On Monday, Governor Ron DeSantis met with first responders from The Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department to deliver $1,000 bonuses that reward our first responders and recognize them for their dedicated public service. These recognition payments were a part of the Freedom First Budget signed by the Governor earlier this year, in addition to historic legislation that supports Florida’s law enforcement and first responders. Eligible recipients of the first responder recognition bonus payments are police officers, sheriff’s deputies, paramedics, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), and firefighters employed by local governments throughout the state.
“Florida supports our first responders because these men and women put on their uniforms every day to serve and protect,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “These bonuses are a token of our appreciation for the work that they do and the sacrifices they make to keep Florida safe. I am happy to deliver the bonuses for a second year in a row!”
“We are proud to support Governor DeSantis in recognizing Florida’s hardworking first responders,” said Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) Secretary Dane Eagle. “Today, we honor their sacrifices and express our sincere appreciation for the heroism of these men and women who go above and beyond to serve their communities.”
“Florida’s firefighters and first responders are dedicated to protecting our communities and keeping Floridians safe,” said Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis. “While others seek shelter or run for safety, these brave heroes run towards danger and place their lives on the line to save others. Thank you to Governor Ron DeSantis for his unwavering support of these outstanding men and women. As Florida’s State Fire Marshal, I am proud to have the opportunity to give back to our first responders in appreciation for everything they do for Floridians.”
DEO will administer the one-time recognition bonuses of up to $1,000, after taxes, for sworn law enforcement officers, emergency medical technicians (EMTs), firefighters, and paramedics employed by a local government as of May 1, 2022.
The 2022–2023 General Appropriations Act passed by the Florida Legislature during the 2022 Legislative Session includes $125 million for the Essential First Responders Recognition Program. The Governor proposed the bonuses for first responders at an event in November 2021 ahead of the 2022 Legislative Session. In addition to these bonuses for local government first responders, state law enforcement officers have received a pay increase across the board.
Additionally, Governor DeSantis proposed and the Legislature passed House Bill 3, a sweeping law enforcement recruitment and retention bill, which encourages Floridians to join the law enforcement profession and out of state law enforcement professionals to bring their skills to the Sunshine State.
For more information about the First Responder Recognition Bonuses, visit www.FloridaJobs.org/Recognition-and-Recruitment.