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DeSantis vetoes funding for local hospitals, art centers and more

Veronica Brezina

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Ron DeSantis
Governor Ron DeSantis said that keeping schools closed for in-person learning could widen the achievement gap.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis approved the state budget for fiscal year 2021-2022, which vetoes funding for many Tampa Bay area organizations.

The budget, which DeSantis signed on Wednesday, totaled $101.5 billion and includes $169 million in tax relief. DeSantis vetoed $1.5 billion in total spending, including $1.35 billion from federal funds received under the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

The budget will affect large organizations in the Tampa Bay area and certain projects they had ranging from education to health care.

A closer look at the local organizations and their projects affected by the vetoes:

The Florida Orchestra: Music Education for All (Senate Form 1576) (House Bill 3681): $600,000

Saint Petersburg CollegeMidtown campus digital inclusion and enhancements (Senate Form 1419) (HB 3481): $ 674,484

John Hopkins All Children ‘s Hospital academic orthodontic care for complex pediatric patients in the Tampa Bay Area (Senate Form 1189) (HB 2887): $550,000

Great Explorations Children’s Museum guest experience improvement project in Pinellas County (Senate Form 1036): $242,260

BayCare behavioral health remote patient monitoring program: (Senate Form 1081) (HB 2225) $100,000

St. Pete Urban Youth Farm (Senate Form 1341) (HB 3811): $370,000

Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority (Senate Form 2127) (HB 2037): $1.5 million

Feeding Tampa Bay – FRESHforce Program (Senate Form1303): $400,000

See the full list here.

The Florida Leads budget leaves $9.5 billion in reserves, including more than $1.2 billion in revenues collected above the April revenue estimates, maintaining ample resources to respond to hurricanes and other unforeseen circumstances, according to DeSantis’ office.

The budget does provide further investments for transportation. Investments in the Florida Department of Transportation total $10.3 billion, including $9.44 billion for the State Transportation Work Program, which is an ongoing five-year plan for the implementation and completion of transportation infrastructure projects. The budget also includes $74 million for the Job Growth Grant Fund, $75 million for Visit Florida, $1.6 billion in disaster recovery funding, and a one-time relief payment of $1,000 for Florida’s First Responders, according to the office’s release.

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Beverly Swartz

    June 3, 2021at9:02 am

    Desantis read “Democrats” instead of Child Education. Not sure what he approved for Bay County, the “Ultimate Red County”. Maybe a full grant to build an unneeded convention center for PC Beach, mais bein sûr.

  2. Avatar

    Lisa

    June 3, 2021at12:25 pm

    How can you veto federal relief money? Does that mean he neglected to accept the funds?

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