Amendment 8: Religious Funding - WMBB News 13 - The Panhandle's News Leader

Amendment 8: Religious Funding

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Bay County, Fla. -

For Dr. Delbert Summey, a day at work means delivering help to those in need. The St. Andrew Community Medical Center offers medical care to Bay County residents; but without the necessary funding they're facing a new challenge.

"We're going to have to find ways to replace that funding." Summey says. At one point, the organization received money from the Panama City and Bay County Commissions, but due to their own budget cuts, they could no longer support them.

However, supporters say a new constitutional amendment on the November ballot would allow money to flow from the state's treasury down to faith based organizations.

"As a 501c3 organization, we can neither support nor oppose official amendments. But if it were to offer opportunities for additional public funding, we would certainly look into that." Summey commented.

Although state funding may be lucrative for some, others say they aren't willing to risk their beliefs for cash. "No thanks, I've got enough to keep me going here." Rev. Billy Fox says---- he's with the Panama City Rescue Mission, a Christian Ministry which offers services to people willing to listen.

"We don't force any body to do anything; they just have to be there." If funding was tied into restrictions, Rev. Fox says it's a comprise the mission is not willing to make.

"They say that's not going to happen, but when you start really reading the fine print, you'll never see ‘and this will not happen'. So, we don't want to break rules, so we rather just not be under those rules."

"If we can find public funding, that allows us to minister within our mission statement; we're going to pursue that." Summey adds.

Amendment 8 is sponsored by the Florida legislature. A campaign against the measure is led by the ‘Vote No on 8' committee.

In order for any amendment to be passed there must be a super majority with 60% of the vote.

For a break down on other amendments visit: