RPOF Newsletter

Governor’s Budget Puts Freedom First

Governor DeSantis released his Freedom First Budget proposal today, which totals $99.7 billion, with reserves exceeding $15 billion. That puts the budget at $2 billion less than last year’s budget.

The Freedom First Budget focuses on preserving freedom and prosperity for Floridians with record funding for education, environmental resources and law enforcement. The budget also protects freedom and liberty by once again rejecting mandates and lockdowns.

“In Florida, we have put Freedom First – protecting Floridians’ freedom to earn a living, to operate businesses and to choose educational options tailored for their children,” Governor DeSantis said. “As a result of our commitment to freedom, Florida’s economy continues to thrive and Floridians are better able to provide for their families…This budget puts Floridians and their freedoms first, keeps taxes low, and addresses key priorities – all while maintaining record budget reserves.”

Economic Freedom

The Governor’s budget gives Floridians the freedom to use their incomes to provide for their families, not grow government. The Freedom First budget recommends tax holidays, including a Fuel Tax Holiday to provide a reprieve from increasing gas prices and save Florida Families over $1 billion.

Florida’s economy has grown faster than the nation as a result of smart investments and policies that kept Florida open and businesses operating. Investments in rural communities and the tourism industry give Florida communities the freedom to elevate their regions for decades to come. So the Freedom First Budget includes:

  • $105 million, an increase of $100 million over the current year, for the Rural Infrastructure Fund to support local rural infrastructure projects such as roads, storm, wastewater systems, and internet access for rural communities.
  • $100 million for the Florida Job Growth Grant Fund to support projects that create workforce training opportunities and invest in critical infrastructure.
  • $50 million in recurring funding for Visit Florida, Florida’s tourism marketing agency.

Investments in highways, bridges and ports give Floridians the freedom to open and operate businesses, knowing that their goods will swiftly travel through our ports and on our roads. The budget provides $9.27 billion for the State Transportation Work Program.

The Freedom First Budget invests $25 million to maintain and restore the Freedom Tower, to ensure that the Freedom Tower continues to be a beacon of freedom and serve as a symbol of the democratic values we hold dear.

Education Freedom and Teacher Support

The Governor believes that children have a right to learn in positive learning environments and parental rights need to be preserved in making educational decisions for their children. Governor DeSantis is proposing record funding for K-12 education and prioritizes teachers and students. Included in the Freedom First Budget are:

  • A second round of $1,000 bonus checks for approximately 179,000 teachers and principals in Florida. He is also proposing $600 million – a $50 million budget increase over the past year – for teacher pay, continuing Florida’s efforts to reach a minimum teacher salary of $47,500.
  • An increase in per-student funding to raise this year’s budget to $8,000 per student. This will represent the highest amount of per-student funding in Florida’s history.
  • $421 million for school safety and mental health initiatives.
    To fully eliminate the Florida Standards Assessment and implement progress monitoring in its place, Governor DeSantis is proposing $15.5 million in recurring funding to provide progress monitoring tools to schools.
  • $500,000 to expand access to the Florida Civics and Debate Initiative into every school.
  • To make Florida the number one state for Workforce Education by 2030, $534 million in funding to support workforce education programs is included in the proposed budget.

For Those Who Protect Our Freedom

Florida supports first responders and service members who protect our freedom. Due to the hard work of Florida’s law enforcement officers, our crime rate decreased last year, marking the 50th consecutive year the state has seen a drop in its crime rate.

While other states want to defund the police, in Florida, our Freedom First Budget backs the blue, and includes:

  • $226.7 million to provide salary increases for those working in public safety – including 25% raises for all veteran state sworn law enforcement and 20% salary increases for entry-level state sworn law enforcement.
  • A $5,000 signing bonus for every recruit who is new to the law enforcement profession in Florida once they complete their training and they officially become a law enforcement officer.
  • Providing the State Officer Certification Exam free of charge to law enforcement officers relocating to Florida and covering the cost of any necessary equivalent training programs for relocating officers, up to $1,000 per officer.
  • Creating a law enforcement academy scholarship program to cover the cost of enrollment for men and women seeking to serve their state and communities through police work.

Florida is also committed to supporting those who serve. Our National Guard has been called upon time and time again during times of emergency, and we must ensure they are ready to serve Floridians. Governor DeSantis is proposing more than $100 million for our National Guard.
The Freedom First Budget also includes $8 million to implement a program to protect against harms from illegal immigration, and $2.4 million in E-Verify enforcement.

