This article is a reprint of an article that can be viewed here.
In the Florida Legislature, state Sen. Lori Berman, D-Boca Raton, and state Rep. Katherine Waldron, D-Wellington, have filed bills to block Chinese Communist Party (CCP) investments in strategic assets and real estate in the state.
The proposed legislation seeks to prevent the CCP from purchasing or acquiring properties near military bases and other critical locations in Florida. The proposed bill is intended to protect American national security and ensure that vital infrastructure is safe from foreign surveillance and potential influence by the CCP and its affiliates.
The CCP has already purchased more than $2 billion worth of land across the United States, including almost 200,000 acres of land located near military bases. Without legislation in place, states have been unable to halt these purchases. The proposed bill will be a proactive measure to protect the physical and strategic assets of the state from being exploited by potential foreign adversaries.
The strategic assets that the bill aims to protect include power plants, water treatment facilities, emergency operation centers, military bases, telecommunications towers, law enforcement facilities, and other structures that the state deems strategic. This legislation is in line with President Joe Biden’s recent Executive Order signed in September 2022, which helps define additional national security factors for the Committee on Foreign Investment in the U.S. (CFIUS) to consider when evaluating transactions.
“With this bill, Florida will take a step forward in protecting American national security and ensuring that our military’s assets are protected from foreign surveillance. Passing this legislation is vital to countering the CCP’s troubling influence and unlawful surveillance,” said Berman.
“This bill seeks to proactively protect our physical and strategic assets from being exploited or undermined by potential foreign adversaries. It will prevent these adversaries from exploiting their proximity to our strategic assets,” said Waldron.