TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida Gov. Rick Scott wants to spend nearly $6 million to boost the number of state agents dedicated to counterterrorism efforts.
Sparked by last year's attack on the Pulse nightclub that left 49 dead, Scott will ask legislators to include enough money in the annual budget to hire agents who will be stationed in seven regions across the state.
Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Rick Swearingen last fall first recommended hiring 46 additional agents. Legislators will consider the request during their annual session that starts in March.
Scott said he is backing the request because the state needs "specialists that are solely dedicated to identifying these terrorists and stopping them."
During the June rampage, shooter Omar Mateen pledged allegiance to the Islamic State group in telephone conversations with a 911 operator and a police negotiator.