With Florida’s tax code more business-friendly in recent years, economic incentives and tax breaks have flowed to companies and industries currently under fire for their roles in America’s gun violence, reported the Miami Herald.
Meanwhile, the state has cut funding for mental healthcare and school safety programs, two areas at the forefront of the national gun-control debate.
While it has become more difficult and expensive to access mental healthcare in Florida, it is getting easier and cheaper to obtain high-powered weapons. Last year, the Legislature cut the cost of obtaining a weapons license by $5, and a string of gun-friendly measures has boosted the number of concealed firearms carriers past one million.
Nationally, Florida ranks 49th in mental health funding, and first in gun ownership, reported the Herald. The state has been a trailblazer in providing lucrative tax incentives to a smorgasbord of companies in return for promises to create jobs.
In 2012, a tough budget year when the Legislature cut funding for school safety by $1.8 million and Gov. Rick Scott vetoed $5.7 million for mental health programs, lawmakers were able to find more than $10 million for economic incentives that went to violent film productions, bloody video games and gun manufacturers.
In South Florida, that meant millions of fewer dollars for mentally ill prisoners, while movie-maker Michael Bay received $4.2 million in tax breaks to produce Pain & Gain, an action film about South Beach bodybuilders who become violent criminals, reported the Herald.
To read more: http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/01/19/3189762/gun-makers-violent-film-and-video.html#storylink=cpy