Tag Archives: Governor Ron DeSantis

Governor Ron DeSantis Signs School Safety Bill Supported By Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission

From Governor Ron DeSantis office:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed HB 1421, which takes several measures to improve school safety in Florida. The steps taken by HB 1421 build on legislation over the last three years to implement the additional recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission to make schools safer and improve youth mental health in Florida. In the Freedom First Budget, Governor DeSantis also approved a record $140 million for mental health and $210 million for school safety, including school hardening grants and youth mental health awareness and assistance training.

“Every child needs a safe and secure learning environment,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “By signing HB 1421, we continue to build on the many steps we have taken since 2019 to implement the recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission, while also making record investments in mental health and school safety.”

“This legislation is a huge leap forward in school safety,” said State Board of Education Member Ryan Petty.“I want to thank Governor DeSantis for his bold leadership on this most fundamental issue. Nothing is more important than providing safe and secure learning environments for our children and educators. Extending the Commission’s work and requiring mental health and de-escalation training for safe-school officers will make a major difference in mitigating the risk of a future tragedy.”

“Every parent deserves to know their child is safe at school,” said Tony Montalto, President of Stand with Parkland. “This new law, which passed unanimously through the Florida Legislature, is an important next step in providing school safety assurances to families and students. Florida will continue to do everything possible to make sure our schools meet the highest safety standards and that mental health issues associated with school violence are being addressed.”

HB 1421 does the following: 

  • Extends the sunset of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission; 
  • Authorizes the Commissioner of Education to enforce, rather than just oversee, school safety and security compliance;
  • Authorizes safe school officers to make arrests on charter school property;
  • Requires all safe school officers to complete crisis intervention and training to improve knowledge and skills for response and de-escalate incidents on school premises;
  • Requires law enforcement officers to be present and involved in active assailant emergency drills; 
  • Requires school boards to adopt family reunification plans in the event of an evacuation; and
  • Requires that school districts must annually certify that at least 80 percent of school personnel have received mandatory youth mental health awareness training.

Since 2019, Governor DeSantis has prioritized school safety and mental health funding in Florida and has increased the amount of funding for these initiatives every year he has been in office.

In 2021, the Governor signed SB 590, which required school administrators to gather data on involuntary examinations of students and report data to the Department of Education (DOE); required school safety officers to receive mental health training; and required schools to give timely notification of threats, unlawful acts, and significant emergencies. In Fiscal Year 2021-2022, the Governor signed $368 million in the budget for school safety and mental health funding, including: 

  • $120 million for the Mental Health Assistance Allocation, an increase of $20 million over the previous year;
  • $180 million maintained for the Safe Schools component of the Florida Education
  • Finance Program (FEFP); and
  • $6.5 million for the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program to train teachers and staff for emergencies. 

These bills strengthened the protection of children by increasing communication and notifications prior to a student being subjected to an involuntary examination, and required additional mental health training for teachers and students in teacher preparation programs.

In 2020, the Governor signed Senate Bill (SB) 70, Alyssa’s Law, which required DOE to utilize funding and work with public schools to implement a panic alert system to ensure real-time coordination between first responders. For the 2020-2021 Fiscal Year, the Governor signed $342 million for school safety and mental health funding, including: 

  • $100 million for Mental Health Assistance Allocation, an increase of $25 million over the previous year;
  • $180 million maintained for the Safe Schools component of the FEFP;
  • $3 million for recurring funding to gather an analyze data from social media and state agencies; and
  • $8 million for Alyssa’s Law, to implement a panic alert system between schools and emergency services. 

In 2019, the Governor enacted legislation to implement school safety recommendations of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission and issued Executive Order 19-45 to require the Department of Education to communicate best practices for school safety to all school districts. In Fiscal Year 2019-2020, the Governor approved $317 million for school safety and mental health funding including: 

  • $180 million for the Safe Schools component of the FEFP;
  • Over $80 million for Mental Health Assistance Allocation and for Youth Mental Health awareness; and
  • $50 million for school hardening grants to improve security of school campuses.

