2007 Legislative Report Presession

Foundation Members: The following is a list of the bills, grouped by general category, we will be tracking throughout the 2007 Legislative Session. As usual, we have selected those bills with open government and first amendment implications we think will be of interest to our members. After the summary of each open government bill, you will find an easily recognizable indication of whether the bill is good or bad. Under this reporting system, πŸ™‚ is Good and πŸ™ is Bad. Those bills that are neither good nor bad will not be marked. If we’re not sure of a bill, it will be marked with ???. And we’re adding a new feature this year: bills of interest which do not necessarily affect the public’s right of access to records or meetings will be marked WATCH.

During session, we will report any activity on these bills, as well as any new legislation that may be filed, on a weekly basis. Bills are listed in numerical order. When the text of the bill and its companion are identical, only the first bill listed is analyzed. We suggest you keep this pre-session report, as the weekly reports will not contain a complete description of all the bills.

Open Government Sunset Review (OGSR): Under the Open Government Sunset Review Act of 1995, all exemptions to the Sunshine Law and Public Records Law must be reviewed and reenacted by the Legislature five years after the date of enactment, or the exemption will automatically “sunset”. The 2007 Legislature will be reviewing all exemptions created in 2002. Those bills will be included in our legislative reports and are designated “OGSR”.

PUBLIC RECORDS and OPEN MEETINGS

HB 43 Voting Systems:

Stipulates that all electronic voting systems approved by the Department of State must produce (1) a voter-verifiable paper record suitable for a manual audit and (2) a permanent paper record made available for inspection and verification by the voter at the time the vote is cast. Finally, requires that the voter be provided an opportunity to correct any error made by the system before the permanent record is preserved for use in any manual audit. Similar to SB 342. Rep. Ari Abraham Porth (D-Coral Springs) πŸ™‚

HB 63 Exemption/Domestic Violence – State Employees:

Creates a public record exemption for personal identifying information contained in records documenting an act of domestic violence that is submitted to an agency by an agency employee. Also exempts written requests for leave submitted by an agency employee and agency time sheets reflecting such requests until one year after the leave has been taken. Similar to SB 186. Rep. Ari Abraham Porth (D-Coral Springs)

HB 131 Exemption/Florida Opportunity Fund:

Creates a public record exemption for proprietary confidential business information concerning alternative investments of the Florida Opportunity Fund. Stipulates that the exemption applies only if the person submitting the information provides a verified written declaration that (1) identifies the proprietary confidential business information within the record submitted; (2) certifies that asserted trade secrets meet the statutory definition; (3) certifies that the identified information is intended to be and is treated as private and is not readily ascertainable or publicly available from any other source; and (4) certifies that the disclosure of the identified information would harm the business interests of the person submitting the information. Allows access by court order and a showing of good cause. Rep. Michael Grant (R-Port Charlotte)

HB 153 Ad Valorem Tax Data:

Amends s. 119.052, F.S., requiring the Department of Revenue to annually publish data relating to ad valorem tax data, to stipulate that such data must include the annual percentage increase in total non-voted ad valorem taxes levied by each local taxing authority and information on the distribution of ad valorem taxes levied among the various classifications of property. Similar to SB 560. Rep. Jack Seiler (D-Pompano Beach) πŸ™‚

SB 186 Exemption/Domestic Violence – State Employees:

Similar to HB 63. Sen. Dave Aronberg (D-Greenacres)

HB 213 Trust in Elections Act:

In pertinent part, stipulates that all electronic voting systems approved by the Department of State must produce (1) a voter-verifiable paper record suitable for a manual audit and (2) a permanent paper record made available for inspection and verification by the voter at the time the vote is cast. Finally, requires that the voter be provided an opportunity to correct any error made by the system before the permanent record is preserved for use in any manual audit. Provides a penalty for the unauthorized removal from a polling place of paper records produced by an electronic voting machine. Rep. Dorothy Hukill (R-Daytona Beach) πŸ™‚

