Researchers from the University of South Florida (USF) published a survey on Friday that measured public opinion on inflation, finding that nearly half of Floridians agree that inflation has made it more difficult to afford necessities.
The most recent Consumer Price Index report for March 2022 indicated that inflation rose a further 1.2 percent, amounting to an 8.5 percent annual increase. Gasoline, shelter, and food showed the highest rise in costs, further attributing to the responses in the survey.
Almost half of Floridians (48 percent) either “strongly” or “somewhat agree” that inflation has impacted their ability to pay essential bills, and over three-fourths (77 percent) say that inflation has impacted their grocery spending.
Additionally, survey results show that Floridians have had difficulties in keeping up with mortgage and rent payments over the past year. About a quarter of Floridians (24 percent) say that they have had a hard time keeping up with their rent and mortgage payments over the past year, and one in three (35 percent) noted that their current household income does not support the cost of renting or buying a home in the state.
“I’m, quite frankly, concerned and worried about Biden plunging us into a recession,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said during a press conference earlier this week. “If you look at what he did when he came in, decided to print trillions and trillions of dollars, and the result of that’s been the worst inflation we’ve seen in this country in four decades. It’s killing people across the board to have to pay so much for gasoline, have to pay so much for bills, have to pay so much for food.”
DeSantis’ dissatisfaction with inflation regulation is matched by respondents, with just under two-thirds of Floridians saying that the Biden administration is “very” or “somewhat responsible” for the inflation being experienced by Floridians right now (64 percent), compared to 49 percent placing responsibility with the Trump administration.
In totality, three-fourths of Floridians are “somewhat” or “very dissatisfied” with how the federal government is managing inflation and the rising costs of goods and services (77 percent).
With home values increasing by almost 70 percent in Florida over the past five years, 36 percent of Floridians who don’t own a home say that they are putting off buying due to the hot market as well as increased expenses, such as rising insurance premiums.