Gov. Scott visits Fort Myers, talks Zika, Trump, jobs

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FORT MYERS, Fla.  — Gov. Rick Scott announced the authorization of $10 million in state funds to fight the Zika virus Friday while visiting Fort Myers.

The governor also touted Southwest Florida job growth and talked about why he won’t be at Donald Trump’s Germain Arena rally Monday.

The new state Zika funds come as the state Department of Health announced a fifth mosquito sample in Miami-Dade County has tested positive for the virus. The money will go toward mosquito surveillance, training for mosquito control technicians, enhanced laboratory capacity and the purchase of Zika prevention kits, Scott’s office said.

The move was necessary because of the federal government’s inaction, Scott said in his appearance Friday, which came on the heels of a trip to Washington, D.C. designed to spur Congressional action.

“Everyone I met with this week believes something needs to get done on Zika,” Scott said. “But, nothing has happened. While Washington continues to spend money on wasteful projects every year, they cannot seem to agree on spending for a virus that severely impacts pregnant women and their growing babies.”

The governor would gain an ally in Washington if Trump is elected president in November. Scott is the national chairman of the pro-Trump super PAC Rebuilding America Now, but he cited his position with that group as the reason why he won’t be with Trump on Monday.

Scott didn’t elaborate further, but laws forbid super PACs from working directly with campaigns, so a joint appearance could give rise to a perception that Scott and Trump are cooperating in a way that breaks the rules.

Scott spoke Friday at All Access Multimedia, a Fort Myers marketing and production company that specializes in commercials, web video and infomercials. He touted new numbers that show the unemployment rate for Fort Myers and the surrounding area has fallen to 4.7 percent, down 0.7 percent in the last year.

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