By Anne Gegis
August 16, 2021
Need to transfer a professional license? Crist would have you covered.
Moving to Florida will become even easier if Charlie Crist has anything to say about it.
Crist, running to replace Gov. Ron DeSantis, announced his intention to create the Office for New Floridians to assist some 900 people who move to Florida every day — nearly 330,000 new Floridians every year.
And Crist’s campaign says the former Republican Governor, now a Democrat, wants to welcome them with “open arms.”
The campaign even has a URL in mind: WelcometoFlorida.gov.
“Sometimes our new neighbors need assistance navigating their new home — and the Office for New Floridians will cut red tape, reduce bureaucracy, and provide essential information and services to ensure every new Floridian can make a successful transition,” a news release from the campaign says.
New Floridians are an essential part of the economy of our state, the news release says.
“They buy houses, open new businesses, send their children to school, and help improve our communities. As Governor, Charlie Crist will make sure our new neighbors get essential assistance to make a successful transition — regardless of whether they’re moving to Florida from another state or another country.”
That will mean helping people with essential tasks like transferring driver’s licenses, motor vehicle registrations, and professional licenses. The office will give new Floridians help setting up new businesses and finding the right schools for their children to attend.
Not only would this new office be open 24 hours a day on the website, but it would also have a hotline and brick-and-mortar centers. Helping skilled professionals and tradespeople get set up would be a particular focus.
Crist is facing an uphill battle trying to unseat the incumbent Governor, who has risen to a national profile. Crist must also defeat Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, also a Democrat, in the Primary Election to get to the Governor’s Mansion.
“Florida currently does not make it easy enough to become a New Floridian. Paperwork, red tape, and bureaucracy create burdens that are too high and prevent new Floridians from making a smooth and quick transition. By focusing on solving this problem, we will grow our economy, create jobs, and put power in the people’s hands. Whether a New Floridian is coming from Boston or Bogata, the Office for New Floridians will ensure Florida is the most welcoming state in the union for new residents,” the news release says.