TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday unveiled his budget proposal, which would double last year's per-student funding.
The $91.3 billion budget is nearly a nearly $4 billion increase from last year's proposal from then-Gov. Rick Scott.
"I think, all told, this is not a budget that is spending money unnecessarily," DeSantis said during Friday's announcement in Tallahassee.
Highlighted in the proposal was $21.7 billion in education spending. The amount would increase per-student funding from $101 to $224. Part of the educational budget is an increase of $50 million in Safe Schools Allocation and an additional $10 million for mental health in schools.
"I look forward to working with the Legislature in the coming weeks," DeSantis said. "Together, we can empower Floridians and inspire their confidence by being responsible with their money, deliver necessary services and get government out of the way in the pursuit of their dreams."
Other spending increases include additional money directed toward infrastructure, hurricane recovery and battling environmental concerns in the Everglades.
"I think with the water, people want us to tackle it," DeSantis said. "So I'm serious about doing it and I'm going to get it done."
DeSantis is asking for roughly $300 million in tax cuts, with most of it targeted to property owners.
The governor wants to hold college tuition rates steady. He also did not recommend any across-the-board pay raises for state employees.
"(If we) target our resources to things like environment, education, public safety (and) things that really benefits the state as a whole, I think we're setting ourselves up for success," DeSantis said.
Florida lawmakers will ultimately decide what is included in the budget, although the governor can veto certain items at his discretion.
For full details about the budget proposal, click here.
How we spend reflects on how we serve. I am announcing a $91.3 billion budget proposal that is aspirational but also attainable. My budget also recommends $335 million in tax cuts, including Back to School Disaster Preparedness Tax Holidays.— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) February 1, 2019
In K-12 public schools, we propose a doubling of last year’s per student funding ($101 to $224) for a total of $21.7 billion. I also propose an increase of $50 million in the Safe Schools Allocation, as well as an additional $10 million for mental health in our schools.— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) February 1, 2019
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