2013 Legislative Report for Period Ending March 29

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Symbol Meaning
Current action
CS Committee Substitute
P Passed both Chambers
W Withdrawn from further consideration

For Period Ending March 29

ANIMAL CONTROL/HUMANE SOCIETIES

HB 997 Animal Shelter Records: Requires public or private animal shelters, humane organizations, or animal control agencies to create and maintain records regarding the intake and disposition of animals they take in. Stipulates that such records are subject to disclosure and authorizes a fee of up to $1 per one-sided copy. Amends 823.15(1). Companion to SB 674. Rep. W. Travis Cummings (R-Orange Park)

  • H. Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee: A strike-all amendment is adopted; reported favorably as a committee substitute. As amended, CS/HB 997 requires public or private animal shelters, humane organizations, or animal control agencies to create and maintain records regarding the intake and disposition of animals. Stipulates that such records are subject to disclosure and authorizes fees in accordance with chapter 119, F.S., Florida’s public records law. Now in H. Local and Federal Affairs Committee.

COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES

CS/HB 359 Exemption/University DSOs: Creates an exemption for portions of a university direct support organization (DSO) board meetings at which the identity of a donor or prospective donor, proposals seeking research funding from the organization, or a plan or program for either initiating or supporting research is discussed. Amends s. 1004.28(5), F.S. Companion to SB 1276. Rep. Cary Pigman (R-Sebring)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: A minor technical amendment is adopted; reported favorably as a committee substitute. Now in H. Judiciary Committee.

COURT RECORDS

HB 943 Exemption/Settlements on Behalf of Minors: Creates a public record exemption for court records relating to the settlement of a claim on behalf of a minor or ward relating to guardianship. Allows access to such records by a guardian ad litem, the minor if over 14, and the minor’s attorney. Companion to SB 610. Amends s. 744.3701, F.S. Rep. Elaine Schwartz (D-Hollywood)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Judiciary Committee.

HB 1183 Exemption/Forensic Behavioral Health Evaluations: Creates a public record exemption for forensic behavioral health evaluations of mentally deficient or mentally ill defendants filed with the court. Stipulates that an evaluation may be released if it becomes part of a clinical record. Creates s. 916.1065, F.S. Companion to 824. Rep. Joe Gibbons (D-Pembroke Park)

  • H. Criminal Justice Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Government Operations Subcommittee.

HB 1185 Exemption/Participants in Drug Court Treatment Programs: Creates a public record exemption for records of a participant’s activity in a treatment-based drug court program, including the initial screening, substance abuse screenings, behavioral health evaluations, and status reports. Creates s. 397.334, F.S. Companion to SB 1014. Rep. Joe Gibbons (D-Pembroke Park)

  • H. Criminal Justice Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Government Operations Subcommittee.

CRIMINAL JUSTICE

CS/HB 361 Exemption/Criminal Justice Commissions: Creates an exemption for those portions of meetings of a “duly constituted criminal justice commission” during which commissioners discuss active criminal intelligence or investigative information if such information is currently before the commission or may foreseeably come before the commission. Companion to SB 1042. Rep. Dave Kerner (D-Palm Springs)

  • H. Judiciary Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

HB 725 Exemption/Child Abuse Death Review Committees: Currently, s. 383.412, F.S., provides an exemption for portions of meetings of child abuse death review committees at which exempt information is discussed, requiring that those closed portions of meetings be recorded. HB 725 deletes the recording requirement. Amends s. 383.412, F.S. Rep. Gayle Harrell (R-Port St. Lucie) 🙁

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 1327 Exemption/Criminal History – Human Trafficking Victims: SB 1644 provides for the court-ordered expungement of a human trafficking victim’s criminal history. SB 1734 creates a public record exemption preventing disclosure of any record of a human trafficking victim’s criminal history that has been expunged by a court order. Creates s. 943.0583(9). Companion to SB 1734. Rep. Ross Spano (R- Riverview)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Judiciary Committee.

