“DeSantis Claus” Comes to Hamilton County – And Leaves a Gift of $5.4 Million To Improve Local Infrastructure

Toby Hazlewood

A regional windfall from Governor 'DeSanta'!

Governor Ron DeSantis of Florida visited Hamilton County, Florida on April 5 and during a press conference revealed part of his purpose in being there - to announce $5.4 million of funding intended to strengthen the region's public infrastructure and to support manufacturing in the area.

DeSantis Claus and DeSanta - alter egos?

Speaking to the press, Governor DeSantis joked:

"You know when I come, I usually don't come empty-handed. So today for Hamilton County, DeSantis Clause is coming to town,"

The persona of DeSantis Claus or 'DeSanta' is one that the governor has previously used, jokingly.

Towards the end of 2021 he launched a range of branded merchandise via his own fundraising website, featuring stylized images of himself as 'DeSanta - saving Christmas and keeping Florida safe'.

It was an apparent reference to him having preserved freedoms in Florida during the pandemic.

The governor was also keen to share news of the windfall for Hamilton County on Twitter:

The money will create jobs

The funds will come from Florida's Job Growth Grant Fund and the money will likely be welcome. One project that's due to be financed from the grant, will be an $880,000 crossroad Hamilton County volunteer fire station.

The investment is well-timed. Late last month, House Speaker and Democrat, Nancy Pelosi spoke at an event in Palm Beach County - she was critical in her speech of the lack of infrastructure investment in Florida. She pointed out that long-term neglect of roads and bridges in the state had left much of the infrastructure in need of repair and replacement.

As might be expected, Pelosi used the press conference as an opportunity to point out $550 billion of federal infrastructure investment that the Biden Administration introduced last year and which received full bipartisan support.

The federal funds are welcome, as will be the money announced by Governor DeSantis on April 5. How quickly all these funds make a difference, remains to be seen.

Do you think Governor DeSantis is right to portray this investment as being a gift from him as 'DeSanta'? Do you believe that the state's infrastructure is receiving enough investment from state and federal governments? Let me know in the comments section below.

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