HB 231 Building Code Inspectors:

Stipulates that any complaint or record maintained by the Department of Business and Professional Regulation relating to the discipline of a licensed building code administrator, plans examiner, or building inspector and any proceeding held by DBPR be open and available to the public 30 days after the date that legal sufficiency is determined. Similar to SB 726. Rep. Jennifer Carroll (R-Jacksonville) πŸ™‚

  • H. Business Regulation Committee: A strike all amendment stipulating that records of a disciplinary complaint against a code enforcement official be open and available to the public if the complaint has been found “legally sufficient” and the investigation of the complaint ceases to be active. An investigation ceases to be active when the case is dismissed prior to a finding of probable cause or 10 days after a determination regarding probable cause. Also stipulates that in response to an inquiry, DBPR must disclose the existence of an active investigation if the nature of the violation under investigation involves the potential for substantial physical or financial harm to the public. Reported favorably with one amendment. Now in H. Jobs & Entrepreneurship Council.

SB 342 Voting Systems:

Similar to HB 43. Sen. Frederica Wilson (D-Miami) πŸ™‚

HB 375 Exemption/Home Addresses – EMTs:

Creates a public record exemption for the home addresses, telephone numbers, social security numbers, and photographs of active or former emergency medical technicians or paramedics, the home addresses, telephone numbers, social security numbers, photographs, and places of employment of their spouses and children, and the names and locations of schools and day care facilities attended by their children. Similar to SB 1340. Rep. Trudi Williams (R-Ft. Myers) πŸ™

HB 377 Permanent Paper Ballots:

In pertinent part, stipulates that all voting machines be capable of producing an individual voter-verified paper record of the vote that must be made available for inspection and verification by the voter before the vote is cast. Rep. Susan Bucher (D-West Palm Beach) πŸ™‚

HB 455 Exemption/Organ & Tissue Donation Program:

In pertinent part, stipulates that the Florida Coalition on Donation, a private non-profit organization providing education and helping to coordinate the statewide organ and tissue donation program, does not perform a public function. Further stipulates that only those meetings of the coalition board at which expenditure of public funds is discussed will be open to the public. Specifically states that all other meetings of the board will not be open under Florida’s Sunshine Law. Similar to SB 1350. Rep. Larry Cretul (R-Ocala) πŸ™

HB 457 Patient’s Right-to-Know Act:

In pertinent part, stipulates that information concerning nursing home care for patients be made available to the public. Similar to SB 884. Rep. Kelly Skidmore (D-Boca Raton) πŸ™‚

SB 462 Electronic Voting Systems:

Stipulates that as of July 1, 2008, all touchscreen or other electronic voting machine must provide for verification by voters and the capability of being audited. Also requires that such systems produce (1) a voter-verified paper record suitable for a manual audit and (2) a permanent paper record. Sen. Gary Siplin (D-Orlando) πŸ™‚

HB 463 Exemption/High School Drug Tests:

Creates a public record exemption for the results of random drug tests of high school athletes. Rep. Marcelo Llorente (R-Miami)

HB 467 Exemption/Public Hospital CEOs:

Creates a public record exemption for the name of a candidate or nominee for the position of chief executive officer or designated corporate officer of a public hospital in the possession of a search committee for the purpose of selecting candidates or nominees, as well as all records or information that would reveal the identity of a candidate or nominee until the list of candidates or nominees is given to the hospital governing board. Also exempts any meeting or portion of a meeting of a search committee at which information concerning such candidates or nominees is presented or discussed. Rep. Larry Cretul (R-Ocala) πŸ™

SB 520 Exemption/Controlled Substances:

Creates a public record exemption for identifying information of a patient, health care practitioner, pharmacist, or pharmacy contained in records held by DOH under the electronic-monitoring system for prescription of controlled substances. “Identifying information” includes, but is not limited to, the name, address, telephone number, insurance plan number, social security number, or other unique identifying number. Similar to HB 895. Sen. Burt Saunders (R-Naples) πŸ™

  • S. Health Regulation Committee: Reported favorably with one minor amendment. Now in S. Criminal Justice.

