APALACHICOLA, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis visited Apalachicola to announce more than $1.3 million in awards through the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity’s (DEO) Rebuild Florida Hazard Mitigation Grant Match Program and the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). As Franklin County continues to recover from the impacts of storms and unique economic hurdles, this funding supports economic prosperity in one of North Florida’s most cherished communities. Additionally, the Governor announced his support for a $4 million line item in this year’s General Appropriations Act, signed by the legislature, to replenish sand at St. George Island State Park. 
“Apalachicola is a special place and the state is proud of this community,” said Governor DeSantis. “The City of Apalachicola is a part of our state’s rich history and we are committed to helping the community succeed for its workforce, its families, and the entire region.”
“A huge thank you to Governor DeSantis for providing more than $1.3 million in funding for workforce training and infrastructure to Apalachicola,” said Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis. “Between storms and the impacted oyster industry that generations of families have relied upon, this community has been through a lot. Today’s announcement reaffirms the Governor’s commitment to ensuring our Panhandle communities rebuild.”
“Governor DeSantis charged our team with launching a renewed and steadfast commitment to Apalachicola and this entire area, one of North Florida’s favorite places to visit and enjoy Florida’s scenic beauty,” said DEO Secretary Dane Eagle. “Apalachicola continues to sustain and grow its economy, and our department will stand ready as a partner, especially for the benefit of Apalachicola’s workforce.” 
“Governor DeSantis is leading the way in ensuring our state is prepared to withstand any disaster,” said Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie. “Under the Governor’s leadership, the Division is committed to strengthening Florida’s communities by supporting these projects and continuing our work with DEO on identifying future opportunities for disaster mitigation.”
WIOA grants are awarded to workforce development boards throughout the state to provide support employment and training services to job seekers and businesses. Today’s award earmarked $500,000 for Apalachicola through Career Source of Gulf Coast. These grants are awarded to provide support for the immediate needs of various industries that include On-the-Job Training (OJT) opportunities. Training opportunities will be available for carpentry, electrical work, professional painting, plumbing, HVAC, and roofing.  Additionally, funds can be used to assist with earning various credentials and certifications to improve employability.
The Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) administers the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program (HMGP) in Florida, which requires a local match of 25%. In partnership with DEO, the state of Florida funds the local match portion of the HMGP. The Hazard Mitigation Grant Match Program funding announced today will benefit: 
  • The City of Apalachicola ($652,000) – to construct a new vacuum sewage station on Market Street to upgrade the existing wastewater infrastructure and mitigate future sewer overflows.
  • Franklin County ($156,088) – to install four permanent generators to provide a source of backup power for future disasters.

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