Governor Ron DeSantis Signs Bipartisan Property Insurance and Condominium Safety Reforms

From Governor Ron DeSantis’ office:

Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed bipartisan legislation implementing the most significant and comprehensive property insurance reforms Florida has seen in decades to provide short- and long-term relief to Floridians to combat skyrocketing insurance costs. A one pager on the insurance reforms can be found here.

Additionally, Governor DeSantis signed legislation which modifies structural inspection and financial reserve requirements for condominium associations.

“This package represents the most significant reforms to Florida’s homeowners insurance market in a generation,” saidGovernor Ron DeSantis. “These bills will help stabilize a problematic market, help Floridians harden their homes through the My Safe Florida Home Program, and pave the way for more choices for homeowners.”

“I’m grateful that Governor DeSantis called lawmakers to convene this week to pass legislation that will help rein in insurance rates, provide premium savings to Floridians, and aid in hardening homes against storms,” said Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis. “I remain committed to fighting insurance fraud and bolstering our investigative services to further support our efforts to protect consumers.”

Senate Bill 2B, signed by Governor DeSantis today, enacts pro-consumer measures to help alleviate rising insurance costs, increases insurance claim transparency, and cracks down on frivolous lawsuits which drive up costs for all Floridians. Specific provisions to stabilize the market include:

  • $2 billion in reinsurance relief through the Reinsurance to Assist Policy (RAP) program to benefit policyholders over the next two years.
    • Requires insurance companies to file a supplemental rate filing once enrolled in the program to provide relief to policyholders.
  • $150 million for the My Safe Florida Home Program to provide grants to Florida homeowners for hurricane retrofitting, making homes safer and more resistant to hurricane damage, which can result in premium discounts for those who participate in the program.
  • Prohibiting insurance companies from denying coverage solely based on the age of a roof if the roof is less than 15 years old or if the roof is determined to have at least 5 years of useful life remaining.
  • Requiring insurance companies to provide policyholders with a reasonable explanation if they deny or partially deny a claim and provides consumers with greater access to information during the claim adjustment process.
  • Creating a new standard for application of attorney fee multipliers which have been liberally applied, resulting in increased costs to consumers.
  • Limiting the assignment of attorney’s fees in property insurance cases, disincentivizing frivolous claims.

Senate Bill 4B, also signed today, includes reforms to increase the safety of condominiums.

  • Requiring inspections for all condominiums and cooperative buildings that are three stories or higher.
    • For buildings within three miles of the coast, Phase 1 inspections must occur 25 years after initial occupancy and every 10 years after.
    • For all other buildings, Phase 1 inspections must occur 30 years after initial occupancy and every 10 years after.
    • If a Phase 1 inspection reveals substantial structural deterioration, a more intensive Phase 2 inspection is required.
  • Requiring condominiums and cooperatives to conduct structural integrity reserve studies for buildings three stories or higher to ensure the funding necessary for future structural repairs is available and prohibits waiver of funding for certain structural reserves.
  • Increasing transparency by requiring all structural inspections reports and reserve studies to be part of the associations’ official record and must be provided to potential purchasers of a unit.

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Signs Ten Bills

From Governor Ron DeSantis’ office:

Today, Governor Ron DeSantis signed the following bills:
HB 159 – Public Records
CS/CS/HB 389 – Money Services Businesses
CS/CS/HB 423 – Building Regulation
CS/CS/HB 837 – Hurricane Loss Mitigation Program
CS/CS/CS/HB 959 – Department of Financial Services
CS/HB 1023 – Insolvent Insurers
HB 1433 – Orange County
CS/HB 6513 – Relief of Kareem Hawari by the Osceola County School Board
CS/CS/HB 7001 – Implementation of the Constitutional Prohibition Against Lobbying by a Public Officer
HB 7003 – Implementation of the Constitutional Prohibition Against Lobbying by a Former Justice or Judge