RE: Constitution panel shortchanged public on amendment ideas | Orlando Sentinel editorial
Constitution panel explains the process – Carlos Beruff letter to the editor November 1, 2017, Orlando Sentinel
The Orlando Sentinel editorial, “Constitution panel shortchanged public on amendment ideas,” (OrlandoSentinel.com, Friday) does not accurately represent how ideas and proposed constitutional amendments submitted by Floridians are being carried forward by commissioners serving on the Constitution Revision Commission.
In addition to the more than 2,000 public proposals received by the CRC, we have received thousands of comments from Floridians who attended our public hearings and who communicated online through email and social media.
Some commissioners chose to directly sponsor public proposals submitted by Floridians without language changes. However, just like the previous CRC in 1997-98 advanced “general concepts” based on public input, part of our job as commissioners is also to recognize general themes and ideas that were submitted by Floridians, and then craft proposals in the appropriate legal language.
Several commissioners have created and sponsored proposals that reflect those ideas. A good example is the restoration of rights for felons. This was one of the most-discussed subjects during CRC public hearings across the state, and several commissioners have filed proposals regarding this topic.
Another example is the issue of E-Verify. The CRC received nearly 600 proposals on this topic alone, and in response, one CRC commissioner has filed a proposal so it can be further explored.
Carlos Beruff chairman, 2017-2018 Constitution Revision Commission