Florida Senate - 2024                              CS for SB 544
       By the Committee on Health Policy; and Senators Hutson, Berman,
       and Book
       588-02171-24                                           2024544c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the Swimming Lesson Voucher
    3         Program; creating s. 514.073, F.S.; creating the
    4         program within the Department of Health for a
    5         specified purpose; requiring the department to
    6         contract with and establish a network of swimming
    7         lesson vendors to participate in the program;
    8         requiring the department to attempt to secure a vendor
    9         in each county; requiring certain vendors to
   10         participate in the program if requested by the
   11         department; requiring the department to establish an
   12         application process; specifying eligibility criteria
   13         for the program; providing that the program is subject
   14         to specific appropriation; authorizing the department
   15         to seek grants or other public and private funding for
   16         the program; requiring the department to adopt rules;
   17         providing an appropriation; providing an effective
   18         date.
   20  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   22         Section 1. Section 514.073, Florida Statutes, is created to
   23  read:
   24         514.073 Swimming Lesson Voucher Program.—
   25         (1)There is created within the department the Swimming
   26  Lesson Voucher Program. The purpose of the program is to
   27  increase water safety in this state by offering vouchers for
   28  swimming lessons at no cost to families with an income of no
   29  more than 200 percent of the federal poverty level who have one
   30  or more children 4 years of age or younger.
   31         (2)The department shall do all of the following to
   32  implement the program:
   33         (a)Contract with and establish a network of swimming
   34  lesson vendors that will accept the vouchers offered by the
   35  program in exchange for providing swimming lessons. To ensure
   36  that the swimming lessons are available throughout this state,
   37  the department must attempt to secure at least one such vendor
   38  in each county. Any swimming lesson vendor that offers swimming
   39  lessons at a public pool that is owned or maintained by a county
   40  or municipality must, if requested by the department,
   41  participate in the program.
   42         (b)Establish a method for members of the public to apply
   43  for swimming lesson vouchers and for determining an applicant’s
   44  eligibility. The department shall establish eligibility criteria
   45  necessary for a family to receive one or more vouchers from the
   46  program, including, but not limited to, the following:
   47         1.The age of each child for whom a voucher is being
   48  sought, who may be no more than 4 years of age.
   49         2.The family income level, which may be up to 200 percent
   50  of the federal poverty level.
   51         3.The family’s address of residency in this state.
   52         (c)Subject to specific appropriation, issue vouchers to
   53  eligible applicants.
   54         (3)The department may seek grants or other public or
   55  private funding for the program.
   56         (4)The department shall adopt rules to implement the
   57  program.
   58         Section 2. For the 2024-2025 fiscal year, the sum of
   59  $500,000 in nonrecurring funds is appropriated from the General
   60  Revenue Fund to the Department of Health to fund the Swimming
   61  Lesson Voucher Program established by this act.
   62         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2024.