HB 541 Public Records/Inspection & Copying:

Stipulates that each agency head who appoints a designee to act as custodian of public records must provide notice of the designation to the public. Stipulates that the notice must contain the name and title of the designee, as well as the designee’s e-mail address, office telephone number, and office mailing address, and that the notice be prominently posted in areas of the office accessible to the public as well as on the agency’s website. Prohibits denial of the existence of a public record by any person who is not the custodian or of public records or the designee. Also stipulates that custodians of public records and their designees must respond to public record requests “promptly and in good faith”, and that a “good faith response” includes determining whether the record requested exists and, if so, where it can be accessed. Finally, requires that a custodian or his or her designee be available to respond to public record requests during regular business hours of the office at which such records are maintained. Similar to SB 1760. Rep. Shelley Vana (D-West Palm Beach) πŸ™‚

SB 560 Ad Valorem Tax Data:

Similar to HB 153. Sen. Jeff Atwater (R-North Palm Beach) πŸ™‚

SB 608 Exemption/S. Florida Regional Transportation Authority:

Creates a public record exemption for appraisal reports, offers, and counteroffers relating to land acquisition by the South Florida Regional Transportation Authority until an option contract is executed or, if no option contract is executed, until 30 days before a contract or agreement for purchase is considered for approval by the authority. Allows disclosure under certain, specified conditions. Similar to HB 961. Sen. Steven Geller (D-Hallandale Beach)

SB 628 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Al Lawson (D-Tallahassee) πŸ™

SB 630 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Al Lawson (D-Tallahassee) πŸ™

SB 632 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Al Lawson (D-Tallahassee) πŸ™

SB 634 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Al Lawson (D-Tallahassee) πŸ™

HB 717 Sealing Criminal History Records:

Amends s. 943.059, F.S., relating to the court-ordered sealing of criminal history records, to provide requirements for sealing of a criminal history records relating to “specially sealable misdemeanors”. Rep. Chuck Chestnut (D-Gainesville)

SB 726 Building Code Inspectors:

Similar to HB 231. Sen. Stephen Wise (R-Jacksonville) πŸ™‚

SB 766 Shell/Electronic Health Records:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to electronic health records. Sen. Jeff Atwater (R-North Palm Beach) ???

SB 816 OGSR/Law Enforcement Transmittal Letters:

Reenacts with some modification the public record exemption in s. 119.071(2)(c)2., F.S., for requests made by a law enforcement agency to inspect or copy a public record in the custody of another agency. As amended, stipulates that the exempt is retroactive. S. Criminal Justice CommitteeΒ 

HB 825 Exemption/Contemplated Litigation:

Expands the exemption under s. 286.011(8), F.S., for meetings at which pending litigation is discussed to also include matters which are subject to the notice requirement under s. 768.28 and for which a lawsuit has not yet been filed and matters about which the governmental entity is contemplating litigation. Stipulates that transcripts of the closed meeting be made public upon conclusion of the litigation or once the agency determines it will not commence litigation. Similar to SB 1618. Rep. Matt Meadows (D-Lauderhill) πŸ™

SB 830 Driver History Records:

Amends s. 119.0712(2), F.S., the Driver’s Privacy Protection Act, to further restrict disclosure of a person’s identification card number, social security number, photograph, medical disability information, and emergency contact information. Sen. Carey Baker (R-Eustis)

HB 853 Exemption/Historic St. Augustine – Donors:

Creates a public record exemption for the identity of a donor or prospective donor to the historic preservation of St. Augustine if the donor or prospective donor wishes to remain anonymous. Rep. Bill Proctor (R-St. Augustine)

SB 884 Patient’s Right-to-Know Act:

