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Governor Unveils Wish List For Upcoming Fiscal Year Spending

Governor Ron DeSantis speaking at a podium in his Press Office
Blaise Gainey

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis released his wish list for the 2020-2021 budget. It totals 91.4 billion, with much of that $400 million increase going to education. 

One change would get rid of the Best and Brightest Teacher and Principal bonus program and create a new, $300 million one.

"The $300 million is going to provide up to $7,500 in teacher bonuses, and I think $10,000 in principal bonuses," explains DeSantis. "But we’re really trying to help and reward teachers in Title I schools."

Title I schools are those with a high number of students living in poverty. In the proposed budget, Title I teachers would get an amount double that of teachers at non-Title I schools.

The budget would also raise base student allocation by 50 dollars per student and provide pay raises to more than 101,000 teachers. As for higher education, the governor is also once again proposing no tuition increases for Florida colleges and universities.

The budget also keeps with DeSantis's plans to invest $2.5 billion over four years into the environment. This year he is asking for $625 million in recurring funds with the majority going toward Everglades restoration projects.

“That’s over $300 million for Everglades projects, $150 million for water quality improvements, $50 million to reduce nutrients in the water, $50 million for springs restoration. More than $22 million to combat the impact and effects of algae and red tide," announced DeSantis.

He wants the legislature to put $25 million into the Hurricane Michael Recovery Grant Program. And $50 million would go to replenishing beaches.