Freshman Sen. Nick DiCeglie, no stranger to the Florida Legislature after serving in the House since 2018, could be a boon to the Tampa Bay area with committee leadership roles and appointments to powerful committees.
The Indian Rocks Beach Republican, who succeeds fellow Republican Jeff Brandes in the Senate, was tapped to lead the Senate Transportation Committee and to serve as the No. 2 on the Banking and Insurance Committee.
In Banking and Insurance, DiCeglie will have the opportunity to be part of a leadership team tackling a long-standing priority for Florida Republicans, tort reform. The GOP strategy on lowering insurance costs, both auto and property, has been to limit attorney fees and cut back on frivolous lawsuits.
But his leadership on transportation could serve as the biggest boost to his home region, where growing transportation issues, including increasing traffic congestion and aging infrastructure, plagues the region from Tampa to the beaches.
In addition to his leadership roles, DiCeglie will also serve on committees for Agriculture, Environment and General Government appropriations; Transportation, Tourism and Economic Development appropriations; Commerce and Tourism; Fiscal Policy; Judiciary, Rules and the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee.
That list of appointments beefs DiCeglie’s power in the region, giving him voting access to funding measures on transportation and tourism initiatives, both major concerns in the populous and tourism-heavy Tampa Bay region.
His appointments come as part of a sweeping list of committee chair appointments from Senate President Kathleen Passidomo that showed plenty of love for freshman Senators, including Sens. Corey Simon and Erin Grall heading the Education Pre—K12 and Education Postsecondary committees, respectively and Sen. Jay Collins, a fellow Tampa Bay area lawmaker, who is heading the Senate Committee on Agriculture.
Unlike her predecessor, former Senate President Wilton Simpson, Passidomo did not name any Democrats to chair positions. Only Miami Democratic Sen. Jason Pizzo, a former committee head, has a leadership role as an alternate chair for the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee, which he’ll cede after one year to Republican Boca Raton Rep. Mike Caruso.