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Gov. DeSantis awards $6.1 million to build workforce training center in Hernando County

The increase in technical and vocational training opportunities should help address labor shortage issues in Florida, the governor says.

BROOKSVILLE, Fla. — Gov. Ron DeSantis is ramping up technical training opportunities in the Tampa Bay area in an effort to address labor shortage issues seen around the state.

During a press conference Monday in Brooksville, the governor awarded $6.1 million to construct a new education center for workforce training in Hernando County.

The training program will be a collaboration between Pasco Hernando State College and Hernando County along with the county's school board.

The new Suncoast Technical Education Center will sit on the PHSC campus and offer opportunities for students to enroll in a variety of vocational programs related to industries like manufacturing, education, healthcare, and aviation.

"These are really, really significant opportunities that can really provide young people with really great job prospects," DeSantis said.

According to the governor, this training center will help the state, too.

As it stands, industries around the state are in need of employees with technical training. And Gov. DeSantis says he's concerned vaccine mandates will worsen the existing labor shortage.

“We’re obviously gonna contest Biden's mandate, but if you think about it we have a lot of industries that are already short-staffed," the governor said. "People should not lose their jobs over this."

He added that we can expect an announcement soon on Florida's plans to address supply chain issues and ensure that goods come into the market more efficiently.

Gov. DeSantis also briefly spoke on his wife Casey's first public appearance since the announcement of her breast cancer diagnosis.

"She's gonna do whatever she needs to do to fight back," DeSantis said of the first lady. "She's gonna be back better than ever. I don't know when, but I know it's gonna happen."