What lawmakers accomplished during 2019 Florida legislative session

$90 billion budget, bills addressing firefighter health, texting and driving

ORLANDO, Fla. – Two months and dozens of bills later, Florida's legislative session ended on Friday. 

In his first session since taking office, Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) laid out a more than $90 billion budget -- putting a big emphasis on education, health care and the environment. The GOP-controlled Florida Legislature approved many, if not all, of DeSantis' requests. 

"I think the advantage they had this year was that they had plenty of money -- more than $90 billion," News 6 political expert Dr. Jim Clark said. "Over the last decade they've had to make cuts, but this year there was money for just about every initiative." 

Clark, also a history professor at University of Central Florida, and News 6 anchor Justin Warmoth broke down this year's legislative session on Sunday's "The Weekly on ClickOrlando.com." 

Throughout his five-month tenure, DeSantis has largely focused on improving the environment and the health of Florida's waterways. His budget included more than $682 million to Everglades restoration. 

"He's a Republican and yet he has lined up against Big Sugar," Clark said. "From day one he has touted the environment and now he's following through. A lot of people have been surprised about that." 

Other pieces of legislation passed by lawmakers include providing coverage for firefighters diagnosed with cancer, strengthening distracted driving laws, allowing imported prescription drugs from Canada and arming teachers. 

Watch "The Weekly on ClickOrlando.com" Sunday at 8 a.m. on News 6. 

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