September 18, 2020
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       Florida Senate - 2010                              CS for SB 644
       
       
       
       By the Committee on Governmental Oversight and Accountability;
       and Senator Justice
       
       
       
       585-02026-10                                           2010644c1
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to the direct-support organization for
    3         the Department of Military Affairs; amending s.
    4         250.115, F.S.; authorizing the direct-support
    5         organization to support the processing of requests in
    6         the Soldiers and Airmen Assistance Program or similar
    7         programs; authorizing the president of the direct
    8         support organization to appoint all members of the
    9         board of directors; requiring the direct-support
   10         organization to submit its annual budget and financial
   11         reports to the Department of Military Affairs;
   12         creating s. 250.116, F.S.; creating the Soldiers and
   13         Airmen Assistance Program; authorizing the program to
   14         provide specified types of assistance to certain
   15         members of the Florida National Guard and their
   16         families; providing for the review of requests for
   17         assistance; requiring the financial committee of the
   18         board of directors of the direct-support organization
   19         for the Department of Military Affairs to review the
   20         financial transactions of the program quarterly;
   21         authorizing the financial committee of the board of
   22         directors to request additional reviews by the Office
   23         of Inspector General; authorizing the Department of
   24         Military Affairs to adopt rules to administer the
   25         Soldiers and Airmen Assistance Program; providing an
   26         effective date.
   27  
   28  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   29  
   30         Section 1. Section 250.115, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   31  read:
   32         250.115 Department of Military Affairs direct-support
   33  organization.—
   34         (1) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section, the term:
   35         (a) “Direct-support organization” means an organization
   36  that is:
   37         1. A Florida corporation not for profit, incorporated under
   38  chapter 617, and approved by the Department of State.
   39         2. Organized and operated exclusively to raise funds;
   40  request and receive grants, gifts, and bequests of moneys;
   41  acquire, receive, hold, invest, and administer in its own name
   42  securities, funds, or property; support the processing of
   43  requests for assistance from the Soldiers and Airmen Assistance
   44  Program or similar programs, as directed by the Adjutant
   45  General; and make expenditures to or for the direct or indirect
   46  benefit of the Department of Military Affairs or the Florida
   47  National Guard.
   48         3. Determined by the Department of Military Affairs to be
   49  operating in a manner consistent with the goals of the
   50  Department of Military Affairs and the Florida National Guard
   51  and in the best interest of the state. Any organization that is
   52  denied certification by the Adjutant General may not use the
   53  name of the Florida National Guard or the Department of Military
   54  Affairs in any part of its name or its publications.
   55         (b) “Personal services” includes full-time or part-time
   56  personnel as well as payroll processing.
   57         (2) BOARD OF DIRECTORS.—The organization shall be governed
   58  by a board of directors. The Adjutant General, or his or her
   59  designee, shall appoint a president of the board. The board of
   60  directors shall consist of up to 15 members appointed by the
   61  president of the board. Up to 15 additional members may be
   62  appointed by the president of the board of directors. The terms
   63  of office of the members shall be 3 years. Members must be
   64  residents of the state and highly knowledgeable about the United
   65  States military, its service personnel, and its missions. In
   66  making appointments, the board must consider a potential
   67  member’s background in community service. The board may remove
   68  any member for cause and shall fill vacancies that occur.
   69         (3) USE OF PROPERTY.—
   70         (a) The Department of Military Affairs may permit the use
   71  of property, facilities, and personal services of the Department
   72  of Military Affairs by the direct-support organization, subject
   73  to the provisions of this section.
   74         (b) The Department of Military Affairs may prescribe by
   75  rule any condition with which a direct-support organization
   76  organized under this section must comply in order to use
   77  property, facilities, or personal services of the Department of
   78  Military Affairs.
   79         (c) The Department of Military Affairs may not permit the
   80  use of its property, facilities, or personal services by any
   81  direct-support organization organized under this section which
   82  does not provide equal employment opportunities to all persons
   83  regardless of race, color, national origin, gender, age, or
   84  religion.
   85         (4) ACTIVITIES; RESTRICTIONS.—Any transaction or agreement
   86  between the direct-support organization organized pursuant to
   87  this section and another direct-support organization or center
   88  of technology innovation designated under s. 1004.77 must be
   89  approved by the Department of Military Affairs.
   90         (5) ANNUAL BUDGETS AND REPORTS.—The direct-support
   91  organization shall submit to the Department of Military Affairs
   92  its annual budget and financial reports, its federal Internal
