Florida Senate - 2024                                     SM 226
       By Senator Wright
       8-00491-24                                             2024226__
    1                           Senate Memorial                         
    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 has a force
   14  structure of just over 12,000 Guardsmen, and its ratio of one
   15  Guardsman for every 1,833 residents ranks 53rd among the 54
   16  states and territories of the United States which have a
   17  National Guard component, and
   18         WHEREAS, due to the unprecedented events of 2020 and 2021,
   19  including COVID-19 response in addition to natural disasters and
   20  overseas deployments, the Florida National Guard expended the
   21  same number of workdays in 18 months as it had expended during
   22  the previous 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 excessive stress and fatigue and
   29  negatively 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 of 2021, acknowledges
   33  the aforementioned concerns within Florida and other regions,
   34  stating, “...the National Guard may need to evaluate re
   35  allocating mission sets to other geographic areas to keep pace
   36  with 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 the Secretary of State dispatch
   45  copies of this memorial to the President of the United States,
   46  the President of the United States Senate, the Speaker of the
   47  United States House of Representatives, and each member of the
   48  Florida delegation to the United States Congress.