2022 Legislature                                          SM 826
    2         A memorial to the Congress of the United States,
    3         urging Congress to impel the United States National
    4         Guard Bureau to examine the resource allocations of
    5         the Florida National Guard and allow an increase in
    6         its force structure.
    8         WHEREAS, the number of soldiers and airmen allocated to
    9  each state’s National Guard, known as its “force structure,” is
   10  determined by the United States National Guard Bureau in
   11  Washington, D.C., and
   12         WHEREAS, with approximately 21 million residents, Florida
   13  is the third most populous state in the nation but nevertheless
   14  has a force structure of just over 12,000 Guardsmen, and its
   15  ratio of one Guardsman for every 1,833 residents ranks 53rd
   16  among the 54 states and territories of the United States which
   17  have a National Guard component, and
   18         WHEREAS, due to the unprecedented events of 2020 and 2021,
   19  including the COVID-19 response, and in addition to natural
   20  disasters and overseas deployments, the Florida National Guard
   21  has expended the same number of workdays within the past 18
   22  months as it expended over the past 20 years, and
   23         WHEREAS, the Florida National Guard continues to meet its
   24  mission goals; however, the shortage of these invaluable
   25  “citizen soldiers,” combined with the state’s growing population
   26  and increased need for National Guard activation and response,
   27  has resulted in the repeated deployment of the same soldiers,
   28  which ultimately leads to their excessive fatigue and negatively
   29  impacts recruitment, retention, and readiness, and
   30         WHEREAS, the United States National Guard Bureau’s report,
   31  “Impact of U.S. Population Trends on National Guard Force
   32  Structure,” released to Congress in April 2021, acknowledges the
   33  aforementioned concerns within Florida and other regions,
   34  stating, “The National Guard may need to evaluate re-allocating
   35  mission sets to other geographic areas to keep pace with
   36  changing demographics across the country,” NOW, THEREFORE,
   38  Be It Resolved by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   40         That the Florida Legislature respectfully urges the United
   41  States Congress to impel the United States National Guard Bureau
   42  to examine the resource allocations of the Florida National
   43  Guard and allow an increase in its force structure.
   44         BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that copies of this memorial be
   45  dispatched to the President of the United States, to the
   46  President of the United States Senate, to the Speaker of the
   47  United States House of Representatives, and to each member of
   48  the Florida delegation to the United States Congress.