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Governor Ron DeSantis Awards $300 Million for Projects to Protect Communities from Impacts of Flooding and Storm Surge

Governor Ron DeSantis Awards 0 Million for Projects to Protect Communities from Impacts of Flooding and Storm Surge

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced the award of $300 million in state funding from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for 71 new resilience and adaptation projects and three previously awarded projects to help prepare coastal and inland communities for the adverse impacts of flooding and storm surge.

“The Framework for Freedom budget is a testament to our unwavering commitment to protect Florida’s communities and secure their economic vitality,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Florida is a storm-prone state, and following two back-to-back hurricanes last year, this funding advances Florida’s continuing efforts to strengthen our infrastructure and fortify against the impacts of storm surge and flooding.”

Last month, Governor DeSantis signed the Framework for Freedom Budget for Fiscal Year 2023-24, solidifying Florida’s position as a national leader in resilience action. In the budget is $356 million for resilience, which includes $300 million for implementing statewide resilience projects as well as $56 million for resilience planning and coral reef protection.

“We are grateful for Governor DeSantis’ steadfast dedication to the resilience of our state,” said Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “The funding for this year’s Statewide Flooding and Sea Level Rise Resilience Plan enables us to prepare both inland and coastal communities for the risks of storm surge, rainfall-induced flooding, and hurricanes. It underscores the importance of protecting Florida’s natural resources and critical infrastructure.”

“Governor DeSantis’ bold vision for a Resilient Florida is driving progress toward safer and more productive communities,” said Chief Resilience Officer Dr. Wes Brooks. “By prioritizing infrastructure investments and leveraging nature-based solutions, this plan aims to safeguard communities, foster economic vitality and build a resilient future for Florida.”

During Governor DeSantis’ administration, the state has invested more than $1.4 billion to increase the coastal and inland resilience of Florida’s communities.

Earlier this year, Governor DeSantis announced the award of more than $275 million for 75 resilience projects using previously appropriated funding through the Resilient Florida program. Additionally, DEP announced the award of over $28 million to develop or update comprehensive vulnerability assessments. At the conclusion of these assessments, all 67 counties in Florida will have completed a vulnerability assessment.

DEP is currently accepting grant applications through the Resilient Florida Grant Program until Sept. 1, 2023, for new proposed projects that could be funded in the next Statewide Flooding and Sea Level Rise Resilience Plan. Some of these proposals aim to protect critical assets such as transportation and evacuation routes; critical infrastructure; critical community and emergency facilities; and natural, cultural, and historical resources.

Please visit DEP’s website for a list of projects in the Statewide Flooding and Sea Level Rise Resilience Plan.

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Originally published at https://www.flgov.com/2023/07/13/governor-ron-desantis-awards-300-million-for-projects-to-protect-communities-from-impacts-of-flooding-and-storm-surge/

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Floridas Editor