Rep. Steve Crisafulli Year End Legislative Update

By  //  December 24, 2013

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Issue NO. 9 • December 2013


Florida’s Economy Continues to Improve

EDITOR’S NOTE: State Rep. Steve Crisafulli (R), Merritt Island, is House Majority Leader and designated to be the speaker of the House for the 2014-2015 legislative sessions.

We’re ending the year with positive economic news, as the Department of Economic Opportunity released the state’s employment numbers for November, showing Florida’s economy is continuing to make great progress. The unemployment rate for November was 6.4 percent, down 0.3 percent from October and 1.6 percent from this time last year.

This is the lowest rate our state has seen in five years!Here in Brevard County, our unemployment rate improved to 6.8 percent, down from 7.0 percent in October. To put this into perspective, at this time last year, Brevard’s unemployment rate stood at 8.4 percent.

Florida’s unemployment rate is also below the national rate for the ninth consecutive month. This is further proof that our pro-growth economic policies are working and helping to make Florida a national economic leader.

Florida continues to be a leader in job creation. Since this time last year, Florida has added over 183,000 jobs – and over 446,000 jobs since December 2010. This gives Florida a growth rate of 2.5 percent – the fastest we have seen since June 2006. Florida’s annual growth rate has also exceeded or been equal to the national growth rate since March of this year.

These numbers show that our state’s focus on economic growth and creating an environment for job creation is truly making a difference. And, keep in mind that we are adding jobs and lowering the unemployment rate while reducing the state’s debt and keeping taxes low for Florida’s families and businesses.

This is exciting news, and I am optimistic that our economy, both at the state and local level, will continue to improve in 2014, providing more jobs and opportunities for Florida families.

Florida Must Take A Statewide Approach to Address Water Issues

As we all know first-hand from the problems plaguing the Indian River Lagoon here in Brevard County, water is an issue that must be addressed by policymakers. I believe this must be a priority for the Florida Legislature, so earlier this month, I wrote an opinion editorial that was featured in many newspapers across the state calling for a comprehensive, statewide approach to address the challenges facing our water supply.

I invite you to read the full article here. I will be sure to keep you updated on water issues as we enter the 2014 Legislative Session.

Florida Senate Designates Andy Gardiner Next President

Earlier this month, the Florida Senate Republican Caucus convened to designate Senator Andy Gardiner as the next President of the Senate for the 2014-2016 legislative term.

Andy is a proven leader and has served as a strong, principled voice for his constituents throughout his time in the Legislature. Senator Gardiner will serve as Senate President at the same time as I will serve as Speaker of the House.

Not only do we both represent Brevard County in our districts, but most importantly, we also share the same values and a steadfast commitment to making Florida an even better state for future generations. I look forward to the years we will work together as leaders of the Legislature and to the good public policy we will advance during that time.

Brevard’s High School Graduation Rate Increases

The Florida Department of Education released 2012-2013 graduation rates this month. I am happy to announce Brevard’s graduation rate went up 2.2 percent, doubling the statewide average increase of 1.1 percent!

Overall, Brevard County posted the 5th highest graduation rate in the state, the 5th highest graduation rate in the state for African-American students, and the 3rd highest graduation rate in the state for Hispanic students.

Thank you to all of the teachers and administrators who work hard in our great schools to provide our children with an outstanding education, and congratulations to Brevard’s students, who continue to achieve more and more every year.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

As the holiday season continues, I hope all of you will be able to enjoy this special time with your families and friends. I want to thank everyone for the opportunity to serve as your State Representative, and I am looking forward to working hard for you in the upcoming year.Best wishes for a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Kristen, the girls, and I.

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Also, for updates on House District 51, be sure to follow me on Facebook (Steve Crisafulli) and Twitter (@SteveCrisafulli). Links to follow me on social media can be found below.

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions or concerns. My door is always open. Be sure to follow me on Facebook for regular updates on news affecting House District 51.