TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Governor Ron DeSantis announced more than 600 bonuses have been awarded to newly employed law enforcement recruits since the launch of the Florida Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Program. Florida’s first-of-its-kind program is part of the strongest law enforcement support initiative in the nation and awards a one-time bonus payment of $5,000, after taxes, to each newly employed officer within the state. To date, a majority of the bonuses awarded have been issued to recruits with the remaining checks expected to be paid by the end of the week.
“Law enforcement officers are choosing Florida because we have delivered on our promise to back the men and women who keep Florida families safe and that message has been heard loud and clear across the nation,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “We are proud to welcome law enforcement officers from across the nation to Florida and are grateful for the Floridians who have chosen this important vocation.”
“Under Governor DeSantis’ leadership, Florida’s law-and-order policies and strong support of law enforcement are attracting the best and the brightest law enforcement officers to serve the state,” said Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) Secretary Dane Eagle. “Through the Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Payment Program, law enforcement officers are transitioning into this incredibly rewarding profession in a state that appreciates their heroic service to Florida’s communities.”
Following Hurricane Ian, Governor DeSantis visited the City of Cape Coral in Lee County to hand-deliver the first set of recruitment bonuses to six newly recruited officers and meet with officers from the Cape Coral Police Department. The six officers that received recruitment bonus checks were sworn in prior to Hurricane Ian and served the community during response and recovery efforts. Of the six officers, two relocated from New York, one relocated from Maryland, one relocated from Georgia, and two are new to the profession.
In addition to a $5,000 recruitment bonus, benefits of becoming a Florida law enforcement officer include financial stability, upward mobility, excellent health and retirement benefits, student loan forgiveness programs, home loan programs, and more.
During the 2022 Legislative Session, Governor DeSantis signed House Bill 3, a sweeping law enforcement recruitment and retention bill, which included $20 million for the Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Payment Program. Coupled with Florida’s law-and-order policies and Freedom First Budget, the program reinforces Florida’s position as the best state in the nation to be a sworn law enforcement officer. The program encourages Floridians to join the law enforcement profession and out-of-state law enforcement professionals to bring their skills to the Sunshine State.
For more information about the Florida Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Payment Program and the Florida Essential First Responder Recognition Payment Program First Responder Recognition Bonuses, visit www.FloridaJobs.org/
Media Release: Office of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, Image: NBC