Florida Senate - 2012 COMMITTEE AMENDMENT Bill No. CS for SB 206 Barcode 803518 LEGISLATIVE ACTION Senate . House Comm: RCS . 01/23/2012 . . . . ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————— ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————— The Committee on Rules (Negron) recommended the following: 1 Senate Amendment (with title amendment) 2 3 Delete everything after the enacting clause 4 and insert: 5 Section 1. Section 286.0114, Florida Statutes, is created 6 to read: 7 286.0114 Public meetings; reasonable opportunity to be 8 heard; attorney fees.— 9 (1) Members of the public shall be given a reasonable 10 opportunity to be heard on a proposition before a board or 11 commission. The opportunity to be heard need not occur at the 12 same meeting at which the board or commission takes official 13 action on the item, if the opportunity occurs at a meeting that 14 meets the same notice requirements as the meeting at which the 15 board or commission takes official action on the item, occurs at 16 a meeting that is during the decisionmaking process, and is 17 within reasonable proximity before the meeting at which the 18 board or commission takes the official action. The opportunity 19 to be heard is subject to reasonable rules or policies adopted 20 by the board or commission to ensure the orderly conduct of a 21 public meeting, as provided in subsection (3). 22 (2) The requirements in subsection (1) do not apply to: 23 (a) An official act that must be taken to deal with an 24 emergency situation affecting the public health, welfare, or 25 safety, when compliance with the requirements would cause an 26 unreasonable delay in the ability of the board or commission to 27 act; 28 (b) An official act involving no more than a ministerial 29 act; or 30 (c) A meeting in which the board or commission is acting in 31 a quasi-judicial capacity with respect to the rights or 32 interests of a person. This paragraph does not affect the right 33 of a person to be heard as otherwise provided by law. 34 (3) Rules or policies of a board or commission adopted 35 under subsection (6) must be limited to rules or policies that: 36 (a) Limit the time an individual has to address the board 37 or commission; 38 (b) Require, at meetings in which a large number of 39 individuals wish to be heard, that representatives of groups or 40 factions on an item, rather than all of the members of the 41 groups or factions, address the board or commission; or 42 (c) Prescribe procedures or forms for an individual to use 43 in order to inform the board or commission of a desire to be 44 heard, to indicate his or her support, opposition, or neutrality 45 on a proposition, and to indicate his or her designation of a 46 representative to speak for him or her or his or her group on a 47 proposition if he or she so chooses. 48 (4) If a board or commission adopts rules or policies in 49 compliance with this section and follows such rules or policies 50 when providing an opportunity for members of the public to be 51 heard, it is presumed that the board or commission is acting in 52 compliance with this section. 53 (5) Whenever an action is filed against a board or 54 commission of any state agency or authority or any agency or 55 authority of a county, municipal corporation, or political 56 subdivision to enforce the provisions of this section or to 57 invalidate the actions of any such board, commission, agency, or 58 authority which were taken in violation of this section, the 59 court shall assess reasonable attorney fees against such agency 60 or authority if the court determines that the defendant to such 61 action acted in violation of this section. The court may assess 62 reasonable attorney fees against the individual filing such an 63 action if the court finds that the action was filed in bad faith 64 or was frivolous. Fees may be assessed against an individual 65 member or members of the board or commission of the agency or 66 authority; however, if the board or commission seeks the advice 67 of its attorney and such advice is followed, fees may not be 68 assessed against the individual member or members of the board 69 or commission. This subsection does not apply to a state 70 attorney or his or her duly authorized assistants or any officer 71 charged with enforcing the provisions of this section. 72 (6) Each board or commission that is subject to chapter 120 73 shall adopt rules under ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to administer 74 this section. 75 Section 2. This act shall take effect July 1, 2012. 76 77 ================= T I T L E A M E N D M E N T ================ 78 And the title is amended as follows: 79 Delete everything before the enacting clause 80 and insert: 81 A bill to be entitled 82 An act relating to public meetings; creating s. 83 286.0114, F.S.; requiring that a member of the public 84 be given a reasonable opportunity to be heard before a 85 board or commission takes official action on a 86 proposition before the board or commission; providing 87 that the opportunity to be heard is subject to rules 88 or policies adopted by the board or commission; 89 specifying certain exceptions; providing requirements 90 for rules or policies governing the opportunity to be 91 heard; providing that compliance with the requirements 92 of the act is presumed under certain circumstances; 93 providing for attorney fees if an action is filed 94 against a board or commission; specifying certain 95 exceptions; requiring that a board or commission that 96 is subject to ch. 120, F.S., adopt rules; providing an 97 effective date.