Scott Wants More Funding For FDLE Crime Labs

November 19, 2015

Gov. Rick Scott on Wednesday said he will propose spending $8.5 million to upgrade Florida Department of Law Enforcement crime labs, as the state grapples with a massive backlog of untested rape kits.

Scott said in a news release the money would go to lab equipment, improvements to a DNA database and crime-scene vehicles.

“The $8.5 million investment we are announcing today is critical to giving innocent victims the answers they rightfully deserve, including the thousands of women who have been victims to absolutely horrific, violent crimes,” Scott said in a prepared statement.

The issue has drawn heavy attention since Attorney General Pam Bondi held a news conference in September and disclosed that thousands of rape kits were untested across the state. Bondi called for more funding for crime labs, and lawmakers also have proposed bills aimed at speeding up the testing of evidence in sexual-assault cases.

Bondi issued a statement Wednesday thanking Scott for the funding proposal, which will be considered during the 2016 legislative session. “Sexual assault is a horrific crime that has profound effects on its victims, and processing these kits will unbind key DNA evidence linked to unsolved crimes in Florida and beyond,” she said.


2 Responses to “Scott Wants More Funding For FDLE Crime Labs”

  1. Ed on November 20th, 2015 12:39 pm

    This makes it sound like the Governor’s Office has discovered some previously unknown problem and is swooping in to save the day. That couldn’t be farther from the truth. FDLE is most recognized for the various crime lab services it offers. FDLE holds it’s lab personnel to high standards in both performance and educational requirements. The standards are high, the pay is embarrassingly low. There is a huge retention problem at FDLE due to this. New employees hire in and generally leave after their contract is up for the same job at other labs where the starting pay is easily 20 to 30k more. FDLE and the governor are quite aware this problem exist. Here’s an easy fix……Improve retention of professional experienced staff by paying them a wage that is consistent with other labs throughout the US. Spend less time training new people and more time working cases. No brainer!

  2. Mike on November 20th, 2015 6:03 am

    Maybe he should quit giving away money to corporations.

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