RPOF Newsletter 12/03/2021

Chairman’s Message

Supporting Florida Law Enforcement

Governor DeSantis announced $400 million in new funding proposals to increase the salaries of Florida’s state law enforcement officers, correctional officers, and state special risk firefighters. The proposal for the upcoming legislative session also provides $1,000 bonuses for first responders, including law enforcement officers, paramedics, EMTs and firefighters across the state for the second year in a row.

Governor DeSantis also announced $5,000 bonuses to recruit and retain both state and local level law enforcement. The proposal will be considered during the 2022 Florida Legislative Session.

“While other states have turned their backs on law enforcement, even calling to ‘defund the police,’ in Florida we continue to support the men and women in law enforcement,” Governor DeSantis said. “I am proud to propose larger and longer-lasting measures to help our state recruit and retain the best law enforcement officers in the nation and to provide $1,000 bonuses for first responders and law enforcement officers for the second year in a row.”

Here are the details of the Governor’s proposal for state law enforcement:

  • $73 million to increase the minimum pay for entry level state law enforcement officers by 20 percent, and to increase veteran officer salaries by 25 percent.
  • $135 million to increase the base pay of Correctional Officers and Department of Juvenile Justice Officers.
  • $1.4 million to increase the salaries of state Special Risk Firefighters by up to $2,500 each.

And here are the details for local law enforcement:

  • $5,000 signing bonuses for every recruit who is new to the law enforcement profession in Florida.
  • Providing the State Officer Certification Exam free to law enforcement officers relocating to Florida and covering the cost of any necessary equivalent training programs up to $1,000 per officer.
  • $1,000 bonuses for first responders, including law enforcement officers, paramedics, EMTs, and firefighters across the state.
  • Creating law enforcement academy scholarships to cover the cost of enrollment for men and women seeking to serve their state and communities through police work. 

This proposal builds on Governor DeSantis’ plan unveiled in August to recruit and retain local law enforcement officers. Read more about those proposals here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/08/17/governor-ron-desantis-announces-new-initiatives-to-recruit-law-enforcement-officers-to-florida/

Earlier in 2021, Governor DeSantis worked with the Florida Legislature to secure $1,000 bonuses for 174,000 first responders, and signed House Bill 1, the hallmark anti-rioting legislation.

Read more: https://www.flgov.com/2021/11/29/governor-ron-desantis-proposes-sweeping-pay-increases-for-state-law-enforcement-officers-1000-bonuses-for-first-responders-and-5000-to-support-state-and-local-level-recruitment-efforts/

Governor DeSantis denounces Biden removing FARC from terrorist list

Governor DeSantis responded quickly to President Biden’s reckless decision to remove the violent communist organization FARC from the U.S. list of foreign terrorist organizations. Columbia-based FARC has committed innumerable murders, assassinations, bombings, kidnappings and more over decades to pursue socialist ends.  

“President Biden’s decision to remove the FARC from the State Department’s list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations will embolden terrorist groups throughout Latin America, empower narco-traffickers and pave the way for Castro-chavismo in Colombia,” Governor DeSantis said.

“Biden’s policy is an insult to members of the Colombian American community, many of whom fled that terrorist group’s barbaric attacks on civilians,” he said. “This is a serious mistake by the Biden administration and will hurt Floridians. With this mind, my office will ascertain what policy measures our state can take to protect our residents from a resurgent FARC and other terrorist Marxist groups.”

Read more: https://www.flgov.com/2021/11/24/governor-ron-desantis-responds-to-president-bidens-reckless-decision-to-remove-farc-from-the-list-of-foreign-terrorist-organizations/

And here: https://spacecoastdaily.com/2021/11/gov-ron-desantis-responds-to-bidens-decision-to-remove-farc-from-list-of-foreign-terrorist-organizations/



Governor DeSantis Proposes Gas Tax Relief to Save Floridians More than $1 Billion

Governor DeSantis is proposing more than $1 billion in gas tax relief for Floridians in the upcoming legislative session. This gas tax holiday will save up to $200 for the average Florida family. 

“Gas prices have been rising due to inflationary pressures from bad federal policies, so we here in Florida need to step up and provide relief to our citizens,” Governor DeSantis said. “Today, I am proposing that during session, the Florida Legislature provide more than $1 billion in gas tax relief for Florida families. This will have a positive impact on millions of Floridians.”

The Governor made the announcement at stops at Buc-ee’s in Daytona Beach and at Daily’s in Jacksonville and was joined by leaders in the gas and transportation industry. 

