For Immediate Release
Wednesday, June 8, 2022
Contact: Mallory Morgan
Governor DeSantis Makes Historic Investments in Elections Security in Freedom First Budget
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
Today, Secretary Byrd and the Florida Department of State applauded Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida Legislature for the 2022-2023 budget accomplishments which will continue to protect the security and integrity of Florida’s elections, preserve Florida’s history and culture, improve businesses, and support libraries across the state.
“I want to thank Governor Ron DeSantis and the members of the Florida Senate and Florida House of Representatives for their steadfast leadership and dedication to serving the people of Florida,” said Secretary Byrd. “Due to their generous support and collaborative efforts, the Florida Department of State will have the necessary resources to protect Florida’s election infrastructure, preserve Florida’s unique history, fund libraries, support cultural programming and invest in our communities and businesses.”
Florida Department of State budget highlights:
- Funding to strengthen Florida’s election infrastructure – Governor DeSantis and Secretary Byrd have made elections integrity a top priority. The Department of State, Division of Elections, works hard to meet the highest standards for security and integrity. Florida was a model for successful election administration in the 2020 election cycle, and we continue to seek ways to improve our processes. The budget includes $24.3 million for state-level election oversight activities, with a focus on The Office of Elections Crimes and Security and cybersecurity enhancements to Florida’s election systems. This amount includes:
- $1.2 million for the creation of The Office of Elections Crimes and Security including 15 positions
- 15 new positions to ensure the integrity of Florida’s voting rolls
- $8 million for the Help America Vote Act (HAVA) Election Security Grant Funding
- $450,000 for project planning for future upgrades to the Florida Voter Registration System (FVRS) and Online Voter Registration (OVR) system
- $575,000 for ERIC/Voter Outreach Mailout for Unregistered Voters
- Funding to support Florida’s Libraries and Library Systems - Libraries play a vital role in providing new technologies, training, tools, and resources to Florida’s local communities. Libraries also support the state by providing economic development, workforce recovery and by acting as small business incubators in their communities. The budget includes $36.1 million:
- Increased Funding for State Aid to Libraries – The goal of the State Aid to Libraries Program is to assist local governments in maintaining and developing vital library services. Specifically, providing equal access to free public library service to all residents of the service areas of participating governments, coordinating library service throughout the service area, and providing consistent plans, programs, policies and procedures in the operation, maintenance, and development of library service throughout the service area. An additional $2 million is provided for this program.
- Funding Florida’s Historic Preservation and Exhibition – The Florida Department of State’s Division of Historical Resources (DHR) is responsible for preserving and promoting Florida’s historical and archaeological resources. DHR directs historic preservation efforts throughout the state in cooperation with state and federal agencies, local governments, private organizations, and individuals. The budget includes:
- $13.8 million for State Archaeological Collections Facility Expansion
- Fully funding $21.5 million for Historic Preservation Grants
- Fully funding The Division of Arts and Culture Cultural and Museum Grants - The Division of Arts and Culture grants support Florida’s cultural organizations and artists and support Florida's position as a recognized national leader in arts and culture. The budget includes:
- Funding of $46 million to provide grants for over 500 projects.
- $1M for the Champlain Towers South Memorial in remembrance for those impacted by the Surfside Building Collapse.
- Funding for the Division of Corporations - As the State’s central location for filing business entities, trade and service marks, fictitious name registrations, judgment and federal tax liens, UCC financing statements, and notary commissions and apostilles, we serve as an informational resource for statewide business activities, registrations and certificates. This budget includes $8.3 million for consumer safety and protection. This amount includes:
- $1.4 million for Corporate Registry Maintenance
- $4.1 million for Continued Support for the Legacy Corporate Database
- $500,000 for Electronic Imaging Conversion Project
About the Florida Department of State: The Department of State strives to improve the quality of life for all Floridians. We collect Florida's important public records and preserve its rich historical and cultural heritage for the benefit of generations to come. We interpret Florida's rich history and make it accessible to the public through our nationally recognized museums and historic sites. We help to promote economic development and create a competitive business climate for the state through our business-friendly corporate filing environment, grant programs that benefit all communities, enrichment of public libraries statewide, and support for events that attract tourism. We contribute to the establishment of a stable and open state government by providing access to information and protecting democracy through the oversight of fair and accurate elections.