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Florida Governor Ron DeSantis Hasn't Wasted Time in Enacting his "Bold Agenda" for the State

Photo: Flickr Creative Commons
Photo: Flickr Creative Commons

Today marks two weeks since Governor Ron DeSantis was sworn into office and Florida’s newly-minted leader has wasted no time taking on significant issues facing the state.

On his first full day in office, DeSantis named his first state Supreme Court justice pick, Miami appellate court judge Barbara Lagoa. Since then, he’s made his second appointment, Robert Luck, also a conservative-minded Miami jurist.

Within his first week, DeSantis unveiled a sweeping executive order aimed at improving Florida’s environment and water quality. The order directs $2.5 billion dollars toward addressing issues like Everglades restoration and problems with toxic algae.

The first Clemency Board meeting of his tenure saw long-sought posthumous pardons granted to four African-American men accused of raping a white woman in a 1949 case now viewed as a racial injustice. Of the men known as the Groveland Four, one was killed before he could be charged and the other three were convicted on dubious evidence. Two of the men were shot – one fatally – by the Lake County sheriff on their way to a retrial.

DeSantis confronted the state’s languishing medical marijuana laws late last week, when he gave state lawmakers a mid-March deadline to end a ban on smokable medical marijuana and loosen limits on treatment center licenses. He announced a plan to drop challenges to related lawsuits if the legislatures fail to act, effectively leaving the issue up to the courts.

Danielle Prieur is WMFE's education reporter.