Last Call for 6.23.22 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

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A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday touted record funding for programs that help Floridians with Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias.

“Supporting Floridians suffering from Alzheimer’s and dementia is an important part of supporting our seniors. We are working to make sure that any Floridian suffering from this terrible disease can access resources while also supporting innovative technologies that will open up doors for Alzheimer’s and dementia patients in the future,” DeSantis said.

The state budget, which DeSantis signed earlier this month, included $52.3 million for the Alzheimer’s disease Initiative Program, an increase of $12 million over the 2021-22 budget. Additionally, the Community Care for the Elderly Program was funded at $91.7 million, which is an increase of $9 million year-over-year. 

A news release from the Governor’s office noted that funding for Alzheimer’s and dementia care has increased by 60% since DeSantis took office in 2019. The state has also launched the Florida Alzheimer’s Center of Excellence (FACE), which focuses on enhancing the infrastructure available to support seniors, families, and caregivers impacted by the disease. 

The funding bumps got the spotlight as DeSantis signed one of the final pieces of legislation to hit his desk following the 2022 Session.

The READY Act (SB 806), an acronym for “Ramping up Education of Alzheimer’s disease and Dementia for You Act,” tasks the state Department of Health with educating health care workers about the importance of diagnosing Alzheimer’s early and using cognitive assessment tools, among other things. 

“From day one, Gov. DeSantis has been dedicated to ensuring Florida is a place where citizens can live well and age well. This record funding and the establishment of the Florida Alzheimer’s Center of Excellence (FACE) show the administration’s continued support for investing in a better tomorrow for all Floridians,” Department of Elder Affairs Secretary Michelle Branham said.

“I am especially grateful for the positive impact FACE will have on seniors and their families with early detection, early diagnosis, critical care planning, support, and resources.”

Evening Reads

—“American influence has a new address on State Street” via Hailey Fuchs of POLITICO

—“Florida companies dump millions into backdoor fundraising channel for Ron DeSantis” via Zac Anderson of USA Today Network-Florida

—“DeSantis suggests media ‘mea culpa’ for propping up Andrew Gillum” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics

—“Rick Scott’s warning: Senate gun control bill not like Florida’s law” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics

—”Supreme Court strikes down New York’s concealed carry gun law” via Oriana Gonzalez of Axios

—“The next fight over guns in America” via Timothy Zick and Diana Palmer of The Atlantic

—“Addressing union workers, Nikki Fried says she makes Gov. DeSantis ‘nervous’ during Cabinet meetings” via Issac Morgan of the Florida Phoenix

—“All but one Republican failed last Session, in progressive organizations’ view” via Anne Geggis of Florida Politics

—“Judge gives final approval to ‘remarkable’ $1 billion Surfside condo collapse settlement” via Linda Robertson of the Miami Herald

—“As Corrine Brown runs again for Congress, this time in Orlando, question looms: Can she win?” via Steve Patterson of The Florida Times-Union

—“Orange County Commissioners move forward on rent control and Tenant Bill of Rights” via Stephen Hudak and Carolyn Guniss of the Orlando Sentinel

—“Tampa tradition of baking Cuban bread with palmetto leaves at risk” via Paul Guzzo of the Tampa Bay Times

Quote of the Day

“I would ask a lot of the media that propped him up whether they have any type of mea culpa on that. There clearly were a lot of issues there. If you looked under the hood, you saw it. But what was presented to the public was that this guy was like the second coming.”

— Gov. Ron DeSantis, on Andrew Gillum’s indictment.

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