Clay, Duval Among 6 Counties To Get Grants To Help Military Installations
Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced the award of grants totaling $725,000 to projects intended to assist several military installations in the state.
The Florida Defense Support Task Force awarded grants to the Clay County Development Authority, the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, and school districts in Duval, Hillsborough and Okaloosa counties.
The largest grant, $500,000, will provide a buffer from “incompatible” land development in Clay County around Camp Blanding, where Florida National Guard troops are trained.
Josh Cockrell, executive director of the Clay County Development Authority, said in a press release the buffer will secure the base from “future development and encroachment, thus protecting the installation that comprises almost one-fifth of the county and is tied to its economic viability.”
A $100,000 grant goes to the Military Child Education Coalition, and is targeted to school districts in Duval, Hillsborough and Okaloosa counties.
Florida has more than 93,000 children who are connected to the military, Jack Ballentyne, the coalition’s senior vice president and chief operating officer, said in the release.
The $125,000 grant to Brevard County goes for an effort to identify “opportunities and resources by producing a detailed assessment of the conditions of critical infrastructure supporting Eastern Range space operations,” according to the press release issued by DeSantis’ office.
The Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, which received the grant, is home to the 45th Space Wing, “which includes 27 mission partners plus tenants at Patrick Air Force Base … and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station,” the release said.
DeSantis announced the grants on Friday.