DeSantis Pays Off Florida's Debt Early, Taxpayers Save Millions

DeSantis Pays Off Florida's Debt Early, Taxpayers Save Millions

Fiscal conservatism could win DeSantis the 2024 primary

Jim McCool
Jim McCool
July 19, 2023

Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) has announced that the state of Florida has paid off debt early, which he claims will save taxpayers $34 million.

The Debt Reduction Program is the reason the debt was paid off so early.  As part of his "Framework for Freedom Budget," the Governor championed the program that he insists serves to reduce state debt by accelerating the payoff of bonds prior to maturity, avoiding subsequent interest costs. The early payoff announced today will save Florida taxpayers nearly $34 million.

The Framework for Freedom Budget established the Debt Reduction Program within the Division of Bond Finance. The Division completed two transactions over the past week to support the retirement of outstanding taxable Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO) and State Revolving Fund (SRF) bonds. The transactions were effectuated by utilizing the $200 million in appropriated funds, along with additional available funding, to pay down $400 million in state debt prior to maturity, generating nearly $34 million in savings to taxpayers.

“While Washington has governed irresponsibly and ballooned the national debt, the Free State of Florida is providing a blueprint for fiscal responsibility,” stated DeSantis. “We put Floridians front and center in every decision we make and are proud to continue saving them money through smart fiscal policy.”

Since Governor DeSantis has taken office in 2019, the state of Florida has reported paying off roughly $5 billion in debt.  During this same time period the United States at large has accumulated another $10 trillion in debt. The issue of fiscal conservatism should assist in putting DeSantis ahead in a crowded GOP primary field where former President Trump (R) has a proven record of not reducing the national deficit.

While usually fighting the culture war, DeSantis has the opportunity to win over more moderate voters by touting his record on reduced spending and debt reduction, while running to the right of Trump at the same time.  The United States currently faces over $30 trillion in debt.

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Jim McCool

Jim McCool

Jim is a graduate of Florida State University where he studied Political Science, Religion and Criminology. He has been a reporter for the Floridian since January of 2021 and will start law school in 2024.

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