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Agriculture

2024 Florida Bills Promoting the Agriculture Community

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Wilton Simpson has been traveling the state, visiting county fairs and farming communities highlighting legislation promoting agriculture.

“We didn’t get everything we wanted, but it was still a good year for Florida farmers,” Simpson told Florida Daily.

Here is a breakdown of some of the legislative items that passed in this year’s legislature.

• A bill that requires Florida school districts to approve 4-H and FFA-related activities as an excused absence from school will foster the continued growth of the next generation of Florida’s farmers. (SB 1084)

• Legislation that cracks down on theft and trespassing related to saw palmetto berries. The legislation provides tools for law enforcement to enable the state to safeguard against the illegal harvesting of this commercially exploited plant. (SB 1084)

• Legislation protecting Florida’s food and fiber production by providing enhanced criminal penalties for trespassing on commercial agricultural property with the intent to commit a crime. (SB 1084)

• Secured $40 million to support Florida’s citrus industry through infrastructure, research, and expansion of propagation and replanting efforts. (GAA)

• Managing and Preserving Natural Resources.

• Securing $100 million for the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program. This program focuses on maintaining the agricultural land base in Florida through the acquisition of permanent agricultural land conservation easements. (GAA, Line 1516)

• Secured $100 million each fiscal year, appropriated in SB 1638, to support the Florida Wildlife Corridor, including the acquisition of conservation easements under the Rural and Family Lands Protection Program.

• Secured $32 million, appropriated in SB 1638, for land management within in the Florida Forest Service.

• Secured $13.3 million for repairs and maintenance and roads and bridges maintenance on state forest lands, for facility replacements, and for reforestation efforts on public and private lands. (GAA)

• Secured $15.6 million for equipment and operational increases for the Florida Forest Service, ensuring that our firefighters have the equipment needed to complete their jobs safely and efficiently. (GAA)

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  • Florida Daily

    Florida Daily offers news, insights and analysis as we cover the most important issues in the state, from education, to business and politics.

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