Melisa Giovannelli for Lee County School Board District 2

Melisa Giovannelli for Lee County School Board District 2

ACT = Accountability, Collaborate & Transparency! I’m your Voice! I’m not a go along get along... St John’s 2nd Ranked in the State does just that.

Here are my 5 areas of School Board Improvement, not exactly in this order.
1. Budget – End Wasteful Spending – Forensic Audit, put checking account online for Transparency. Restore Local Control – As parents we control our children’s education with the aid of our School District. Together we can better our Community and Students.
3. Teacher Retention – Compensation and Incentives for hiring and r

Operating as usual


June 14, 2024

Public Policy Update

Hello everyone. This week was a big one for our 2024 legislative priorities as Gov. DeSantis signed the 2024-2025 fiscal year budget. The $116.5 billion budget features significant funding for the Hometown Heroes Housing Program, the My Safe Florida Home Program, state and local government affordable housing programs, and a large investment in water quality and environmental projects throughout the state.
All eyes had been watching the budget (HB 5001) to see when it might get sent his way and sure enough, when it final did the governor acted quickly. The bill signing event took place in Tampa on Wednesday and the governor spent more than 40 minutes highlighting some of the key initiatives and programs that are in the budget. You can watch his full press conference here if you are interested.
The governor also sent out a press release that includes what he highlighted during the press conference as well as some other key budget items. You can read his full summary on the budget here which also contains the list of vetoed projects that amounted to nearly $950 million. Thankfully, none of the vetoes impacted our priorities.
Here is a quick look at the overall budget numbers as they relate to our priorities. For a more detailed look at the numbers, check out this Florida Realtors news article. Unless stated otherwise, the budget will become effective on July 1, 2024.
• $100 million for the Hometown Heroes Housing Program.
• $200 million for the My Safe Florida Home Program.
• $30 million for the My Safe Florida Condominium Pilot Program.
• $408 million for state and local government affordable housing programs.
• $1.2 billion for water quality and environmental projects to keep Florida clean and beautiful.
• $500,000 to help prevent unlicensed real estate activity.
• $500,000 to evaluate the impact of lookback periods.
State Response to South Florida Flooding
State officials have been releasing information and resources related to the flash flooding taking place in South Florida.
Eighteen to 20 inches of rainfall has been recorded in parts of Broward and Miami-Dade counties. Flood Watches remain in effect across South Florida, the Keys, and portions of West-Central Florida as multiple rounds of heavy rainfall will lead to instances of flash flooding, especially for urban and low-lying/poor drainage areas.
Here is the governor’s state of emergency declaration for Broward, Collier, Lee, Miami-Dade and Sarasota counties.
The latest updates, information and access to resources can be found here.
Florida CFO Jimmy Patronis Touts Business Rent Tax Cut
The Florida Cabinet voted this week to approve rules to implement the reduction of the Business Rent Tax from 4.5% to 2%. This was a necessary step to properly implement the planned reduction that has been a major priority of Florida Realtors for the past several years. The cut is expected to provide Florida employers with an estimated $1 billion in tax relief.
Here is what CFO Jimmy Patronis had to say about the reduction:
“As a former small business owner, I’m continuously looking for ways to help reduce the tax burden on Florida’s businesses and job creators. Because of prudent financial management, Florida’s economy is in the best fiscal health in state history, and it’s vital that we pass that success back to Floridians in the form of tax cuts. This reduction in the Commercial Lease Sales Tax is a huge win for Florida businesses, saving them an estimated $1 billion in tax relief. This is especially helpful to small business who often do not own their facilities like the big box stores.”
More information can be found here.
Homegrown Advocacy Tour Makes Its Last Stop