ETHICS AND ELECTIONS

HB 7131 Ethics – Public Records Training/Complaint Disclosure: In pertinent part, requires mandatory training in open records and open meetings law for “constitutional officers” including the Governor, the Lieutenant Governor, the Attorney General, the Chief Financial Officer, the Commissioner of Agriculture, state attorneys, public defenders, sheriffs, tax collectors, property appraisers, supervisors of elections, clerks of the circuit court, county commissioners, district school board members, and superintendents of schools. Stipulates that the Legislature must provide ethics training pursuant to the rules of each chamber. Also, amends s. 112.324, F.S., preventing the disclosure of an ethics complaint or referral within 30 days of an election unless the complaint or referral is based on personal information or information other than hearsay. Currently, the law prohibits disclosure of such information within 5 days of an election. Creates s. 112.3142, F. S., and amends s. 112.324. Companion to SB 2. H. Ethics and Elections Subcommittee

HB 7133 Exemption/Ethics – Written Referrals: Creates a public record exemption for written referrals and related records held by the Ethics Commission, the Governor, FDLE, or state attorneys. Also exempts records relating to preliminary investigations of such referrals held by the Commission. Creates an exemption for Commission proceedings at which referrals are discussed or acted upon. Stipulates that the exemptions apply until the complaint is dismissed as legally insufficient, the subject of the referral requests that the records be made public, the Commission determines it will not investigate the referral, or when probable cause is determined. Amends s. 112.324(2), F.S. Companion to SB 4. H. Ethics and Elections Subcommittee

FINANCIAL TRANSACTIONS

HB 7135 Exemption/ Financial Regulation Payments: HB 217 requires the Office of Financial Regulation (OFR) to maintain payment instrument transaction information in a centralized database. “Payment instrument” is statutorily defined as “a check, draft, warrant, money order, travelers check, electronic instrument, or other instrument, payment of money, or monetary value whether or not negotiable.” HB 7135 creates a public record exemption for payment transaction information held by OFR which identifies a licensee, payor, payee, or conductor contained in the database. However, it “does not include an instrument that is redeemable by the issuer in merchandise or service, a credit card voucher, or a letter of credit.” Creates 560.312, F.S. H. Insurance and Banking Subcommittee 🙁

FINANCIAL TRANSPARENCY

SB 1764 Transparency in Government Spending: Makes significant amendments to s. 215.985, F.S, the Transparency Florida Act, first enacted in 2009, providing for greater fiscal transparency in two phases. Phase One requires the Executive Office of Governor (EOG), the Department of Management Services (DMS), and the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) to create and maintain various transparency websites, which are described below. Phase Two requires the User Experience Task Force to develop and recommend a design for consolidating existing state-managed financial transparency websites, including, if necessary, a complete redesign of data submission and inclusion. SB 1764 requires the Task Force to submit a work plan by October 1, 2013, which includes a review of all relevant websites; options for reducing the number of sites; and options for linking expenditure data with related invoices and contracts. The Task Force’s final recommendation is due March 1, 2014, and the recommended design must allow for an “intuitive and cohesive” user experience allowing users to move easily between varied types of related data. S. Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee 🙂

Under SB 1764, Phase One websites include:

Executive Office of Governor must create and maintain:

(1) a single website providing access to all other transparency websites required under the Act, stipulating that the EOG website must be user-friendly and compatible with all major web browsers.
(2) a state budget website, providing

o searchable online access to disbursement data for each appropriation;
o appropriation adjustments;
o the status of spending authority for each appropriation;
o position and rate information for approved positions;
o allotments for planned agency expenditures;
o trust fund balance reports; general revenue fund balance reports;
o fixed capital outlay project data;
o a 10-year history of agency appropriations;
o links to state audits or reports related to the expenditure or dispersal of state funds; and
o links to approved programs or activity descriptions.

(3) a fiscal planning website, including, at a minimum,

o the long-range financial outlook adopted by the Legislative Budget Commission;
o instructions to agencies relating to legislative budget requests;
o agency budget requests;
o capital improvement plans;
o long-range program plans; and
o the Governor’s budget recommendation.

The fiscal planning website must be searchable by fiscal year, agency, appropriation category, and keywords.

Department of Management Services is required to create and maintain a website providing current information relating to all state employees, including state universities. For each employee, DMS must report, at a minimum, the

o name and salary or hourly rate of pay;
o position number, class code, and class title; and
o employing agency and budget entity.