   93  Revenue Service Application for Recognition of Exemption form
   94  (Form 1023), and its federal Internal Revenue Service Return of
   95  Organization Exempt from Income Tax form (Form 990).
   96         (6) ANNUAL AUDIT.—The direct-support organization shall
   97  provide for an annual financial audit in accordance with s.
   98  215.981.
   99         Section 2. Section 250.116, Florida Statutes, is created to
  100  read:
  101         250.116Soldiers and Airmen Assistance Program.—
  102         (1) PROGRAM PURPOSE.—The purpose of the program is to
  103  provide financial assistance and services to eligible
  104  servicemembers of the Florida National Guard and eligible
  105  members of their families. The program shall be administered by
  106  the Director of Financial Management for the Department of
  107  Military Affairs. The Director of Financial Management may be
  108  assisted in the processing of applications and the administering
  109  of the program by the direct-support organization authorized
  110  under s. 250.115.
  111         (2) FUNDING.—The program shall be implemented through
  112  funding provided by the direct-support organization.
  113         (3)AUTHORIZED ASSISTANCE.—The assistance available under
  114  the program may include:
  115         (a)Housing.—The program may provide housing assistance.
  116  Housing assistance includes assistance with emergency repairs,
  117  renovations, or replacements that are needed for a
  118  servicemember’s primary residential property in order to address
  119  health or safety issues or meet disability needs. Housing
  120  assistance also includes assistance with lease deposits,
  121  mortgage payments, and rent payments.
  122         (b)Living expenses.—The program may provide assistance for
  123  living expenses that are reasonable and necessary to meet basic
  124  needs for eligible members of the Florida National Guard and
  125  eligible members of their families. Living expenses include
  126  expenses for clothing, groceries, utility services, gasoline and
  127  transportation, insurance, and child care that is necessary to
  128  obtain or maintain employment.
  129         (c) Vehicles.—The program may provide assistance for
  130  repairs or short-term rentals required to maintain the primary
  131  vehicle of a servicemember’s family in a safe operating
  132  condition. If a repair will not restore the primary vehicle to a
  133  safe operating condition, or if there is no vehicle, assistance
  134  with the purchase of a vehicle may be provided if such a vehicle
  135  is necessary.
  136         (d)Health care.The program may provide assistance for
  137  services that are documented by a medical authority as necessary
  138  for the health and welfare of the individual. Assistance is not
  139  available for elective procedures or medical care that is
  140  covered by insurance.
  141         (e)Other services.—The program may provide assistance for
  142  a service or expense that is not specifically enumerated in this
  143  subsection if the service or expense is reasonable under the
  144  circumstances.
  145         (4) ELIGIBILITY.—Persons eligible for assistance from the
  146  program include:
  147         (a) Servicemembers who are members of the Florida National
  148  Guard who are:
  149         1. On active duty serving in the Global War on Terrorism or
  150  Overseas Contingency Operation or who request assistance within
  151  120 days after the termination of orders for such service and
  152  return to their home of record.
  153         2. Deployed by the Federal Government and participating in
  154  state operations for homeland defense or request assistance
  155  within 120 days after the termination of orders for such service
  156  and return to their home of record.
  157         (b)1. Beneficiaries of an eligible servicemember designated
  158  on United States Department of Defense Form 93.
  159         2. Individuals demonstrating a financial need for
  160  authorized assistance who are dependents or family members of an
  161  eligible servicemember.
  162         (5)REQUESTS FOR ASSISTANCE; REVIEW; AWARDS.
  163         (a) A request for assistance shall be reviewed and
  164  processed at the local level by an official designated by the
  165  Adjutant General. During the initial review and processing of
  166  the request, the Department of Military Affairs may accept
  167  assistance from the direct-support organization. Final review
  168  and approval of requests for assistance shall be made by the
  169  Director of Financial Management for the Department of Military
  170  Affairs.
  171         (b) Requests for assistance shall be reviewed and evaluated
  172  based on the following criteria:
  173         1. The impact of a servicemember’s absence and inability to
  174  assist in home and vehicle repairs or meet other family needs;
  175         2. The economic impact of deployment;
  176         3. The overall financial situation of the applicant;
  177         4. The assistance authorized under the program; and
  178         5. Other relevant information.
  179         (6) QUARTERLY FINANCIAL REVIEW.—The financial committee of
  180  the board of directors of the direct-support organization shall
  181  review financial transactions of the program each quarter. This
  182  review shall be provided to the Director of Financial Management
  183  in order to determine whether the direct-support organization is
  184  being operated in a manner that is consistent with the purposes
  185  of the Soldiers and Airmen Assistance Fund, and in the best
  186  interests of the Department of Military Affairs. The financial
  187  committee may request the Office of Inspector General to conduct
  188  additional reviews.
  189         (7)RULES.—The Department of Military Affairs may adopt
  190  rules to administer this section.
  191         Section 3. This act shall take effect July 1, 2010.

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