Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) announced Thursday the extension of the Florida tax holiday ahead of the hurricane season, which begins next June 1 and is expected to be less intense than 2020.
“With an active hurricane season forecast this year, Floridians should make sure they have at least seven days of supplies and put a disaster plan in place now,” FL Gov. DeSantis said in a statement.
The customary Florida tax holiday, initiated in 2014 to allow local residents to purchase batteries, portable radios and power generators in the face of hurricane season.
“Florida is no stranger to hurricanes and tropical storms. It is critical that Floridians make the necessary preparations to stay safe before, during and after any natural disaster,” said Lieutenant Governor Jeanette Núñez.
Núñez visited one of the Home Depot home improvement stores in the city of Doral, near Miami, where she was presented with a classic orange apron with her name engraved on it.
“I urge residents to take advantage of the 2021 disaster preparedness tax holiday, a tax break on supplies needed to weather the storm,” he added in the company of Florida Senator Manny Diaz.
Kevin Guthrie, director of the Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM), advanced that his entity is preparing for an active hurricane season this year and encouraged “all Floridians to do the same.”
“Having a disaster supply kit stocked is a vital component of individual hurricane preparedness,” Guthrie said.
This Atlantic hurricane season will have “above normal” activity, although it is not expected to be anything like 2020, which broke all-time records with 30 named storms, Ben Friedman, head of the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), said at a virtual press conference last week.
Friedman said the climate map projection shows a 60% chance of above-normal, a 30% chance of near-normal and a 10% chance of below-normal cyclone activity in the Atlantic.
NOAA also predicts a 70 percent chance that the storms that form will reach winds of at least 30 mph (63 km/h).