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Thursday, May 30, 2024

DeSantis Proposes Adding $400M to Law Enforcement Budget

'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...'

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis proposed adding $400 million in funding to the state’s law enforcement budget to incentivize the recruitment of new officers.

“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,” DeSantis said in a statement.

“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,” he said, “and to provide $1,000 bonuses for first responders and law enforcement officers for the second year in a row.”

The proposal would allocate $73 million to increase the minimum pay for entry-level sworn state law enforcement officers by 20% and increase veteran officer salaries by 25%. Another $135 million would go toward increasing the base pay of correctional officers and Department of Juvenile Justice officers, and $1.4 million would go toward increasing the salaries of state special risk firefighters by up to $2,500 each.

The funding would also supply $5,000 signing bonuses for every law enforcement recruit, and $1,000 for every law enforcement employee who relocates from another state to Florida.

Earlier this year, DeSantis worked with the state legislature to secure $1,000 bonuses for more than 150,000 first responders. His new proposal would include a second round of $1,000 bonuses for first responders, which include law enforcement officers, paramedics, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), and firefighters.

He has also pushed the state legislature to increase the bonuses to $5,000 for law enforcement officials who relocate to Florida.

“In Florida, not only are we going to want to protect the law enforcement and all the jobs,”he said, “we are actively working to recruit out-of-state law enforcement because we do have needs in our police and sheriff’s departments.”

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