Such information must be searchable by state agency or university, and by employee name, salary range, or class code, and must be downloadable in a format allowing offline analysis.

Starting November 1, 2013, and each year following, DMS must recommend whether the employee website should be expanded to include the Florida College System, school districts, charter schools, and local governments.

The Chief Financial Officer is required to maintain a state contract tracking system website relating to contracts procured by state agencies. Within 30 days after executing a contract, each state agency must post the following information and documentation on the CFO’s website:

o the names of the contracting entities;
o the procurement method;
o the beginning and ending dates of the contract;
o the nature or type of commodities or services purchased;
o contract unit prices and deliverables;
o total compensation to be paid or received under the contract;
o all payments made to the contractor to date;
o applicable contract performance measures;
o if a no-bid contract, the justification for such action, including a citation to the statutory exemption from competitive solicitation; and
o electronic copies of the contract and procurement documents, appropriately redacted.

Requires agencies to post modifications or amendments to existing contracts within 30 days, and provides procedures for redacting exempt information.

Senate: On Third Reading, an amendment excluding records that could reveal attorney work product or strategies from the internet-posting requirement is adopted. Passed the Senate unanimously. Now in H. Messages.

INVESTIGATIONS

CS/HB 1075 Exemption/Complaints of Employee Misconduct: Creates a public record exemption for a complaint of misconduct filed against a public employee, as well as all information obtained while investigating that complaint. Stipulates that the exemption expires once the investigation ceases to be active or until the agency provides the employee with written notice that it has concluded the investigation. Creates s. 119.071(2)(k). Companion to SB 1318. Rep. Ricardo Rangel (D-Kissimmee)

  • H. State Administration Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

SB 1800 OGSR/Investigations – Employment Discrimination Complaints: Section 119.071(2)(g), F.S., provides a public record exemption for all complaints and other records relating to employment discrimination complaints held by an agency until a finding of probable cause, the investigation is no longer active, or the complaint is made part of the official record of any hearing or court proceeding. SB 1800 reenacts the exemption with only minor technical changes. S. Governmental Oversight and Accountability

PERSONAL INFORMATION

HB 1115 Exemption/Dental Workforce Surveys: Creates a public record exemption for all personal identifying information contained in dental workforce surveys completed by dentists and dental hygienists held by the Department of Health. Companion to SB 1066. Rep. Alan Williams (D-Tallahassee)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Health and Human Services Committee.

HB 1333 Exemption/Driver Toll Information: Section 388.155(6), F.S. currently provides a public record exemption for personal identifying information provided to the Department of Transportation, a county, or an expressway authority in connection with using a credit card, charge card, or check for prepayment of tolls. HB 1333 amends and slightly expands the exemption to cover all personal identifying information of drivers who use toll facilities regardless of the form of payment or prepayment. Amends s. 388.155(6), F.S. Companion to SB 1424. Rep. Mike La Rosa (R-Saint Cloud)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: A minor amendment is adopted. Reported favorably as a committee substitute. Now in H. Economic Affairs Committee.

HB 7085 OGSR/Organ and Tissue Registry – Donor Information: Reenacts, without modification, the public record exemption information protecting the identity of organ and tissue donors. Reenacts s. 765.51551, F.S. Companion to SB 452. H. Government Operations Subcommittee

  • H. State Administration Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

HB 7107 OGSR/Personal Information – Paratransit Services: Reenacts, without modification, s. 119.071(5)(h), F.S., providing a public record exemption for personal identifying information of those receiving or applying for paratransit services. Companion to SB 1768. H. Government Operations Subcommittee

  • H. State Administration Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

PROPRIETARY INFORMATION

CS/HB 649 Exemption/Electric Utility – Proprietary Business Information: Creates a public record exemption for proprietary confidential business information provided by a private or out-of-state entity to a public electric utility in connection with the utility’s due diligence review of an electric project or a project to improve the delivery, cost, or diversification of fuel or renewable energy resources. CS/HB 649 defines “proprietary confidential business information” as information provided to an electric utility by an entity which is private in that disclosure of the information would cause harm to the entity’s business operations and which has not otherwise been disclosed, and includes (1) trade secrets; (2) internal audit controls and reports of internal auditors; (3) security measures, systems, or proceedings; (4) information concerning bids and other contractual data; and (5) information relating to competitive interests. Creates s. 119.0713(4), F.S. Companion to SB 714. Rep. W. Travis Cummings (R-Orange Park)

