Aaron DiPietro , FFPC  Legislative Affairs Director, gives a summary of this weeks legislative session.

Dear Friends,

Week 6 of the Florida Legislature has come to an end, and we are officially two-thirds of the way through session. As we come to this point of the 2024 Legislative Session, the pace of Tallahassee has definitely slowed in the committee process, while picking up steam in the main chambers of both the House and Senate.

Two major victories crossed the finish line on the House side this week. The Surrendered Infants Protection Act (HB 775), sponsored by Rep. Jennifer Canady expands the window that allows for mothers to give up their newborn babies and to surrender parental rights to enable the child to be adopted. It also expands the list of individuals with whom babies may be left and the locations where they may be surrendered. On Thursday, the House version passed on the full House floor, 117-0!

Secondly, the Pregnancy and Parenting Online Resources Act(HB 415), sponsored by Rep. Berny Jacques was on the House floor as well. This bill mandates several state agencies create an online portal listing links to numerous public and private pregnancy and parenting resources for new parents, including mothers with unplanned pregnancies. Resources linked will include adoption services, maternal health services, social support, and other pregnancy-related resources to help provide care for new parents.

Legislative Affairs Director Aaron DiPietro watches as Representative Berny Jacques presents his bill.

Shockingly, after receiving bipartisan support in multiple committees, proabortion Democrats began cross-examining Rep. Jacques on the details covered in his bill to ask and why abortion was not included in the list of services included in the resources. Additional hostility arose when it became evident that prolife pregnancy centers within the Florida Pregnancy Care Network would be included but proabortion sites would not be. Rep. Jacques deftly responded to the political attacks and brought the focus back to the original intent of the bill which is to provide a comprehensive one-stop source for pregnancy and parenting resources to Florida citizens. Gratefully, the House version passed the full House floor, 83-33, shortly thereafter.

You can dive into the details of these and the remainder of our priority bills in the PDF link here. We have included the latest on the bills that the Florida Family Policy Council is tracking this session. Links to bill language, committee votes, and staff reviews are also provided by each bill.

For real-time updates follow us on TwitterFacebookInstagram, and Youtube, or sign up for email and text alerts here.

As we continue through this exciting legislative session, stay tuned to the Insider’s Report as your comprehensive guide to the victories we are seeing at the Capitol. Stay tuned for in-depth analyses, interviews, and exclusive insights into the legislative advancements that reflect our unwavering commitment to family, faith, and freedom. The Florida Family Policy Council remains at the forefront of advocacy, working tirelessly to ensure that the values we hold dear are reflected in the laws that govern our great state.

I am grateful to serve on the frontlines in Tallahassee as I represent FFPC full-time during the session, engaging with legislators, testifying in committees, and working to advance our priority bills through the process. Thank you again for your prayers and support, without which we would not be able to engage in this critical fight.

For liberty and justice for all under God,

Aaron DiPietro
Legislative Affairs Director, Florida Family Policy Council

Director, Kevin Baird, D.Min.
Deputy Director, Tracie Baird

Week #6 of the Florida Capitol Project offered opportunities to provide more personal ministry moments with our elected officials. The vision of FCP is to create a bridge for the Church and its leaders to engage with civic government, but also to provide pastoral concern and counseling as need arises. As you might imagine, these personal ministry moments are not always appropriate to capture with photographs.

Few people understand the mental and spiritual toll civic service takes on a person trying to represent their districts, constituencies, and God in an integral manner. Our Florida civic representatives make $29,697 a year (which, by the way, hasn’t changed in 3 decades). No matter which side of the political aisle an official may identify with, I have found their hearts to be one of genuine service and a desire to help people. We may have our deep disagreements on what that looks like, but these are generally people who feel a “calling” to serve in this capacity. As they serve, many are still attempting to juggle on-going responsibilities we all have in this life. Some are business owners or employed by a business that continues while they serve. Most have marriages and families which need their attention and support. For weeks, many of them are away from their community support systems which the rest of us take for granted. It is a sacrifice in many ways to serve at the state capitol. It is important that the spiritual shepherds of Florida have opportunities to minister, encourage, and pray for these representatives’ needs.

As a 5-year veteran minister at the state capitol, I can assure you the personal conversations and counseling moments are plenteous. A pastor’s presence is appreciated and often times providential in many of these offices. As I have often said, “Elected leaders are people too!” Personal needs in family and business are not suspended due to their legislative service. It really is fertile ground for the Gospel ministry.

Find a few moments this week to pray for your state senator and representative, the executive branch, and the state supreme court. Better government begins when God’s people pray and God’s shepherds participate at the gate of their state.

To find out more about this important work, please visit our website: www.floridacapitolproject.org

Everything you need to know to register is found on the website. If you have questions about anything, do not hesitate to contact Dr. Kevin Baird at the cell number or email address provided. If you are a church member who believes your pastor might be interested in an incredible ministry opportunity, please forward the website and our information. I would love to answer any questions they might have.

Florida Family Policy Council
P.O. Box 530103
Orlando, Florida 32853-0103
[email protected]
Phone:  407-251-5130

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