Florida Legislative Leaders Mulling Emergency Appropriation To Fight Coronavirus Spread

Mar 4, 2020
Originally published on March 3, 2020 1:56 pm

Senate President Bill Galvano says Florida legislative leadership is in talks with Governor Ron DeSantis about an emergency appropriation to fortify agencies working to combat the spread of coronavirus. Galvano didn’t give many details, but told reporters after Tuesday’s floor session the specifics are being worked out.

"The governor spoke with me, my understanding is he also spoke with the (House) Speaker, and we have both committed to work with him on that issue," Galvano said. "Naturally, he has his emergency powers, but if we need to fill in to the budget some opportunity for additional funding to address the coronavirus then we absolutely will do that."

Galvano says initial discussions indicate the allocation would look something like $10-$20 million. He couldn’t say if the bulk of that would be earmarked for the Florida Department of Health.

DeSantis on Tuesday afternoon confirmed the state has a new "presumptive positive" case of coronavirus, a family member of one of the prior two confirmed cases. The new case makes two in Hillsborough County, the lone other confirmed case of COVID-19 is in Manatee County.

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