Defense Reinvestment and Infrastructure Grants Announced
Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that 14 counties were awarded $2.45 million through Florida’s Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grant Programs. The funding will support community projects at 19 Florida military installations.
Governor Scott said, “These Florida Defense Programs serve to support and sustain our many military installations. The more than $2.4 million in grants will provide installations with the resources necessary to enhance military value, and allow installations to provide for and support military families. I appreciate the work Florida’s service men and women do for our state and I’m grateful we are able to get communities the funding needed to enhance base and community relations.”
For more than 15 years the defense grants have been successful tools in assisting local defense partners in supporting the State’s military installations. Florida’s military and defense sector is responsible for 9.4 percent – or $73.4 billion – of the Sunshine State’s economy. This translates to more than 758,000 statewide direct and indirect jobs.
Senate President Don Gaetz said, “Our task is to ensure Florida’s bases and missions are protected and expanded. By these grants, we are making our community more military-friendly and helping our military installations to be even better neighbors.”
House Speaker Will Weatherford said, “I’m proud of the hard work of our dedicated men and women in uniform. We need to support them and their families in any way we can. The Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Program will help provide support to our military installations and the communities that surround them.”
Senator Andy Gardiner, (President-Designate) said, “Earlier this year, the Florida Legislature passed and Governor Scott signed into law the Florida GI Bill, moving our state further towards our goal of making Florida the most military-friendly state in the nation. Florida’s Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grants build on that commitment and provide resources needed to support, build and grow military communities across Florida.”
Representative Steve Crisafulli, (Speaker-Designate) said, “The brave men and women of our military have made incredible sacrifices for our state and our nation. This funding will play a great role in supporting them and our military bases across our state. Governor Scott and the Legislature are firmly committed to supporting our military, and these grants will further strengthen the incredible impact our military has in communities across Florida.”
Representative Jimmy Patronis, chair of the Florida Defense Support Task Force, said, “I am honored to join Governor Scott and the Legislature in securing this investment to support our military members and their families and communities. These grants are vital to preserving our military bases and the great economic impact they have across our state.”
“The Florida Defense Grants Programs are vital for our military and defense industry, and strengthen Florida’s workforce through the highly skilled former military personnel who enter the employment market each year. I am proud to play a part in supporting our military installations and communities, and appreciate what our service men and women do to protect our state,” said Gray Swoope, Florida Secretary of Commerce and President & CEO of Enterprise Florida.
A combined $2,450,000 was awarded to 14 communities in the state, helping to protect and improve 19 installations, and furthering Florida’s reputation as the most military friendly state in the nation.
Twelve counties received a Defense Reinvestment Grant, which is designed to support relationships between military installations and their community. The total grant award amount of $850,000 will help to protect Florida’s military installations, as well as promote economic diversification strategies in defense dependent communities.
The Defense Infrastructure Grant is awarded to local projects deemed to have a positive impact on the military value of the installation in addition to benefitting the community. Ten counties were awarded $1,600,000 for encroachment, transportation and access, utilities, communications, environment, or security projects.
The 2014-15 Defense Grants were awarded to defense partners in the following counties: Polk, Brevard (2), Duval (2), Santa Rosa (2), Okaloosa (2), Clay (2), Pinellas, Escambia (2), Orange (2), Bay (2), Miami-Dade, Hillsborough, Walton and Highlands.
The Florida Defense Grants Programs are administered by Enterprise Florida, Inc. The grants are awarded annually through a competitive process to communities hosting military installations.