Gov. Rick Scott has signed a new state budget for the fiscal year, which starts next month.

On Monday, Scott approved the $77 billion budget, which is the biggest Florida has ever seen. Funding will increase for public schools, universities, child protection services and the environment.

Scott signed the budget privately, which could be an indication that he's worried about angering small-government conservatives who played a critical role in electing him four years ago.

However, he's also promised to create jobs, which is a goal he said the budget will help achieve.

"Record funding for K-12, record funding for state colleges, record funding for universities, performance funding," Scott said. "For every child that finishes at one of our universities or state colleges, they're going to get a job!"

For a governor facing a rough re-election fight, the budget can be a powerful political tool. That's because packed inside are hundreds of millions of dollars worth of hometown projects, many of them left untouched by Scott's veto pen.

That's an about-face from 2011, when Scott axed a record $615 million.  But 2014 is an election year, which could explain why the governor only vetoed $69 million worth of projects.  

From $15 million for a bike trail in central Florida to $12 million for a crane in the Port of Tampa, a long list of so-called budget "turkeys" - what is normally known as "pork" in Washington DC - have gotten the green light.

He also signed off for $3 million for the Nature Coast education and tourism center in Hernando County and approved money for USF Health's Morsani College of Medicine as well as MOSI's Tech and Steam Showcase.

Scott's likely Democratic opponent, former Gov. Charlie Crist, argues it's money that would have been better spent on paying teachers more.

"The support they receive from our governor is pitiful," he said.

Rep. Alan Williams, D-Tallahassee, said most of the turkeys are pure politics.

"Now is the time to put all of the work and the governing beside and go out and campaign, and it's kind of hard to campaign if you're vetoing items that are in particular districts, particular hotbeds for votes," he said.

That could be the biggest reason the budget is so big. With more money comes more opportunities to deliver for the millions of Floridians who will be voting come this fall.

Not everyone got something out of the budget. One of Scott's vetoes was a project called "Agenda 2020," which was part of St. Petersburg's Urban Affairs strategy to help low-income residents.