By Lydia Nusbaum
June 2, 2022 Updated 5:13 P.M. ET
VILLAGES (FLV) – Governor Ron DeSantis signed Florida’s $109.9 billion budget Thursday and praised the state’s “record breaking” investments and “historic” reserves.
“Florida has preserved freedom and kept the economy open, which has enabled the state to outperform the nation in jobs, growth, and business formations,” DeSantis said. “Our commitment to freedom has paid off.”
The Governor also set a new state record by vetoing $3.1 billion which DeSantis said will prepare the state for any economic downturn caused by federal policies.
“We don’t want to be in a situation where we’re repeating the mistakes of Washington by overspending,” DeSantis said. “So we want to make sure we’re responsible.”
The budget also includes a record $1.24 billion in tax relief for Floridians. That includes a gas tax holiday on October 1 to reduce the tax by $0.25 per gallon.
The state will have historic reserves totalling more than $20 billion by the end of the fiscal year 2021-2022 budget. It also provides Floridians with a plethora of tax cuts on important products like diapers, clothes, and shoes for babies and toddlers. Those cuts will last for one year beginning July 1st.
The Governor also announced $3 billion in the rainy day fund alone in the budget.
“We see the Fed is raising rates. You’ve got a lot of problems with Washington. How that’s going to impact the economy overall, we’re not going to be immune to it,” DeSantis said. “But I think that we’re in a great position to mitigate that and mitigate the effect for Floridians.”
The Florida Department of Education applauded the new budget as it includes record investments in workforce development, per-student funding, teacher pay, and literacy initiatives.
“Under the Governor’s leadership, we will remain committed to ensuring every student receives the best education available in a school that cares about them and invests in their success,” said Department of Education Commissioner Manny Diaz.
Florida House Democrats said the budget “simply doesn’t do enough to help Floridians in areas such as health care, education, and the ongoing housing affordability crisis.”
“This budget doesn’t do nearly enough for Floridians who don’t know how they’re going to afford to live in Florida another year. It’s impossible for most to pay skyrocketing rent, much less save to purchase their own home,” said Democratic House Leader Evan Jenne said.
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