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Governor DeSantis proposes $5,000 signing bonus for new officers

Ron DeSantis
FILE – In this April 30, 2021, file photo (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee, File)

In an effort to attract new police officers to Florida and to increase morale on the police force, Governor Ron DeSantis is proposing a plan that will give police officers a $5,000 signing bonus.

“We think that’s a good way to draw talent from within our own state to enter the profession in the first place,” DeSantis said in a press conference on Tuesday. “But we also think it’s a way to capitalize off some of the folks who are not getting the support they need and to say, you know what, you’ll be supported in Florida.”

The signing bonus will be good for officers who are new to Florida including veteran officers who are relocating from other states and those who have recently entered the profession.

In addition to the bonus, the state would also cover the cost of the State Officer Certification Exam, and any necessary training programs up to $1,000 for out-of-state officers.

DeSantis also showed his support for those in service earlier this year by offering $1,000 bonuses to all sworn law enforcement officers, firefighters, and first responders in the state.

“It’s fundamental that we have safe communities, and you don’t have safe communities if you’re not supporting the folks who wear the uniform,” DeSantis said.

The Governor has requested that legislatures to consider the latest funding plans at the next session on Jan. 11th.