Jan 9, 2024 - News

Florida Republicans set goals for legislative session

Photo illustration of the Florida State Capitol building with lines radiating from it.

Photo illustration: Axios Visuals; Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Gov. Ron DeSantis urged Republican lawmakers to "stay the course" as the Florida legislative session kicked off Tuesday.

  • But he appeared to show a more hands-off approach as his presidential campaign faces do-or-die pressure in Iowa.

Driving the news: During his annual State of the State address, DeSantis slammed President Biden and the liberal policies of other states that he says sparked a mass migration to Florida.

  • He also rattled off policy wins like the banning of diversity, equity and inclusion policies on college campuses and the conservative takeover of New College of Florida.
  • But unlike in years past, DeSantis did not use his speech to set the tone for the legislative session by urging support for his policy goals.

Instead, House Speaker Paul Renner (R-Palm Coast) and Senate President Kathleen Passidomo (R-Naples) laid out their priorities for the 60-day session.

Yes, but: DeSantis did say he hopes to make it easier for Jewish university students wishing to transfer to Florida schools amid concerns over antisemitism on college campuses.

The intrigue: Two of the most controversial bills filed ahead of session don't appear to have the support of leadership.

Zoom in: Condo owners in Miami should keep an eye out on Senate Bill 1178, which would make it harder for condominium associations to sue unit owners and require them to hold more meetings and post documents online.

  • The bill, co-sponsored by Sunny Isles Beach Democrat Sen. Jason Pizzo, would also require board members to take community association law courses.

What they're saying: Passidomo told reporters yesterday that the Miami delegation is concerned about elderly residents facing steep condo assessments following the Surfside condo collapse and resulting condo safety legislation.

  • "I don't know the answer, but I think we really have to look at it carefully and see what we can do," she said.
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