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What You Missed: Sheriffs Day at the Capitol 2023

May 01, 2023

Each year, Florida’s sheriffs gather at the state Capitol to serve as public safety subject matter experts for state legislators and to advocate for legislation that will continue leading to safe communities for Florida’s residents and visitors.  The event, called Sheriffs Day at the Capitol, connects the important work of our sheriffs with legislators, their staffs and the public. 

To maintain a low crime rate, this advocacy work is a full-time job for the sheriffs throughout the year, but there is something special about having our sheriffs together as a united front in-person to push for laws that keep you and your family safe from danger. This year’s event was also unique as it involved the community in a new way. Here are a few highlights you might have missed.

Legislative Priorities

One of the Florida Sheriffs Association’s primary roles and responsibilities is to support and monitor legislation that ensures public safety in Florida. Both during the legislative session and throughout the year, FSA’s legislative team is actively working with lawmakers to ensure that bills are introduced and passed that are in the best interests of Florida citizens and protect the ability of Florida law enforcement to keep communities safe. 

This year, over 40 sheriffs came to the state Capitol on March 23 to meet with legislators and officials that included House Speaker Paul Renner and Senate President Kathleen Passidomo. The meetings focused on the sheriffs’ priorities and what needs to be done to keep Florida’s crime rate at historic lows. 

FSA’s 2023 legislative priorities include: 

  • Solidifying the elected and independent Office of the Sheriff
  • Funding for Rapid DNA systems in county jails
  • Improving the Florida Retirement System for Special Risk Class Members

You can read more about FSA’s legislative priorities – and learn how you can get involved – here. You can also keep up with FSA’s latest legislative work and updates by subscribing to our podcast, the FSACAST.

Lunch With Your Sheriffs

This year, Sheriff’s Day at the Capitol had an exciting new element – inviting the public to have lunch with their sheriffs. While creating opportunities for sheriffs and community members to connect was the main goal, the delicious barbecue lunch didn’t hurt, either. Nearly 1,000 community members and legislative staffers attended this exciting event.

Also at the event, sheriffs from across the state brought K9s and horses to engage with attendees, giving people an opportunity to check out vehicles and other equipment to better understand the jobs that our deputies are doing. 

Support the FSA

The mission of the Florida Sheriffs Association as a self-sustaining, charitable organization is to foster the effectiveness of the Office of Sheriff through leadership, education and training, innovative practices and legislative initiatives, including the annual Sheriffs Day at the Capitol.

Joining the Florida Sheriffs Association is a tangible way to express your support for the work that our sheriffs do to protect families like yours every day. As a Florida Sheriffs Association member, you’ll help:

  • Provide state-of-the-art training for sheriffs, deputies and staff
  • Supply bullet-proof vests to deputies
  • Promote public safety and crime prevention while advocating for laws that protect victims' rights and enhance public safety
  • Coordinate the Florida Sheriffs Task Force and enable the sharing of equipment, technology and other key assets
  • Support Florida youth through scholarships, the Teen Driver Challenge and the Florida Sheriffs Youth Ranches
  • Sustain the Criminal Apprehension Assistance Program, the Cold Case Advisory Commission and many other programs

Join your friends and neighbors and become a member now.