MY VIEW: Florida’s economic success starts with families

Since my first day as a state legislator, my guiding principle has been that the well-being and prosperity of Central Florida’s families should be the North Star of our economic policies.

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  • | 11:06 a.m. September 11, 2023
  • West Orange Times & Observer
  • Opinion
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Since my first day as a state legislator, my guiding principle has been that the well-being and prosperity of Central Florida’s families should be the North Star of our economic policies. This attitude is rooted in my own journey.

Like so many Floridians, my family and I fled socialism and came to this country with little more than the clothes on our backs. We have had our ups and downs over the years, but through hard work and perseverance, we were able to achieve the American Dream right here in the Sunshine State. I am working tirelessly to ensure everyone in Central Florida has the chance to support a family and live a decent life.

The success of our family-friendly policies is being noticed across the country and should make every Floridian proud. For instance, CNBC recently recognized Florida as the country’s No. 1 economy. Last year, U.S. News & World Report said the Sunshine State had the most affordable colleges and universities in the country.

Our state's GDP growth of 4% and job growth of 4.9% are not merely statistics that outpace the national averages; they illustrate our dedication to creating a thriving economy that uplifts and supports working people. As a state representative, my commitment has always been to prioritize the well-being of families and empower local communities. The Legislature’s record-breaking $2.7 billion tax relief package that I proudly backed exemplifies this dedication, providing much-needed relief to hardworking Floridians facing the challenges of national inflation.

Family financial wellness has been at the heart of our legislative efforts. I supported our sales tax holidays and permanent sales tax exemptions for essential family items, such as strollers and baby food, to provide families with some breathing room in their budgets. By allowing families to keep more of their hard-earned money, we stimulate consumer spending and drive local business growth, all while putting families first in our economy.

It brings me immense joy to know that $1 million of the $14 million I worked to secure for Central Florida during this legislative session will support Florida Early Learning Corps. This program plays a pivotal role in nurturing our youngest residents, providing them with the care and education they deserve during their formative years. Early childhood development is a priority for me, and this funding ensures that every child receives the support they need for a bright and promising future.

I also want families to have a great quality of life in the Sunshine State. Florida's Freedom Summer sales tax holiday encourages an active lifestyle and fosters a sense of community for families across our state. Our residents can now save on outdoor supplies, sports equipment, and event tickets, making Florida a vibrant place to live, work, and play with loved ones.

Safety and security are paramount concerns for every family. That's why I fought to secure $2 million for our law enforcement. We entrust our brave men and women in uniform to protect and serve, ensuring that families can feel safe in their communities and build a secure future.

As we have seen, Washington’s reckless spending drives inflation and hurts our country’s creditworthiness. That’s why we in the Legislature work hard to live within our means and balance the budget. Our efforts have resulted in Florida enjoying a coveted AAA debt rating, which exemplifies our state's trustworthiness and stability. This attracts investment and ensures our continued growth, all while safeguarding the interests of families.

Our recent achievements are indeed something to celebrate, but they are just the beginning. As a state representative, I remain committed to strengthening Florida's economy and enhancing the well-being of every family in our community. Together, we will continue to thrive on unity, empowerment, and resilience, with families at the heart of our vision for a prosperous future.

I am proud of Florida's economic triumphs and extend my heartfelt gratitude to all the hardworking Floridians who have contributed to our success. Together, we will continue to shine as a beacon of hope and progress for the entire nation, building a legacy that puts families first in Florida's journey toward a prosperous future.

Rep. Carolina Amesty represents Florida’s 45th District in the Florida House of Representatives.


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