“This gas tax relief is going to make it right back to the customer and it will happen instantly as soon as the legislature gets it done and we are happy to be a part of it,” said Arch H. “Beaver” Applin III, President of Buc-ee’s. “This is a very business friendly state and this is probably one of our favorite places we have done business in.”

“Governor DeSantis is spot on. It’s tough right now. Keeping up with costs, costs are rising every single day and this is an incredible way to give back to everyday Floridians,” said Aubrey Edge, President and CEO of First Coast Energy. “The Governor has protected our personal freedoms, looked after the economic interests of every Floridian and made it great to have a business here in Florida.” 

“Wawa is supportive of the Governor’s leadership and this action to provide relief for consumers at the pump,” said Chris Gheysens, President & CEO of Wawa, Inc. “Given recent cost increases and supply chain challenges, this initiative will have a positive impact on Florida families.”

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/11/22/governor-ron-desantis-proposes-gas-tax-relief-to-save-floridians-more-than-1-billion/

Florida tourism is setting records

Florida’s visitation from July to September 2021 exceeded 2019’s pre-pandemic visitation over the same period. Governor DeSantis made the announcement based on Visit Florida’s estimates that show 32.5 million travelers to Florida in the third quarter of 2021. 

While tourism in other states was completely paused, Florida was the only state marketing outside its borders for seven months, seeing steady growth in visitor volume each quarter. As a result, Florida is driving the recovery of the U.S. travel industry and has cultivated a strategic advantage that will continue to attract visitors in the future.

“In 2020, the experts thought Florida’s economy would be among the most impacted in the nation because of how important tourism is to our state; instead, we are setting the pace for job creation and visitation in the U.S.,” Governor DeSantis said. “We have been able to set these records because in Florida we kept businesses open and made sure Floridians could keep working. In just fifteen months, Florida’s visitation numbers have surpassed past pre-pandemic levels, helping drive revenue, job growth, and economic activity to all 67 counties in our state.” 

Read more here: https://www.flgov.com/2021/11/23/governor-desantis-announces-florida-visitation-tops-pre-pandemic-levels/

​​Senator Marco Rubio

Val Demings Voted to Grant Amnesty to 6.5 Million Illegal Immigrants 

Senator Marco Rubio’s Democrat opponent Val Demings supported amnesty for 6.5 million illegal immigrants when she voted for Joe Biden’s radical Build Back Better socialist agenda, according to the CBO’s report of the House Democrats’ bill.

“The proposal would be the largest-ever amnesty,” the Washington Examiner reported. Demings has repeatedly voted for Democrats’ radical illegal immigration agenda, supporting illegal immigrants voting, sanctuary cities, and a pathway to citizenship for gang members and sexual abusers while she opposes the border wall and resources for border agencies.  

“Val Demings never tires of aiding illegal immigrants over Florida families. Demings’ vote for the Build Back Socialist agenda affirms her commitment to opening our borders and weakening our national security,” said Elizabeth Gregory, communications director for Marco Rubio for Senate.

Demings Still Tight-Lipped on Biden’s FARC Decision One Week Later

While Governor DeSantis and Senator Rubio have taken strong positions, Val Demings remains silent on the Biden Administration’s disastrous decision to remove the FARC mercenaries from the State Department’s list of foreign terrorist organizations.

Colombian-Americans in Florida are well aware of the FARC’s decade-long terror campaign, and they’re watching as other elected officials — including numerous Florida Democrats — publicly oppose the decision while Demings remains silent. 

It appears that Demings’ silence on such a painful issue for so many Colombian-Americans in Florida is because she supports Biden’s decision. Demings is always going to side with far-left Democrats in Washington over the interests of Floridians. She is just wrong for Florida.

Attorney General Ashley Moody

AG Moody launches ‘Be A Florida Hero’ recruiting website

Attorney General Ashley Moody has launched a new law enforcement recruiting initiative encouraging job seekers from across the country to “Be a Florida Hero.”

The goal is to attract new recruits into law enforcement careers in Florida using a website that collects law enforcement career opportunities across Florida into a first-of-its-kind, one-stop shop for law enforcement job seekers.

The National Police Foundation reported that a majority of police departments nationwide experienced staffing shortages in 2020. These largely came from budget cuts, low morale among officers and increasing retirement rates. Moody said fewer officers on patrol leads to a less safe populace and an environment ripe for crime.

“Florida is the most pro-law enforcement state in the nation. We want officers from areas that don’t value their service to know that here in the Sunshine State, we back our blue,” Attorney General Moody said.

See the “Be A Florida Hero” site here: https://beafloridahero.com/index.html

Read more here: https://www.news4jax.com/news/florida/2021/10/14/florida-launches-nationwide-law-enforcement-recruitment-initiative-with-new-website/









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