Sworn law enforcement officers, firefighters and emergency medical technicians (EMTs) would get a one-time $1,000 for working during the COVID-19 pandemic under a plan proposed by Gov. Ron DeSantis. Revenue for the bonuses would be derived from federal funds awarded to Florida under the COVID-19 Relief Bill.
“We don’t know exactly how much we’re going to get because it is tied to unemployment, but we expect it to be between $9 and 10 billion,” DeSantis said during a press conference in Tallahassee on March 16.
The bonuses, which will be made one-time cash payouts, recognize the performance of Florida’s first responders during the pandemic.
“We know that the pandemic put an awful lot of strain on our first responders – sworn law enforcement, EMTs, firefighters,” DeSantis said. “We believe we should recognize their sacrifice over the last year.”
All told, the bonus payments will total about $208.4 million and be administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and “other agencies,” he said.
Exactly how much of that bonus revenue will fall to first responders in Hernando County is still uncertain.