Friday, May 4, 2012
The state of Florida will have $4.6 million to spend on programs supporting its defense installations in the fiscal year starting July 1. Funding includes money for three grant programs and the Florida Defense Support Task Force, The task force was created last year by the legislature to help the state prepare for a future BRAC round and attract more R&D and other defense activities. The state last year allocated $5 million for the task force, and the FY 2012-2013 budget adds $2 million more. The grant programs will get $2.6 million. Florida is home to 21 military bases and missions, making defense Florida's third-largest job producer. The state's military presence brings $58 billion into its economy annually. (Source: Defense Communities, 05/04/12) Northwest Florida is home to Naval Air Station Pensacola, Corry Station, Naval Air Station Whiting Field, Hurlburt Field, Duke Field, Eglin Air Force Base, Tyndall Air Force Base and Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City.