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More than $3 million to make Florida most military friendly state

Staff writer |
Governor Rick Scott announced that 13 counties were awarded $2,450,000 through Florida’s Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grant Programs.

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The funding will support community projects at 19 Florida military installations. Governor Scott also announced that defense partners in four counties were awarded more than $700,000 through the Florida Defense Support Task Force Grant Program.

This funding will support four projects to strengthen Florida’s bases ahead of any potential Department of Defense realignment or closure actions, thereby protecting more than $73.4 billion in economic impact, and more than 758,000 jobs that the defense industry supports in the state. These grants are administered by Enterprise Florida, Inc.

Governor Rick Scott said, “As a Navy veteran, I am proud to announce the combined funding from the Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grant Programs, and the Defense Support Task Force Grant Program will provide more than $3 million of support for defense communities across the state. We are committed to continuing to make important investments to support the brave servicemen and women, veterans and military families who selflessly serve our country."

The 2015-2016 Defense Grants were awarded to defense partners in the following counties: Polk, Brevard, Duval, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Clay, Pinellas, Escambia, Orange, Bay, Miami-Dade, Hillsborough and Walton. The grants are awarded annually through a competitive process to communities hosting military installations.

The 2015-2016 Florida Defense Support Task Force Grants were awarded to defense partners in the following counties: Bay, Clay, Santa Rosa and Hillsborough (Tampa Bay Defense Alliance).

A combined $2,450,000 was awarded to 13 communities in the state, helping to protect and improve 19 installations, and furthering Florida’s reputation as the most military friendly state in the nation. For more than 15 years the defense grants have been successful tools in assisting local defense partners in supporting the State’s military installations.

Florida’s military and defense sector is responsible for 9.4 percent – or $73.4 billion – of the Sunshine State’s economy. This translates to more than 758,000 statewide direct and indirect jobs.

Eleven counties received a Defense Reinvestment Grant, which is designed to support relationships between military installations and their community. The total grant award amount of $850,000 will help to protect Florida’s military installations, as well as promote economic diversification strategies in defense dependent communities.

The Defense Infrastructure Grant is awarded to local projects deemed to have a positive impact on the military value of the installation in addition to benefitting the community. Nine counties were awarded $1,600,000 for encroachment, transportation and access, utilities, communications, environment, or security projects.

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