  • H. Regulatory Affairs Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

HB 745 Exemption/Fracturing Chemical Usage Disclosure Act – Trade Secrets: HB 725 creates the Fracturing Chemical Usage Disclosure Act, directing the Division of Resource Management in DEP to establish an online hydraulic fracturing chemical registry. HB 745 creates a public record exemption for trade secrets relating to hydraulic fracturing treatments obtained by the Division of Resource Management (DEP) in connection with the online hydraulic fracturing chemical registry. Stipulates that the person submitting trade secret information must (1) request that it be kept confidential and exempt and (2) inform the division of the basis for claim of trade secret. HB 745 requires DEP to make a determination, subject to notice and an opportunity for a hearing, whether the information is truly a trade secret. Creates s. 377.45, F.S. Rep. Ray Rodrigues (R-Fort Myers)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: A strike-all amendment is adopted; reported favorably as a committee substitute. As amended, CS/HB 745 creates a public record exemption for trade secrets relating to hydraulic fracturing treatments obtained by the Division in connection with the online hydraulic fracturing chemical registry. Stipulates that the person submitting trade secret information must (1) request that it be kept confidential and exempt; (2) inform the division of the basis for claim of trade secret; and (3) clearly mark each page of a document or a specific portion of the document claimed to be trade secret as “trade secret.” Stipulates that if DEP receives a public record request for documents marked as trade secret, the department must notify the person asserting the claim, allowing that person 30 days to file a court action seeking a determination on whether the information is trade secret. Now in H. State Affairs Committee.

CS/HB 823 Exemption/Insurance Solvency – Proprietary Business Information: CS/HB 823 creates a public record exemption for proprietary business information related to insurance solvency held by the Office of Insurance Regulation. Defines “proprietary business information” as information owned or controlled by an insurer which is (1) intended to be and is treated by the insurer as private in that disclosure of the information would cause harm to the insurer’s business operations and has not been disclosed and (2) is not otherwise readily ascertainable or publicly available. Proprietary business information includes trade secrets; information relating to competitive interests; the source, nature, and amount of the consideration used in carrying out a merger or other acquisition; information relating to bids or other contractual data; and internal auditing controls and reports; statutorily required actuarial opinion summaries; divestiture notices; enterprise risk reports; and information received from another governmental entity. Allows disclosure under certain, specified conditions. Creates s. 624.4212, F.S. Companion to SB 834. Rep. Clay Ingram (R-Pensacola)

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Two minor, technical amendments are adopted; reported favorably as a committee substitute. Now in H. Regulatory Affairs Committee.

HB 7095 Exemption/Citizens Property Insurance – Proprietary Business Information: HB 7093 creates the Citizen’s Property Insurance Corporation policyholder eligibility clearinghouse program. HB 7095 creates a public record exemption for all underwriting guidelines, manuals, rating information, and other underwriting or instructions submitted by an insurer to the new eligibility clearinghouse program. S. 627.3518, F.S. Companion to SB 1606. H. Insurance and Banking Subcommittee 🙁

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

PUBLIC EMPLOYEES

CS/HB 529 Exemption/DOH – Home Address: Creates a public record exemption for the home addresses, telephone numbers, and photographs of current and former Department of Health personnel whose duties include or support the investigation and prosecution of complaints filed against health care practitioners or the inspection of licensed facilities. Also exempts the names, home addresses, telephone numbers, and place of employment of the spouses and children of such personnel, as well as the names and locations of schools and day care facilities attended by their children. Stipulates that the exemption will apply only if the person seeking the protection of the exemption has shown that a reasonable effort to protect such information through other, publicly available sources has been made. Amends s. 119.071(4)(d), F.S. Companion to SB 60. Rep. Doc Renuart (R-Ponte Vedra Beach)

  • H. Health and Human Services Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

HB 731 Exemption/Names of Spouses: Creates a public record exemption for the names of the spouses and children of active or former law enforcement personnel, correctional officers, and certain employees of the Department of Children and Families, Department of Health, and the Department of Revenue. Amends s. 119.071(4)(d)2, F.S. Companion to SB 376. Amends s. 119.071(4)(d)2, F.S. Rep. Dave Kerner (D-Palm Springs) 🙁

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Judiciary Committee.

