Hunting Deutsch

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Gov. Rick Scott appointed his top lawyer to head the Florida agency that oversees unemployment compensation and economic development.
 
Scott on Thursday named Jesse Panuccio, the governor's general counsel, to the post following the sudden resignation of Hunting Deutsch amid questions about jobless benefits he had received before he was hired about eight months ago.
 
Scott also appointed outgoing State Attorney Peter Antonacci of West Palm Beach to replace Panuccio as his general counsel.
 

Governor Rick Scott will have to find another Jobs Czar for the third time in less than a year, after Hunting Deutsch abruptly resigned his $140,000 job running the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

Deutsch, a former banking executive, drew controversy recently following revelations in the Florida Current that he had collected state unemployment benefits between 2009 and 2011. He was in Europe part of that time.

Department of Economic Opportunity

Florida’s unemployment rate has dropped slightly from February’s 9.4-percent to 9-percent in March. As Sascha Cordner reports, the new head of the state’s job creation efforts says the decline is proof that the Governor’s efforts are working.

March’s jobless rate was at nine percent. That’s the lowest it’s been since January 2009. Newly appointed Department of Economic Opportunity executive director Hunting Deutsch says thanks to Governor Rick Scott, there’s been tremendous progress in job creation and unemployment reduction.