Environmental Protection

Florida’s natural resources are the foundation of our state’s communities. The environment drives tourism, affects property values, anchors many local economies and is central to our quality of life. The Freedom First Budget reaffirms Governor DeSantis’ commitment by recommending more than $4.4 billion to protect our environment and natural resources.

The Freedom First Budget proposes more than $980 million to restore the Everglades, fight Red Tide and protect Florida’s water resources. This would bring Florida’s four-year investment to $3 billion, surpassing our goal of $2.5 billion and doubling the investment of the previous four years. The budget also invests over $550 million to increase the resiliency of Florida’s coastal and inland communities and more than $151.7 million to protect our prized properties and waters in Florida.

Health Care Support

The COVID-19 pandemic has continued to have unforeseen consequences for workers. Florida is placing freedom above heavy-handed vaccination mandates and Faucism.

To support health care freedom and protect Floridians as they make their own health care choices, the Freedom First Budget includes:

  • More than $200 million in funding to support direct care workers with pay raises.
  • $100 million – a $37 million increase – for cancer research.
  • $15 million, an increase of $10 million over the current year, in funding for Alzheimer’s Disease research to enhance diagnosis and prevention strategies for those Floridians impacted by this disease.
  • $188.6 million in behavioral health initiatives including mental health and substance abuse services to ensure Floridians get the help that they need.
  • $133 million to provide services to those served by the child welfare system, including foster parent support and adoption subsidies, including.

Read full budget here: http://www.floridaleadsbudget.com/PDFLoader.htm?file=OverView.pdf

Republicans lead on flood resiliency

Governor DeSantis and Republican legislative leaders are proactively pursuing a bold agenda on sea-level rise with the creation of a first-ever statewide plan to protect Florida’s coastal and inland communities.

The Florida Statewide Flooding Resilience Plan announced this week consists of a range of projects that will enhance Florida’s efforts to protect inland waterways, coastlines, shores, and coral reefs — which are invaluable natural defenses against sea-level rise and flooding.

The plan is part of Senate Bill 1954, signed by Governor DeSantis earlier this year, which ensures a coordinated approach to the resiliency of Florida’s coastal and inland regions, and provides a structure for ongoing resilience following the best science and data. This strategy will enhance the protection of inland and coastal resources that act as natural defenses against sea-level rise.

“We have done a lot to support Florida water resources and we know infrastructure for clean and strong waterways is important,” Governor DeSantis said. “We also want to fortify infrastructure to make communities across Florida more resilient. We are a low-lying state, a storm prone state, and a flood prone state.”

In the previous legislative session, Governor DeSantis worked with Speaker Chris Sprowls, President Wilton Simpson and the rest of the Legislature to create a pathway to protect Florida communities and the state’s economic livelihood. Under that legislation, Governor DeSantis is now proposing 76 projects totaling more than $270 million across Florida, which will be matched by local investments as part of a three-year plan to strengthen community-identified vulnerabilities.

“With our ‘Always Ready’ legislation signed into law and the first preliminary plan delivered today, Florida is going to be strategic, proactive and a leader among all other states in our response,” said House Speaker Chris Sprowls.”

“Strategic planning and key investments made today will have a tremendous benefit for future generations of Floridians,” said Senate President Wilton Simpson.

The current 2021-2022 budget includes $640 million — the most significant investment in the state’s history — to ensure Florida’s communities are prepared to deal with the impacts of sea-level rise, intensified storms, and flooding.

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/12/08/governor-ron-desantis-announces-first-ever-statewide-flooding-resilience-plan/

The complete list of projects is here:https://protectingfloridatogether.gov/sites/default/files/documents/RF%20statewide%20plan%20PFT[2].pdf

Governor DeSantis blasts businesses with double standard on masking

Governor DeSantis criticized businesses earlier this week for requiring staff to wear masks while patrons move about mask-free, saying that it created a symbolic “two-tiered society” where the “servant class” goes around with their faces covered while the served class does not.

“Let these folks breathe,” Governor DeSantis said. “Let them make their own decisions on this because I think it’s terribly uncomfortable that they’re in this for so many hours a day and I don’t think it’s proven to make a difference.”

The Governor has been consistent in opposing mask mandates, including those that are not equally applied, along with vaccine mandates.