RIGHT TO SPEAK

HB 23 Public Meetings/Right to Speak: CS/HB 23 defines “board or commission” to include boards or commissions of state agencies, and counties, cities, and political subdivisions. Requires boards and commissions to provide members of the public with a reasonable opportunity to speak before a board or commission makes a final decision, subject to reasonable rules of the board or commission to ensure reasonable conduct. Stipulates that the right to speak does not have to be at the same meeting at which action is taken, but must occur within a reasonable proximity in time. The right to speak would not apply to certain meetings including an official act related to an emergency; a ministerial act, including approval of minutes and ceremonial proclamations; any meeting that is exempt from the open meetings law under s. 286.011, F.S.; and quasi-judicial meetings with respect to the rights or interests of a person. Requires the assessment of reasonable attorney fees if a court finds that an agency violated the right to speak, but stipulates that any action taken will not be void as a result of the violation. Creates s. 286.0114, F.S. Companion to SB 50. Rep. Ray Rodrigues (R-Fort Myers) 🙂

  • H. Rulemaking Oversight and Repeal Subcommittee: Reported favorably by a vote of 9/2, with Reps. John Tobia (R-Melbourne Beach) and Barbara Watson (D-Miami Gardens) voting against the bill. Now in H. State Affairs Committee.

SCHOOLS

CS/HB 127 Public Meetings/School Boards Meetings: In pertinent part, requires district school boards to hold at least one regular meeting each quarter during the evening hours and the district board shall develop criteria for deciding when to convene the evening meeting. Amends s. 1001.372(1), F.S. Companion to SB 134. Rep. Richard Stark (D-Weston) 🙂

  • H. Rulemaking Oversight and Repeal Subcommittee: Reported favorably by a vote of 10/1, with Rep. John Tobia (R-Melbourne Beach) voting against the bill. Now in H. Education Appropriations Subcommittee.

CS/SB 134 Public Meetings/School Boards: Requires school boards to hold at least one regular meeting each quarter during the evening hours, and to create written criteria for deciding when to do so. The bill stipulates that a school board will be in compliance with the evening meeting requirement if it adopts a policy requiring that the portion of a regular meeting that is open to public comment begin no earlier than 4:30 p.m. Companion to HB 127. Sen. Jeremy Ring (D-Margate) 🙂

  • Senate: An amendment allowing the chair of the district school board or a majority of the board’s members to call a special meeting if the district school superintendent falls to call such a meeting when requested to do so is adopted. Rolled to Third Reading.

HB 991 Exemption/School After-Drill Reports: HB 989 requires school districts to conduct emergency lockdown drills at least as often as emergency evacuation drills. HB 991 creates a public record exemption for a school district’s after-drill report and the recommendations from law enforcement officers or fire officials. Companion to SB 800. Creates s. 1006.67, F.S. Rep. Ray Rodrigues (R-Fort Meyers) ???

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. Education Committee.

HB 7089 Exemption/School Lunch Program: HB 7087 shifts responsibilities for the school lunch program from the State Board of Education regarding school food and nutrition programs. HB 7089 creates a public record exemption for the personal identifying information of an applicant or a participant in a school food and nutrition service program held by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, the Department of Children and Families, or the Department of Education. Creates s. 595.409. F.S. Companion to SB 1756. H. Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee.

  • H. Government Operations Subcommittee: Reported favorably. Now in H. State Affairs Committee.

VOTER INFORMATION

CS/HB 249 Exemption/Voter Email Address: HB 247 requires that the uniform statewide voter registration application be designed to elicit email addresses from voter registration applicants and registered voters. HB 249 creates a public record exemption for email addresses of voters and voter registration applicants. Amends s. 97.0585(1), F.S. Companion to SB 1260. Rep. Bryan Nelson (R-Apopka) 🙁

  • H. State Administration Committee: Reported favorably. Now on H. Calendar.

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