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Issue 1   |  January 17, 2020

Top News: 2020 Florida Legislative Session Begins
Governor DeSantis addresses the Legislature on the first day of the 2020 Florida Legislative Session.

The 60 day 2020 Legislative Session began on Tuesday, January 14, as Florida's 46th Governor, Ron DeSantis, celebrated successes from the 2019 Legislative Session in his  State of the State Address  to Florida's legislators ... "W e took bold steps to expand educational opportunities, protect our environment and natural resources, reform health care, invest in infrastructure and bolster public safety - all while reducing taxes and adding to our budget reserves ."  As of the Tuesday deadline, 3,382 bills had been filed for consideration during the session, but the only bill the Legislature is constitutionally required to pass is the 2020-2021 state budget, which will likely be in the range of $94 billion.  It has been widely reported that this will be a very competitive year for non-recurring appropriations due to a predicted restraint on General Revenue in the next five years.  A multitude of major issues face the Legislature, including an increase in teacher pay, healthcare, mental health, criminal justice reform, school safety, substance use prevention and the environment.
Priority United Way Bills Heard this Week

Week of January 13-17, 2020

CS/HB 81 Medicaid School-Based Services  (Andrade; R-Pensacola) - The bill aligns current law with the federal Medicaid requirements by removing the requirement that Medicaid recipients receiving services through the Florida Medicaid Certified School Match Program qualify for Part B or H of the IDEA, or for exceptional student services, or have an IEP or IFSP.   Passed the Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee on January 15.
CS/HB 171 Postsecondary Education for Certain Military Personnel  (Ponder; R-Fort Walton Beach and Hattersley; D-Hillsborough) - Requires creation of a uniform system to enable service members and veterans of the United States Armed Forces to earn academic college credit at public postsecondary educational institutions for college-level training, education, and experience acquired in the military. The bill delineates the minimum required procedures for evaluating military credentials and experience and awarding academic college credit based on such credentials and experience. Passed by the Higher Education Appropriations Subcommittee on January 15.
HB 2613 Broward Behavioral Health Coalition's Zero Suicide Initiative (Jenne; D-Broward) - Requests an appropriation of $500,000 to fund evidence-based practices that target suicide prevention, interventions and post-inventions for at-risk populations.  Passed by the Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee on January 13.
HB 9095 Heart of Florida United Way Orlando United Assistance Center (Heart of FL Pulse) (Smith; D-Orlando) - Requests appropriation of $595,031 to fund the OUAC for 2020-2021.  Passed by the Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee on January 13.
Click for Updates on all Florida United Way Priority Bills.
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Questions or Comments?
Contact Rick Owen, United Way of Florida or Heather Davidson, United Way of Broward County