Florida Pass G-I Bill, Awaits Governor’s Signature

Photo courtesy of the VA.

Photo courtesy of the VA.

It’s taken three attempts, but Florida student veterans will soon be granted in-state tuition waivers if the governor signs the newly passed legislation. All indications are that he will.

The Florida Legislature on Tuesday passed the “Florida GI” bill which among other things offers a tuition break to honorably discharged veterans regardless of when they moved to the state. It also includes college scholarships for National Guard members.

The legislation also funds renovations at various armories and pays to acquire land adjacent to existing military installations like Tampa’s MacDill Air Force Base to prevent encroachment.

The goal was to make Florida “number one” place for veterans. The state is home to about 1.5 million veterans, and there is an estimated 61,000 active military personnel stationed in the state.

Senator Garrett Richter, a military vet himself, said returning veterans bring a unique skill set to the private sector, and the state should welcome them.

“Many military retirees are young. They have great leadership skills,” Richter said. “They have an outstanding work ethic, and we want to encourage them to make Florida their home over any other state.”

Governor Rick Scott said Tuesday he’s looking forward to signing it into law.

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