Top Florida official overseeing COVID-19 response resigns

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — A top Florida official responsible for his state’s handling of the coronavirus outbreak is stepping down.

Jared Moskowitz, who heads Florida’s Division of Emergency Management, told the USA TODAY NETWORK that an official announcement of his departure is expected Tuesday by Gov. Ron DeSantis.

“My departure won’t be imminent,” Moskowitz said, adding that it would be a “gradual transition.” He did not give a precise timeline.

Moskowitz, a Democrat and former member of the state House, assumed the role shortly after DeSantis, a Republican, took office in 2018.

During his tenure, Moskowitz has overseen the emergency response to the coronavirus outbreak — a demanding and stressful role that, he said, has taken a toll on his family life.

“My kids are 7 and 4. When I started this job, they were 5 and 2,” Moskowitz told the newspaper chain. “I’ve been in this job for 50% of my younger one’s life.”

His departure was first announced by Florida Politics.

Spokespeople for the governor’s office were not immediately available to comment.