Members and legislators get together on the final Homegrown Advocacy Tour stop in Islamorada, FL.
We wrapped up the Homegrown Advocacy Tour this week with a final stop in Islamorada to hear from District 4 members. Florida Realtors President Gia Arvin joined the public policy team and several state legislators from the area to discuss local and state issues impacting Realtor® businesses. Many thanks to Sen. Ana Maria Rodriguez, Sen. Alexis Calatayud, Rep. Tom Fabricio and Rep. Jim Mooney for joining us on this tour stop to meet with our members.
The Homegrown Advocacy Tour has been invaluable in helping our team collect feedback to shape our legislative agenda to the needs of our members. Thank you to everyone who participated in the tour!
VA Temporarily Allows Buyer-Paid Broker Fees
The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) announced a temporary policy on Tuesday allowing buyers using VA-guaranteed home loans to compensate their buyer brokers directly.
The VA said the new rule comes as the proposed $418 million settlement agreement to the Sitzer-Burnett verdict may have put veterans at a disadvantage in the evolving homebuying market. The VA released the update to make sure that veterans remain competitive buyers. Before this move, veterans could not pay buyer-broker fees when purchasing a home with VA loans.
“The full impact of the settlement is not yet certain because the real estate market is still adjusting, but there may be an increased expectation that home buyers will pay for their own buyer-broker fees. In VA’s program, it has been common practice for sellers to pay for the Veteran’s buyer-broker fees," VA officials said.
The National Association of Realtors® applauded the VA for revising its policy and allowing veterans and active-duty service members the same advantages as other buyers in a competitive real estate market.
"NAR launched an all-hands advocacy effort on this issue, including working with Congress and the relevant VA committees, meeting with the VA, collaborating with industry partners and holding hundreds of meetings on Capitol Hill during the Realtors Legislative Meetings in May,” NAR said in a written statement.
"We look forward to continuing this conversation, and our 1.5 million members stand ready to support the VA in whatever way possible to protect the brave men and women who serve this country and ensure they are given the equal opportunity to achieve the American dream of homeownership."
Read the full Florida Realtors news article here.
New NAR Advocacy Scoop Podcast Episode Published
NAR Chief Advocacy Officer Shannon McGahn and NAR Director of Advocacy Communications Patrick Newton provide a mid-year advocacy update, including advocacy work surrounding the settlement agreement and its impact on the Department of Veterans Affairs home loan guarantee program, and much, much more in this latest Advocacy Scoop episode.
Please reach out to us at [email protected] with any questions you may have.

Andy Gonzalez
Vice President of Public Policy
Florida Realtors®


Photos from Melisa Giovannelli for Lee County School Board District 2's post 15/06/2024

Congratulations to the Technical Colleges of the class of 2024! Some of you did it in a year! Look at the list over 600 graduates. Lee County knows the need and the students are graduating with jobs!!🎓🎓🎓


The Freedom Month Sales Tax Holiday: July 1—31, Florida families can purchase summer items like pool floats, fishing supplies, and outdoor equipment, in addition to admissions to museums and state parks, sales tax free.


With Jenna Persons-Mulicka – I just got recognized as one of their top fans! 🎉


Thankful and grateful for those that gave their ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms! Remember them and vote! 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻🇺🇸🇺🇸🇺🇸

Photos from School District of Lee County's post 23/05/2024

Schools Seek to Require More Civil Behavior from Students, Parents: The Pasco County school board is changing school rules on basic behavior, including use of cell phones and dress codes but also basic expectations for civil behavior from students and parents, in a bid to reduce what many school officials say is a tenor of incivility in daily discourse in schools that one board member said seem to now be "the temper of our times." Tampa Bay Times

Photos from Lee County Sheriff's Office's post 21/05/2024

Thanks Sheriff! Congratulations Wolfpack Class of 2024! 🎓🐺🎓

Photos from Lemuel Teal Middle's post 21/05/2024

You will be missed Tina!


Save the date! Parade is on!

Photos from Southwest Florida Christian Academy's post 21/05/2024

Congratulations Class of 2024! Go Kings! 👑🎓👑

Photos from Lemuel Teal Middle's post 21/05/2024

Please take a moment to look over our information regarding 8th Grade Promotion Ceremonies. These ceremonies are for students only, but we will be putting a link for Microsoft Teams ASAP, so that parents can view.
If you have any questions, please feel free to give us a call at the school.


Looking for summer volunteer opportunities?

Join Camp IMAG as a JCA!

Get the application at


Congrats to all of the 2024 graduates 🎓


Congratulations Principal Middlebrooks! Thank you for being my Principal!

The Community Foundation The Community Foundation, founded in Cape Coral, largest city in Southwest Florida, the center for ge


The King is born! He will light up the World! Peace & Love this Christmas season! ❤️❤️❤️

Photos from Melisa Giovannelli for Lee County School Board District 2's post 24/12/2023

Merry Christmas! Have a Blessed Holiday season! Enjoy! From my family to yours. 🎄🎄🎄Jesus is the reason for the Season!

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Videos (show all)

Wolfpack 2024 Graduation!
Class of 2024
Happy National Resource Officer Appreciation Day! Thank you for serving Lee County Students and keeping them safe!
Honor Flight 2023!
Play it RHS!
Greatest Show on Turf! Ribbon cutting! New Turf is beautiful!
FMHS Band is ready! 💚🎵🎼🎶