Issues of Interest

REAL ID The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has once again delayed the deadline for all domestic travelers to have Real ID driver’s licenses and identification cards. By May 7, 2025 all domestic travelers 18 years or older will need either a state-issued Real ID-compliant license or identification card or other TSA-acceptable form of identification at airport security checkpoints. All 50 states and U.S. Territories are issuing Real ID compliant cards.  

MARRIAGE RIGHTS On December 13th, President Joe Biden signed into law a bill which ensures same sex and interracial marriages are recognized nationwide. The United States Congress passed the bills with bipartisan support.  

STATE INVESTMENTS Beginning in 2023, Florida will divest $2 billion invested for the state by BlackRock because the money manager uses the investment principles known as Environmental, Social and Governance standards.  

STATE REVENUES In spite of two major hurricanes and growing inflation, Florida’s general revenue collections for October were 4.6 percent higher than the August estimate. Florida took in $2.1 billion in sales tax revenue. Economists predict the increased sales tax may be a result of higher prices due to ballooning inflation.  

HURRICANE UPDATES Florida continues to recover from Hurricanes Ian and Nicole this past fall. To date:  
-Insurance Losses – Hurricane Ian is projected to have caused over $65 billion in insured losses, making 2022 the third most expensive hurricane season on record.
-Disaster Fund Relief – The Florida Disaster Fund has collected over $60 million in donations to help Floridians impacted by Hurricane Ian.
-Debris Collection – Lee County crews cleared more than 3,500 miles of roadways and continue to collect over 60,000 cubic yards of roadside debris on a daily basis. This would fill the Hertz Arena ten times. Hillsborough County collected over 630,000 cubic yards of tree limbs and brush, which they say would normally be three years’ worth of debris.
– Online Recovery Resources – The Unite Florida Recovery Portal connects Floridians impacted by Hurricane Ian to important recovery resources, including housing support. It provides temporary sheltering options — such as travel trailers and recreational vehicles — and temporary or permanent repairs for households whose needs are not met through insurance or FEMA’s Individual Assistance program. It can be found here.
-FEMA Hurricane Application Deadlines – The deadline has been extended to January 12, 2023. It can be found here.
-Agriculture Industry – The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services has estimated that Hurricane Ian inflicted $1.18 billion to $1.9 billion in damages.