Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability
Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability

Department of State

For assistance, call 850-245-6500 or visit https://dos.myflorida.com/

What is the purpose of the department?

The Department of State seeks to improve the quality of life for all Floridians by
  • promoting economic development through a business-friendly corporate filing environment;
  • providing access to information and protecting democracy by overseeing fair and accurate elections;
  • enriching public libraries and supporting events that attract tourism;
  • interpret Florida's rich history and make it accessible to the public through our nationally recognized museums and historic sites; 
  • collecting important public records and preserving the state's cultural heritage and historical resources; and
  • promoting economic development through the arts.

What are the major responsibilities of the department?

The department is responsible for five major programs.
  • Corporations maintains and makes available to the public certain information on businesses operating in Florida and certain financial transactions that take place in the state, such as the filing of business entities, trade and service marks, judgment liens, and fictitious name registrations.
  • Elections provides administrative support to ensure fair and accurate elections and promotes public awareness and participation in the electoral process.
  • Library and Information Services preserves and stores state records, provides public access to state information, administers grants, and provides consultative/training services to improve local library services throughout the state.
  • Historical Resources encourages identification, evaluation, protection, preservation, collection, conservation, interpretation of, and public access to information about Florida's historic sites, properties, and objects related to Florida history and to archaeological and folk cultural heritage.
  • Arts and Culture improves the quality of life in Florida by promoting programs with cultural and artistic significance that have an economic impact on the state, including museums.

What additional functions of interest to the public does the department perform?

The department is responsible for filing rules promulgated by state regulatory agencies. The Florida Administrative Register & Florida Administrative Code electronically publishes the Florida Administrative Register, and records and files various official records. Through the Administrative Code and Register programs, Floridians have access to the rules and regulations affecting them, as well as proposed rules, notices of public meetings, bid proposals, and other items. Services are accessible at the Florida Administrative Code & Florida Administrative Register website.

In addition, as the official custodian of the Florida State Seal, the department oversees the use or display of the state seal for reproduction or manufacturing.

How are these activities funded?

Fiscal Year: 2022-23
Fund Dollars Positions
STATE, DEPARTMENT OF
PROGRAM: CORPORATIONS
COMMERCIAL RECORDINGS AND REGISTRATIONS
12,423,597
102.00
PROGRAM: CULTURAL AFFAIRS
ARTS AND CULTURE
68,591,416
14.00
PROGRAM: ELECTIONS
ELECTIONS
30,409,818
67.00
OFFICE OF ELECTION CRIMES AND SECURITY
1,159,921
15.00
PROGRAM: HISTORICAL RESOURCES
HISTORICAL RESOURCES PRESERVATION AND EXHIBITION
53,426,487
74.00
PROGRAM: LIBRARY AND INFORMATION SERVICES
LIBRARY, ARCHIVES AND INFORMATION SERVICES
35,154,843
69.00
PROGRAM: OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY AND ADMINISTRATIVE SERVICES
EXECUTIVE DIRECTION AND SUPPORT SERVICES
48,710,998
103.00
TOTAL
249,877,080
444.00

Updates

Election Administration. The 2022 Florida Legislature enacted Ch. 2022-73, Laws of Florida, which amends provisions governing elections to improve election security, transparency, and administration. The law authorizes changes to citizen initiatives and creates the Office of Election Crimes and Security within the Department of State to aid the Secretary of State in investigation of election law violations or election irregularities. Additional changes in the law include

  • amending current voter registration maintenance,
  • increasing penalties to election law violations;
  • expanding the prohibition against the use of private donations for election-related expenses;
  • modernizing the governor’s authority to appoint special officers to investigate alleged violations of election law;
  • requiring the Department of State to annually report specified information regarding each received allegation of an election law violation or election irregularity;
  • requiring the Department of State to submit a plan to use identifying numbers to confirm the identity of each voter returning a vote-by-mail ballot;
  • revising the date for which supervised voting must be requested; and
  • conforming the mailing and canvassing timeframes for all-mail-ballot elections to those for vote-by-mail ballots in regular elections.

Where can I find related OPPAGA reports?

A complete list of related OPPAGA reports is available on our website.

Where can I get more information?

Other Reports
A complete list of Auditor General reports is available on its website.
Websites of Interest
Division of Corporations, Sunbiz
Florida Memory
Museum of Florida History

Performance Measures


Performance measures and standards for the department may be found in its Long Range Program Plan.

What are the applicable statutes?

Chapter 15 and s. 20.10, Florida Statutes.

Whom do I contact for help?

Secretary of State's Office, 850-245-6500, email:  SecretaryofState@dos.myflorida.com

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