity has generated gross debt service savings of approximately $2.6 billion. Refunding transactions executed over that period total approximately $13.1 billion – lowering the interest rate on nearly 58 percent of Florida’s total outstanding debt. With historically low interest rates and Florida’s AAA credit ratings, Florida has saved an additional $177.1 million in gross debt service thus far in Fiscal Year 2017-18. The state has maintained its AAA credit ratings.

State Employee Health Coverage Savings

The Securing Florida’s Future budget saves taxpayers more than $21 million by proposing that all employees pay equally for health insurance coverage - $50 per month for individual coverage and $180 per month for family coverage. This reduces employer contribution for health insurance coverage for employees in Senior Management Service and Selected Exempt Service systems. The Governor has proposed this plan every year since taking office.

Formulary Management

The Securing Florida’s Future budget implements a new model for managing Florida’s employee health insurance prescription drug program. This model improves efficiency in the prescription drug program, saving the state approximately $54 million annually and has been successfully implemented in twelve other states and six local government entities across the country.

Keeping Florida’s State Pension Plan Strong

For the past five years, Florida has fully funded both the normal cost and the unfunded actuarial liability associated with the Florida Retirement System Pension Plan. At the recommendation of Milliman, Florida’s independent actuary, Governor Scott’s Securing Florida’s Future budget fully funds both the normal cost and the unfunded actuarial liability to make sure Florida continues to have one of the strongest and best funded pension plans of the largest states in the nation.