TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Open government and ethics advocacy groups are urging Gov. Rick Scott and Florida legislative leaders to retain and make public a secure budget website developed at taxpayer expense.

The media-backed First Amendment Foundation and a group called Integrity Florida made the appeal Friday in a conference call with reporters.

They say the state will be wasting about $5 million that has already been spent if a contract for the website that's set to expire Dec. 31 is not renewed.

Integrity Florida executive director Dan Krassner says that's what may happen because Scott's office has declined to take the site over from the Florida Senate although lawmakers appropriated funding for the transfer.

A Scott spokeswoman did not immediately return a call seeking comment. The Senate's top lawyer is reviewing the matter.