TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — With four signatures, Gov. Ron DeSantis turned the resulting bills from last week's special session of the Florida Legislature into four new state laws. The total cost comes to $432 million, according to our news partners at the Orlando Sentinel.
As we approach three months since Hurricane Idalia caused destruction along part of the Gulf coast and caused damaging erosion to Florida's Atlantic coast, financial assistance is now on the way. HB 1-C includes $176.01 million for the My Safe Florida Home program, which provides matching grants up to $10,000 to strengthen homes against hurricanes.
Under HB 3-C, the maximum number of students served under the Family Empowerment Scholarship Program for students with disabilities will increase for the 2023-2024 school year and continue to grow by 3% each year after that. According to the bill summary, this will not require additional funding.
This new law requires the State Board of Administration to divest from an expanded list of "scutinized" companies to include any from a wide range of industries that do business with the government of Iran.
That list of companies in which Florida will no longer invest was also changed from the “Scrutinized Companies with Activities in the Iran Petroleum Energy Sector List” to the “Scrutinized Companies with Activities in Iran Terrorism Sectors List.”
HB 5-C came in response to the Oct. 7 Hamas terrorist attacks on Israel.
Jewish school security
As the war in Gaza that resulted from the attacks has increased instances of antisemitism around the world, HB 7-C provides $25 million in state funding to harden security at Jewish schools in Florida.
$15 million will go toward security infrastructure, and $10 million will fund grants for security personnel and training.