DeSantis Approves Numerous Budget Items

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) this week approved millions of dollars that were debated during the 2022 Legislative Session’s budget conferences. One of the largest recipients of state dollars is cancer research, which will be receiving $100 million.

At a press conference on Wednesday, DeSantis made the announcement alongside his wife, first lady Casey DeSantis, who battled breast cancer.

“We have secured a record $100 million for Florida’s top cancer centers to research treatments and cures for this terrible disease,” DeSantis said. My family knows firsthand that battling cancer is tough, but @FLCaseyDeSantis is proof that Florida’s cancer centers provide outstanding care.”

DeSantis will receive the budget, in full, on July 1, and will begin picking and choosing which items he wants to keep in the $112 billion budget. He is currently selecting and announcing which items he will likely keep. Florida’s constitution permits the governor to issue a line-item veto on any program contained within the budget.

DeSantis also signed mental health legislation intended to aid the parents of public-school students who receive such services.

It specifically notes that parents of students receiving mental health services be notified of “other behavioral health services available through the student’s school or local community-based” providers.

Numerous provisions also set to receive funding include: $800 million to boost teacher pay, $400 million for rural broadband expansion, $30 million for rural infrastructure development, $125 million for first-responder bonuses, and $14 million for researching red-tide and blue-green algae.

Nursing programs were also a big recipient with $125 million, but DeSantis has not yet made any decisions regarding specific vetoes.

“I have not decided that I would veto any of those as of now,” DeSantis said. “And so, we’ll see how we’re going. We haven’t completed the full review. But regardless of how it comes out, I think almost assuredly you will see a really significant amount of money go to both state colleges, actually some school districts, as well as universities, to be able to expand some of the facilities that they have.”

Related to law enforcement, DeSantis has supported recruiting and retaining law enforcement officers, securing more than $34 million to fund that kind of program.

State workers will also be receiving raises for the first time in years. Approximately $225 million will go to funding the raises for the nearly 100,000 workers in the state personnel system.

“Every state employee under our budget will be able to see a salary increase,” DeSantis said back in December.

Political pundits are unsure what, if anything, DeSantis would veto. Election-year budgets tend to remain intact; however, last year DeSantis vetoed over $1.5 billion, lowering Florida’s total spending to just over $100 billion.

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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at The Florida Capital Star and The Star News Network. Follow Grant on Twitter and direct message tips.
Photo “Ron DeSantis” by Ron DeSantis. 




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