Sorry for the delay. Had to attend a Tampa Chamber of Commerce meeting this morning.
There are 46 House Bills on third reading, including:
SB 464 by Sen. Gary Siplin, designating my birthday (Jan 6) as “Three Kings Day” in Florida;
SB 506 by Sen. Mike Fasano, creating the Tampa Bay Regional Transportation Authority;
SB 900 by Sen. Bill Posey, allowing voters to revoke a signature on a initiative petition;
SB 1638 by Sen. Lee Constantine, prohibiting gift cards and gift certificates sold in Florida from having an expiration date or charging a fee; and
SB 1710 by Sen. Steven Oelrich, allowing the University of Florida, Florida State University, and the University of South Florida to charge a differential tuition of up 30 to 40% more than the other eight universities, provided the total annual increase is less than 15% each year, and for the purpose of supporting undergraduate education.
Among the bills on Special Order are:
SB 134 by Sen. Larcenia Bullard, allowing gambling on dominoes at parimutuel cardooms;
SB 1376 by Sen. Dennis Jones, which allows the Florida Department of Lottery to hold patents, and will likely be amended to include a provision permitting video lottery terminals (Class II slot machines) at certain parimutuel facilities; the tax from the video lottery terminals will replace the ‘required local match’ in the Florida Education Funding Program, allowing school districts to cut their property taxes;
SB 156 by Sen. Steven Geller, which adds Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom to the periods of wartime service for which official ‘veteran’ designation can be recognized; the official wartime periods provide veterans who served during them with various benefits and protections under Florida law;
SB 2142 by Sen. Ted Deutch, a comprehensive bill on Florida’s investments managed by the State Board of Administration, the body that oversees how Florida’s tax money is invested; one of the provisions will require the Board to divest from companies that do business with Iran and Sudan. (The bill still allows investment in private equity funds which invest in prohibited companies, and other indirect holdings.)
There are 28 Bills on third reading in the Senate, four of which are the Senate tax reform bills that will remain on third reading. Most of the rest are noncontroversial social service and education bills. One interesting bill is SB 1864 by Sen. Bill Posey, expanding the hurricane mitigation grant program and naming it the “My Safe Florida Home Program.” (This bill was on third reading yesterday, probably waiting for the House Version, HB 7057, to arrive from the House.)
Today’s Senate Special Order Calendar has a number of interesting bills, including:
SB 96 by Sen. Burt Saunders, which expands the entertainment industry development program to bring more movie and television projects to Florida; the House version HB 1325 is waiting in Messages;
SB 996 by Sen. Mike Bennett creates an Energy Efficient Products Sales Tax Holiday from October 1st through the 14th; the House version HB 7123 is waiting in Messages;
The Senate will also be passing it’s Local Bill Calendar today. As noted when the House passed it’s version earlier during Session, the Senate will read all of the bills by title twice (for Second and Third Readings) then pass all of the bills with one vote.