Feb – 24

We made it through the last committee week in the Legislature. We’re keeping a vigilant watch on any bills being filed ahead of the March 7th deadline. This coming week, legislators head back to their districts to hear from their constituents before heading back to Tallahassee to represent them.

Kelly Quintero, LWVFL Legislative Advocate

EDUCATION

  • The Senate Education Committee passed SB 367 sponsored by Sen. Simmons. This bill sets requirements for charter schools to receive funding from the state and bans personal financial enrichment of charter school operators in order to receive funds for projects. Sen. Gary Farmer withdrew his amendments from SB 367 but we anticipate a revised version of SB 367 to include language from those amendments. More here: http://bit.ly/2017SB367

ELECTIONS & ETHICS

    • On Thursday, the House Oversight, Transparency & Administration subcommittee unanimously passed HJR 321 that would require increasing the threshold from 60% to 66.66% of voters to approve a constitutional amendment. Legislators argued they were elected to represent the will of the voters and thus would approve this bill because it was how their constituents’ voices can be heard. I spoke in opposition of this bill for the League. Read more here: http://bit.ly/FLHJR321

“These resolutions clearly squelch the voice of the people and make the one process citizens have as a last resort…”

Find our President’s complete comments on HJR 321/SJR 866: http://bit.ly/2kV3IhT

  • The Senate Ethics and Elections Committee narrowly approved SB 352. This bill hopes to address the handling of political redistricting and how quickly the courts handle redistricting, especially prior to an election. The Lobby Corps waived in opposition of this bill on behalf of the League. Read it here: http://bit.ly/FLRedistrict 

 

  • HJR 1 proposes to limit Florida appellate judges to term limits, only allowing them to serve two consecutive terms. The House Judiciary Committee passed it 11-8 on Tuesday. The League is in opposition to this bill. http://bit.ly/2017HJR1

 

GUN SAFETY

  • On Wednesday, I testified in opposition of HB 245 in the House Criminal Justice Subcommittee that would shift the burden of proof to prosecutors. This would continue the increase of homicide and firearm-related deaths since the 2005 passage of the Stand Your Ground bill. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2017HB245 

HEALTHCARE

  • The House Health Quality Subcommittee heard HB 19, that would allow women to sue doctors who performed an abortion without their informed consent. Women would be able to seek damages for physical and psychological harms for up to 10 years when they haven’t been fully informed. The League is in opposition to this bill. Read about it here: http://bit.ly/2017HB19 

NATURAL RESOURCES

  • We finally saw some action for Natural Resources this week. SB 90 sponsored by Sen. Bradley was approved by the Senate Communications, Energy and Public Utilities Committee. The League is in support of this bill that will expand solar opportunities for Florida. http://bit.ly/2017SB90 
  • In the same Senate committee, SB 234 passed. The League has no position on this bill right now as we implore the Legislature to fully fund Amendment 1 prior to dedicating additional funds elsewhere. Find it here: http://bit.ly/2017SB234

Looking for a specific bill or issue that you think the League should take a position on? LWVF prides itself on being a grassroots organization and receives suggestions on which issues we should make a priority from local league each year. From this list we’re able to create a comprehensive list of priorities and lobby for or against these issues in the Capital.

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