Florida Senate - 2013                            (NP)    SR 1854
       By Senator Flores
       37-03559-13                                           20131854__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution celebrating Franco-Floridian
    3         relationships and recognizing Florida’s rich French
    4         heritage.
    6         WHEREAS, in 2012, the celebration of the 450th anniversary
    7  of a French presence in Florida commenced, with recognition of
    8  the first French expedition, led by Jean Ribault, which landed
    9  in Florida in the spring of 1562, and
   10         WHEREAS, the celebration will continue through 2015, as we
   11  recognize a second expedition which, with the help of the
   12  Timucuans, led to the founding of the first French settlement on
   13  American soil, Fort Caroline near what is now Jacksonville, on
   14  June 30, 1564, and
   15         WHEREAS, in October 2012, the French-American Chamber of
   16  Commerce in Miami, in partnership with the French Consulate,
   17  organized the first Miami-Nice Jazz Festival, which highlighted
   18  the partnership between the cities of Nice and Miami, which have
   19  been sister cities since 1963, and
   20         WHEREAS, the number of sister city relationships between
   21  Florida communities and France has grown to 15, with the signing
   22  of a sister-city agreement between Cognac and the Village of
   23  Pinecrest, which will focus on educational initiatives, and
   24         WHEREAS, in recognition of the importance of international
   25  cooperation, public schools in Miami-Dade and Broward Counties
   26  now offer a unique bilingual curriculum in French and English,
   27  known as International Studies, which allows K-12 students to
   28  simultaneously attend both the American and the French programs
   29  and obtain respective diplomas, and
   30         WHEREAS, the France Florida Foundation for the Arts is a
   31  nonprofit organization created to promote French art and culture
   32  in this state and to support cultural, educational, and artistic
   33  exchanges between France and Florida through exhibitions,
   34  performances, lectures, and other cultural events that reflect
   35  the quality of French artists and scholars today, thereby
   36  promoting knowledge of the French language, history, and culture
   37  among local students and citizens, and
   38         WHEREAS, it is estimated that about 30,000 French citizens
   39  currently reside in this state, providing some 18,000 jobs and
   40  contributing significantly to the economic well-being of all
   41  Floridians, NOW, THEREFORE,
   43  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   45         That we celebrate Franco-Floridian relationships and
   46  recognize Florida’s rich French heritage.