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Governor Ron DeSantis announces more than 2,265 bonuses awarded to new law enforcement recruits in the first year of the program

Officer Mercedes Phillips joined the Cape Coral Police Department because of the bonus | Photo courtesy Office of Governor Ron DeSantis

Press release from the Office of Governor Ron DeSantis

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced that Florida has issued more than 2,265 bonuses in one year through the Florida Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Program, with new recruits and law enforcement officers moving to Florida from 48 states and two U.S. territories, including 230 from California, New York, and Pennsylvania. Each of the more than 2,265 law enforcement officers received a $5,000 bonus after taxes, bringing the total amount awarded to more than $15 million through the program in fiscal year 2022-2023.

Watch Officer Phillips’ story

“Through the Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Program, we are ensuring that our law enforcement officers don’t have to think twice about the decision to support their families in a state that puts them first,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “Florida’s law enforcement officers put their lives on the line every day to protect our communities, and I am proud that Florida’s reputation proceeds itself as 668 out-of-state law enforcement recruits have chosen to practice this noble profession in Florida.”

“Governor DeSantis has shown again that there’s no such thing as taking a day off when it comes to supporting Florida’s law enforcement because there’s no such thing as taking a day off from strengthening public safety and keeping Florida’s crime rate at its record 50-year low,” said J. Alex Kelly, Secretary of the Florida Department of Commerce. “Florida’s national model law enforcement recruitment efforts, in tandem with another year’s legislative funding for first responder bonuses and the Governor’s recent signing of his third consecutive anti-crime, pro-public safety legislative package, is a full court press to keep Florida safe and empower those brave men and women who keep Floridians from harm’s way.”

This successful program encourages Floridians to join the profession and attracts out-of-state recruits or experienced officers to relocate to Florida. To date, 668 law enforcement recruits from 48 states and two U.S. territories have relocated to Florida, including 230 from California, New York, and Pennsylvania.

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.

For more information about the Florida Law Enforcement Recruitment Bonus Payment Program, visit www.FloridaJobs.org/Recognition-and-Recruitment.

  • First off, I personally don’t want an officer who joined the police department “because of the bonus.” Nor, do I want a female police officer when I need help. I know this will elicit reams of screams from the left, but I am speaking here as a woman. Men have more muscle mass and up to a third more bone density than women and that’s just biology. It’s what makes them stronger, bigger, and better able to deal with criminals.

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