Governor Ron DeSantis Secures Record Investment for Everglades Restoration and Water Quality

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Governor Ron DeSantis Secures Record Investment for Everglades Restoration and Water Quality

~ The Focus on Florida’s Future Budget makes key investments to safeguard Florida’s coastlines and beaches, conserve natural landscapes and promote outdoor recreation ~

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – This week, Governor Ron DeSantis signed the Focus on Florida’s Future Budget for Fiscal Year 2024-25, representing the most significant single-year investment in Everglades restoration projects in Florida’s history. The budget invests a historic $3.1 billion to continue the state’s momentum to expedite critical Everglades Restoration projects, employ sound science to protect and restore Florida’s waterways, and fund infrastructure projects to improve Florida’s water quality and supply.

“Governor DeSantis has once again demonstrated his strong commitment to Florida’s environment by funding critical, scientifically sound projects to protect and restore our water quality, fortify our coastlines and expand our unrivaled conservation lands,” said DEP Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “Over the coming year, we look forward to maintaining our momentum in these efforts, including expediting projects to restore Florida’s Everglades, funding projects through the Resilient Florida Grant Program and delivering on the Governor’s vision of increasing public access to our conservation lands through additional outdoor recreation, camping and lodging options at Florida’s award-winning state parks. The prioritization and investment in Florida’s environmental protection goals have made them a reality now and in the future. I am excited for DEP and our partners to maintain this momentum for Florida’s residents, visitors, resources and economy.”

The budget emphasizes key priorities for achieving more for Florida’s environment, including:

$850 million for Everglades Restoration, including:

  • $550 million for the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan.
  • $86.7 million for the Northern Everglades and Estuaries Protection Program.
  • $64 million for the EAA Reservoir, a critical project that will reduce harmful discharges and route clean water south of the Everglades.

$535 million for targeted water quality improvements, including:

  • $110 million for the Water Quality Improvement Grant Program, which funds projects to construct, upgrade or expand wastewater facilities, including septic-to-sewer conversions, stormwater management projects and agricultural nutrient reduction projects.
  • $100 million for priority wastewater and stormwater projects that address water quality impairments in the Indian River Lagoon.
  • $25 million for water quality improvements in the Caloosahatchee River watershed.
  • $20 million for wastewater and stormwater projects that address water quality impairments and coral reef restoration in Biscayne Bay.

$281.5 million for coastal and inland resilience, including:

  • $225 million for implementation of statewide resilience projects.
  • $57 million for resilience planning and coral reef protection.

$55 million to restore Florida’s world-renowned springs.

$40 million to combat harmful algal blooms and red tide across a range of actions, including innovative technology, water quality monitoring, emergency response and research.

$55 million for the Alternative Water Supply Grant Program, which helps local communities plan for and implement water conservation, reuse and other alternative water supply projects.

$156.1 million in Florida’s conservation lands, including:

  • $100 million for Florida Forever, the state’s blueprint for conserving Florida’s prized properties. This funding is in addition to $100 million provided to acquire lands and conservation easements within the Florida Wildlife Corridor in Senate Bill 1638.
  • $15 million for Florida’s award-winning state parks. This funding is in addition to the $36 million provided for state park and trail management in Senate Bill 1638.
  • $15 million for the Florida Communities Trust to acquire community-based parks, open space and greenways that further outdoor recreation and natural resource protection needs.
  • $14.3 million for the Florida Recreation Development Assistance Program, which provides competitive recreational grants to local governments for the acquisition and/or development of land for public outdoor recreation.

$234 million for cleanup programs.

In 2019, Governor DeSantis called for $2.5 billion to be invested over four years for Everglades restoration and water quality. The Governor surpassed that goal by securing over $3.3 billion during his first term. In 2023, Governor DeSantis reinforced his commitment in his second term by calling for a historic $3.5 billion investment for Everglades restoration and protection of water resources. The Focus on Florida’s Future Budget includes more than $1.5 billion for this initiative, bringing the total investment during the Governor’s first two years of his second term to $3.2 billion and the state’s total cumulative commitment to $6.5 billion since the Governor took office.

Learn more about what DEP is doing to protect Florida’s environment and natural resources at