“I think it’s like a two-tiered society,” DeSantis said. “They’re trying to have a servant class that has to always do all this. But yet the other class, they can lecture you about wearing masks, but then they don’t wear masks themselves. That’s wrong.”

Read more here: https://floridapolitics.com/archives/478334-let-these-folks-breathe-gov-desantis-urges-businesses-to-unmask-employees/




Governor’s plan for increasing cancer research

Governor DeSantis is recommending $100 million for cancer research and care in next year’s budget, an increase of $37 million, or nearly 60%, over prior year funding. The funding will be used to forward cancer care and research at three cancer institutes in Florida — Moffitt Cancer Center, University of Miami Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, and University of Florida Health Cancer Center.

First Lady Casey DeSantis announced Governor DeSantis’ recommendation this week at a roundtable at Moffitt.

“Florida offers some of the best cancer care and research in the nation, and I’m proud that we are proposing historic investments in our leading cancer centers,” First Lady Casey DeSantis said. “The Governor and I are committed to helping cancer patients through innovative research and high-quality care. While we increase this important funding, I also urge Floridians to go through appropriate cancer screenings. Cancer is the second-leading cause of death in our state and now is not the time to delay care.”

First Lady DeSantis was joined by Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo and representatives from the center.

“Florida’s cancer institutes are critical in providing treatment that saves the lives of patients with cancer,” said Florida Surgeon General Dr. Joseph Ladapo. “This funding will also continue supporting advancements in cancer research and treatments that can potentially lead to new cures.”

This funding will greatly benefit Florida’s three homegrown cancer centers — Moffitt, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami and UF Health Cancer Center. It will enable these institutions to recruit the best and brightest from around the world.

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/12/08/first-lady-casey-desantis-announces-100-million-proposal-for-cancer-research-and-care-in-florida/

View the full roundtable https://rumble.com/vqdy1t-first-lady-casey-desantis-announces-100-million-in-cancer-research-funding.html

Governor proposes creation of Florida State Guard

Governor DeSantis announced more than $100 million in funding proposals last week to support the Florida’s National Guard and establish the Florida State Guard, a civilian volunteer force that will assist the National Guard in state emergencies.

The Governor’s budget proposal includes:

  • $87.5 million to expand the existing readiness center in Miramar and to establish three new armories in Homestead, Gainesville and Malabar;
  • $8.9 million for existing armory maintenance;
  • $2.2 million for a new headquarters for the National Guard Counter Drug Program;
  • $5.1 million to support Florida National Guardsmen seeking higher-education degrees; and
  • $3.5 million to establish the Florida State Guard.

“We are proud of our veterans and active-duty military members and proud of what our communities do to support them,” Governor DeSantis said. “Florida is one of the most veteran friendly states and I think there are very few places that you would rather be on duty than in the state of Florida. As a veteran, I really appreciate what everyone who wears the uniform does in our state and am excited about these proposals – they will go a long way and have a meaningful impact.”

The establishment of the Florida State Guard will support emergency responses from hurricanes, natural disasters and other state emergencies. The $3.5 million to establish the Florida State Guard will enable civilians to be trained in the best emergency response techniques. Florida will now become the 23rd state with a state guard recognized by the federal government.

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/12/02/governor-ron-desantis-announces-military-budget-proposal-to-guard-floridas-future/

​​Senator Marco Rubio

Marco Rubio’s stand against Chinese slavery

Spectator World recently ran an article on Senator Marco Rubio’s unflinching stand against the Chinese Communist Party’s slave labor and genocide against the Uighurs. It came to a head when Senator Rubio wanted to amend a bill to include banning imports from Xinjiang, where the genocide is taking place. It has unanimous support in the Senate, but Majority Leader Schumer took it out on a ginned up technicality. So Rubio scotched a vote on the broader bill.

Here’s an excerpt:

Rubio notes that the Xinjiang proposal has unanimous support in the Senate and suggests that the revenue-raising complaint, the so-called blue slip objection, is applied unevenly. “It cannot mean it applies when I’m not for the policy and it doesn’t apply when I’m for it,” said Rubio last night.

Schumer has been caught flatfooted yet again — and handled it badly. Rubio is taking a stand against slave labor and genocide. The Senate majority leader would be wise not to call that “sad” or “absurd.”

Read the entire article here: https://spectatorworld.com/newsletter/marco-rubios-stand-against-chinese-slavery/









REMEMBER: @FloridaGOP and retweet and share. The Republican message must be spread around the state, and you are integral to making that happen.

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