Similar to HB 457. Sen. Nan Rich (D-Sunrise) πŸ™‚

SB 886 OGSR/Building Plans:

Reenacts with minor technical modification the public exemption in s. 119.071(3)(b), F.S., for building plans, blueprints, schematics drawings, and diagrams which depict the internal layout and structural elements of a building, arena, stadium, water treatment facility, or other structure owned or operated by an agency. S. Committee on Military Affairs and Domestic Security

HB 895 Exemption/Controlled Substances:

Similar to SB 520. Rep. Gayle Harrell (R-Port St. Lucie) πŸ™

SB 950 Exemption/Agency Medical Records:

Creates a public record exemption for medical records held by an agency. Defines “medical record” as any patient-specific record created by a health care practitioner for the purpose of diagnosing or treating an illness. S. Health Care Committee

HB 961 Exemption/S. Florida Regional Transportation Authority:

Similar to SB 608. Rep. Julio Robaina (R-Miami)

SB 1034 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Jeff Atwater (R-North Palm Beach) πŸ™

SB 1182 Exemption/Economic Development Agencies:

Amends s. 288.075, F.S., allowing an exemption for certain records of an economic development agency, to provide a definition of “proprietary confidential business information” and “trade secret”. Expands current law to allow an exemption for such information in perpetuity. Also provides an exemption for economic incentive program information held by an EDA, including the average wage actually paid by a participating business for those jobs created pursuant to the program which is held as evidence of achievement or nonachievement of program requirements. S. Commerce Committee πŸ™

SB 1240 Public Records/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to public records. Sen. Don Gaetz (R-Fort Walton Beach) πŸ™

SB 1244 Public Records/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to public records. Sen. Don Gaetz (R-Fort Walton Beach) πŸ™

SB 1264 Public Records/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to public records. Sen. Steve Oelrich (R-Gainesville) πŸ™

SB 1266 Public Records/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to public records. Sen. Steve Oelrich (R-Gainesville) πŸ™

SB 1340 Exemption/Home Addresses – EMTs:

Similar to HB 375. Sen. Dave Aronberg (D-Greenacres) πŸ™

SB 1346 Court Records:

Amends the general state policy on public records under s. 119.01(1), F.S., to include language from the constitutional right of access to public records. Provides a definition for the terms “confidential and exempt”and “exempt”. Stipulates that only certain specified exemptions in chapter 119 will be applied to court records but further stipulates that the section does not apply to exemptions found in other sections of the law. S. Judiciary Committee ???

SB 1348 OGSR/Social Security Numbers & Personal Financial Information – Court Records:

Reenacts with minor modification s. 119.071(5), F.S., providing an exemption for social security numbers and personal financial information contained in a court record. S. Judiciary Committee

SB 1350 Exemption/Organ & Tissue Donation:

Similar to HB 455. Sen. Steve Oelrich (R-Gainesville) πŸ™

SB 1452 OGSR/Public Service Tax:

Repeals s. 166.236, F.S., providing an exemption for information received by a taxing authority or its agent in connection with an audit of public service taxes collected by a telecommunications service provider. S. Communications and Public Utilities Committee

SB 1468 OGSR/Social Security Numbers & Personal Financial Information – Public Records:

Reenacts with minor modification s. 119.071(5), F.S., providing an exemption for social security numbers and personal financial information held by an agency. S. Governmental Operations Committee

SB 1492 OGSR/Identifying Information – Optional Retirement Program:

Reenacts with minor modification s. 121.4501, F.S., providing an exemption for personal identifying information of participants in the Public Employee Optional Retirement Program. S. Governmental Operations Committee

SB 1510 Exemption/Sunshine State One-Call:

Creates a public record exemption for proprietary confidential business information held by Sunshine State One-Call for the purpose of describing the extent and root cause of damage to an underground facility or using the member ticket management software system. Stipulates that such information will be exempt from public disclosure only if the information (1) is treated by the company as confidential; (2) would be reasonably likely to be used by a competitor to harm the business interests of the company; and (3) is not otherwise readily ascertainable or public available “by proper means by other persons from another source in the same configuration as requested by the local government entity.” Sen. Dave Aronberg (D-Greenacres)

SB 1576 Exemption/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to create a public record and meetings exemption. Sen. Alex Villalobos (R-Miami) πŸ™

SB 1590 Public Records/Shell Bill:

Expresses legislative intent to revise laws relating to public records. Sen. Alex Villalobos (R-Miami) πŸ™

SB 1618 Exemption/Contemplated Litigation:

Similar to HB 825. Sen. Dave Aronberg (D-Greenacres) πŸ™

NOTE: We’ve been informed that SB 1618 was filed in error and that Sen. Aronberg intends to withdraw the bill from consideration at the first opportunity.

SB 1760 Public Records/Inspection & Copying:

Stipulates that a custodian of a public record or any person who has custody of public records may designate another officer or employee of the agency to permit inspection and copying of the records and requires disclosure of the identity of the designee to the person requesting the records. Requires a prompt and good faith response to requests to inspect or copy public records. Finally, stipulates that a custodian or designee be available to respond to public record requests during the regular business hours of the office at which the requested records are maintained. Similar to HB 541. Rep. Charlie Justice (D-St. Petersburg) πŸ™‚

SB 1848 OGSR/Abandoned Property Records:

Reenacts and amends s. 717.117, F.S., providing an exemption for social security numbers and financial account numbers in reports to the Department of Financial Services of abandoned or unclaimed property. As amended, exempts social security numbers, insurance policy numbers, investment account numbers, pension and profit-sharing account numbers, patient account numbers, utility account numbers, customer account numbers, and wage, payroll, and salary account numbers. S. Banking and Insurance Committee

SB 1850 OGSR/DOI – Workpapers:

Reeancts and amends s. 624.319, F.S., providing an exemption for certain records or reports held by or provided to the Department of Insurance (DOI). As amended, exempts examination reports until filed, investigation reports, and workpapers and other information held by or provided to the Department of Insurance (DOI) in performance of its examinations or investigations duties until the report is filed or the investigation is complete or no longer active. S. Banking and Insurance Committee

SB 1852 OGSR/DOI – Personal Financial and Identifying Information:

Amends and slightly expands the exemption is s. 624.23, F.S., for personal financial and health information of a consumer held by the Department of Insurance (DOI) or its service providers. As amended, exempts personal financial and health information held by DOI and the Department of Financial Services relating to a consumer’s complaint or inquiry regarding matters regulated under the Florida Insurance Code. Provides a definition of “personal financial and health information”. S. Banking and Insurance Committee

SB 1950 OGSR/Abandoned Newborns:

Reenacts with minor technical modification the exemption in s. 383.51, F.S., for the identity of parents leaving newborn infants at hospitals, fire stations, or emergency medical services stations. S. Children, Families and Elder Affairs Committee

SB 2024 Exemption/Alternative Energy Technology:

Creates a public record exemption for the following information held by the Alternative Energy Technology Center: (1) the identity of a business that may be recruited and all negotiations to recruit a business to locate in Florida, with the stipulation that such information becomes public at the conclusion or termination of the recruitment process; (2) proprietary business information obtained from a business entity; (3) material related to methods of manufacture or production; (4) potential and actual trade secrets; (5) patentable material; (6) proprietary information received, generated, ascertained, or discovered during the course of research conducted by or through the Center; (7) the identity of a donor or potential donor who requests anonymity; (8) information received from another person, state, or nation that would otherwise be confidential or exempt; and (9) any record generated during portions of exempt meetings. Also creates an exemption for portions of board meetings during which exempt information is presented or discussed. Allows limited disclosure under certain specified conditions. Sen. Mike Bennett (R-Bradenton) ???

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