Once again, Florida is showing what effective Republican leadership looks like

In Governor DeSantis’s budget message Thursday, he made clear a top priority is to keep the state of Florida open for businesses to continue operating and students to attend school in person if they choose, while protecting our most vulnerable residents by prioritizing them receiving the vaccine.

The Governor announced that his recommended budget is $96.6 billion, with total reserves at $6.6 billion — which is more than 6 percent of the total recommended budget. This puts the state in a strong position of available resources for unforeseen expenditures related to the COVID-19 pandemic and the 2021 hurricane season. This is quite an accomplishment after a year of dealing with the pandemic and a credit to the foresight of keeping the state open and spending restrained. It’s tragic what other states have done to their economies and their people.

“The cornerstone of my mission has been to protect our most vulnerable residents and put Florida’s Seniors First, while ensuring that every Floridian can go to school, go to work, and provide for themselves and their families,” Governor DeSantis said. “Because of this approach, Florida has been an exception to many of the economic struggles we are seeing in other states.”

Governor DeSantis’ budget also continues his commitment to reducing Floridians’ tax burden. The budget proposes to cut taxes of $65 million. Florida’s per capita state tax burden of $1,917 is currently the fourth lowest among all states, and Governor DeSantis believes in keeping taxes low to help Florida’s future generations.

Governor DeSantis is delivering freedom for businesses and employees, for families and students, protection for those most in need, maintaining a healthy budget to fund schools, environmental protection, transportation and the rest of state operations — all accomplished while still giving Floridians a tax break.

Yes, this is what effective Republican leadership looks like.

Read more here: http://www.floridaleadsbudget.com/web%20forms/BudgetMain.aspx

Unfortunately, per the usual arrangement, the media is taking talking points directly from Democrats in ongoing attempts to smear Florida’s successful efforts at getting out the COVID-19 vaccine to our most vulnerable populations. In this case, it was President Biden’s new press secretary disingenuously attacking Florida by claiming the state had only distributed 50 percent of the vaccines it holds.

Naturally, media ran with it. But Governor DeSantis pointed out the next day that many of those unused doses have been purposely kept in reserve for the necessary second round of doses needed to create the full regimen needed. The FDA guidelines have been for two doses as that is where the high effectiveness comes from. Shouldn’t all states be doing that? There is a window in which the second shot needs to be administered.

“Florida is averaging more than 300,000 first doses per week but we are not going to divert away from our seniors,” DeSantis said. “We are committed to ensuring our seniors are the priority and get their second dose, and if the White House is suggesting that we shouldn’t be doing that, I don’t think that’s a good suggestion.”

The Governor’s office also shared these CDC comparables of vaccinations per 100,000 people from the 10 largest states, since the White House claims to like facts and data so much.

  1. Florida – 7,193
  2. New York – 7,019
  3. Michigan – 6,962
  4. Texas – 6,081
  5. North Carolina – 6,068
  6. Pennsylvania – 5,816
  7. Georgia – 5,689
  8. California – 5,568
  9. Ohio – 5,536
  10. Illinois – 5,517

The full CDC numbers are here: https://covid.cdc.gov/covid-data-tracker/#vaccinations

Also, per our usual arrangement, Governor DeSantis continues to be leader in battling the COVID-19 scourge — such as the CDC just coming out with guidelines saying that schools should re-open with precautions as in-person learning is essential for children, exactly what Governor DeSantis has been saying since last Spring.

And under the Governor, Florida has developed perhaps the most robust and innovative infrastructure for getting vaccines to residents, including public-private partnerships with hundreds of Publix locations, plus state-run locations and, of course, health care facilities.


Florida Update

COVID-19 Vaccinations

More than one million Florida seniors have received the COVID-19 vaccination, Governor Ron DeSantis announced this week. Florida continues to lead the nation in vaccinations for seniors under the Governor’s Seniors First initiative.

“Florida is full speed ahead with our Seniors First strategy and it is working,” Governor DeSantis said. “The state’s reporting now shows that we have vaccinated more than one million seniors, which accounts for nearly 70% of Florida’s total vaccinations to date and is leading the nation in this all-important effort.”

In addition to more than one million seniors vaccinated, the state is on track to have offered the COVID-19 vaccine to every resident and staff member in Florida’s nearly 700 nursing homes and over 3,000 assisted living facilities by the end of the month.

The Governor made that announcement during a visit to River Garden Hebrew House for the Aged in Jacksonville, where he was joined by Emmett Reed, Executive Director of the Florida Health Care Association, and Steve Bahmer, President and CEO of LeadingAge Florida.

Watch the event here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PLyoARwCnAQ&feature=youtu.be

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/01/26/florida-surpasses-1-million-seniors-vaccinated/

Check the official updated statistics here: http://ww11.doh.state.fl.us/comm/_partners/covid19_report_archive/vaccine/vaccine_report_latest.pdf


Ashley Moody Update

Attorney General Ashley Moody is joining Uber in a Super Bowl-timed campaign to educate drivers on human trafficking prevention ahead of the biggest annual sporting event, this year being held in Tampa.

Moody and Uber are partnering to release an educational video for the thousands of drivers and passengers expected around the game, which is less than two weeks away and includes the Tampa Bay Bucs. The educational video gives an understanding of what human trafficking is, and teaches how to spot it and what to do.

“Hosting the Super Bowl in Florida for the second year in a row is a huge win for our state’s economy and tourism, Moody said. “But as we learned from Super Bowl LIV, traffickers will look to exploit this event to advance illegal enterprises at the expense of innocent victims.”

Read more: https://floridapolitics.com/archives/398425-ashley-moody-again-joins-uber-in-human-trafficking-prevention-campaign-ahead-of-super-bowl-lv


Jimmy Patronis Update

Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis urged the Legislature and municipalities to “Back the Blue” during a speech Tuesday at the 2021 Florida Sheriffs Association Winter Conference at the Sawgrass Marriott in Ponte Vedra Beach.

Patronis specifically asked the law enforcement organization for their support of Governor Ron DeSantis’ Combating Violence, Disorder, Looting and Law Enforcement Protection Act. “I vow to fight against anything that would defund or hurt police,” he said.

The Governor’s proposal is aimed at cracking down on protesters with new felonies for when property is damaged, or people injured as a result of protests involving seven or more people.

Read more at: https://www.jacksonville.com/story/news/state/2021/01/26/florida-cfo-jimmy-patronis-backs-police-funding-and-protesters-bill/4253991001/


Florida keeps attracting great businesses, as the state landed a new $300 million headquarters for a company that will produce the first business jet that can fly faster than the speed of sound — the result of strong leadership from Governor DeSantis and Florida GOP leaders.

The supersonic aircraft company Aerion broke ground on its new global headquarters in Melbourne, where it plans to produce the world’s first business jet that can fly faster than the speed of sound — an indication that a new era of travel at speeds above Mach 1 is getting closer.

As part of the $300 million investment into the 110-acre Aerion Park, the company plans to produce upward of 300 aircraft over the next decade. “We are building the future of mobility — a future where humanity can travel between any two points on our planet in three hours or less,” Aerion CEO Tom Vice said.

And they’re doing it in Florida.

Read more here: https://www.foxbusiness.com/lifestyle/company-behind-supersonic-private-jet-breaks-ground-300m-florida-headquarters


Governor DeSantis flew Florida’s flags at half-staff Wednesday to honor Holocaust Remembrance Day and the liberation of Auschwitz. We remember the innocent lives taken, the victims, and those who risked their lives in WWII. Florida will NEVER tolerate anti-Semitism.



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