John Grant Opinion: Ron DeSantis is Taking January by Storm

January,‭ ‬the first month of‭ ‬the calendar,‭ ‬was named after the Roman god Janus,‭ ‬who was referred to as the god of beginnings,‭ ‬gateways,‭ ‬and doorways.‭ ‬The month symbolizes new beginnings and a fresh start.‭

So far this year,‭ ‬it seems Gov. Ron DeSantis is taking that meaning to heart and taking January by storm.‭ ‬Even as the governor was inaugurated into his second term,‭ ‬a number‭ ‬of new state laws and changes to current laws began taking effect.‭

Some of those changes include toll road credits for certain motorists,‭ ‬disaster assistance in the form of property tax rebates when residential properties are rendered uninhabitable,‭ ‬and most notably the changes regarding property insurance ending a controversial practice known as assignment of benefits.‭

What’s also significant is a land preservation plan freeing up‭ ‬$300‭ million for land acquisition.‭ ‬The governor has made it clear he doesn’t want other countries like China buying up property within the Sunshine State.‭ ‬These significant state developments all took place on day one of‭ ‬2023.‭

Days later,‭ DeSantis issued an executive order ‬to further advance the protection of Florida’s environment and water quality.‭ ‬He proposed a‭ ‬$3.5‭ ‬billion investment over four years for Everglades restoration and protection of our water sources‭ ‬-‭ ‬surpassing the historic investments he made during his last term to make this the highest level of funding in Florida’s history.

And if that wasn’t enough,‭ ‬the governor also announced this week that he’s working to get prescription drug costs decreased.‭ ‬He’s doing this by reining in Prescription Benefit Managers that have acted as the middlemen between pharmaceutical companies and pharmacists.‭ ‬These mostly unregulated and unchecked PBMs,‭ ‬as they are called,‭ ‬often jack up drug prices for their own financial gain and it’s the consumer and small pharmacies that end up footing the bill.

During his first term,‭ ‬the governor worked to improve the lives of the elderly with special services and Alzheimer’s research.‭ ‬He has also worked to improve the lives of our children by protecting their schools and their minds.‭ ‬All this while protecting our wallets,‭ ‬our homes,‭ ‬and our state resources.

Isn’t that what we want from all our government leaders,‭ ‬to do what they say they will do and to serve and protect the people‭? ‬There’s a proverb that says,‭ “‬Where there is no vision,‭ ‬the people perish.‭” ‬DeSantis most certainly has a vision‭ – ‬one that he is quickly turning into reality.

In his inauguration address,‭ ‬the governor reaffirmed his commitment to the “Free State of Florida”‭ – ‬the land of liberty and the land of sanity,‭ ‬where‭ “‬woke goes to die‭”‬.‭ ‬It has not always been a popular message,‭ ‬but since the pandemic,‭ ‬historic numbers of families moved to Florida to get away from lockdowns and restrictions enforced in other states.‭ ‬So,‭ ‬his words and his deeds are resonating not only in Florida but around our great country.

Florida is buzzing and the nation,‭ ‬even the world, is watching to see what happens next and how DeSantis manages it all.‭ “‬Florida shows that results matter.‭” ‬The governor said it and he’s definitely living it.‭ ‬If January is any indication of the governor’s mission to get things done,‭ ‬then he’s off to a great start in‭ ‬2023.‭

John Grant, a former state representative and state senator,‭ ‬an estate planning attorney,‭ ‬and a member of the National Senior Citizen Hall of Fame,‭ ‬has spent much of his career working on behalf of seniors. ‭ ‬John is continuing the advocacy work by heading a new venture called Seniors Across America to continue speaking up for our elderly population.

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