Florida Senate - 2015                                    SB 1582
       By Senator Richter
       23-01893A-15                                          20151582__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to public records; amending s. 377.45,
    3         F.S.; providing an exemption from public records
    4         requirements for proprietary business information
    5         relating to high pressure well stimulations obtained
    6         by the Department of Environmental Protection in
    7         connection with the department’s online high pressure
    8         well stimulation chemical disclosure registry;
    9         providing procedures and requirements with respect to
   10         the granting of confidential and exempt status;
   11         providing for disclosure under specified
   12         circumstances; providing for future legislative review
   13         and repeal of the exemption under the Open Government
   14         Sunset Review Act; providing a statement of public
   15         necessity; providing a contingent effective date.
   17  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   19         Section 1. Subsection (4) is added to section 377.45,
   20  Florida Statutes, as created by SB 1468, 2015 Regular Session,
   21  to read:
   22         377.45 High pressure well stimulation chemical disclosure
   23  registry.—
   24         (4)(a) Proprietary business information, as defined in s.
   25  377.24075(1)(a)-(e) and relating to high pressure well
   26  stimulations, submitted to the department as part of a permit
   27  application or held by the department in connection with the
   28  online high pressure well stimulation chemical disclosure
   29  registry, is confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s.
   30  24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution if the person submitting
   31  such proprietary business information to the department:
   32         1. Requests that the proprietary business information be
   33  kept confidential and exempt;
   34         2. Informs the department of the basis for the claim of
   35  proprietary business information; and
   36         3. Clearly marks each page of a document or specific
   37  portion of a document containing information claimed to be
   38  proprietary business information as “proprietary business
   39  information.”
   40         (b) If the department receives a public records request for
   41  a document that is marked proprietary business information under
   42  this section, the department must promptly notify the person who
   43  submitted the information as proprietary business information.
   44  The notice must inform the person that he or she has 30 days
   45  after receipt of the notice to file an action in circuit court
   46  seeking a determination as to whether the document in question
   47  contains proprietary business information and an order barring
   48  public disclosure of the document. If the person files an action
   49  within 30 days after receipt of notice of the public records
   50  request, the department may not release the document pending the
   51  outcome of the legal action. The failure to file an action
   52  within 30 days constitutes a waiver of any claim of
   53  confidentiality, and the department shall release the document
   54  as requested.
   55         (c) Confidential and exempt proprietary business
   56  information may be disclosed:
   57         1. To another governmental entity if the receiving entity
   58  agrees in writing to maintain the confidential and exempt status
   59  of the information and has verified in writing its legal
   60  authority to maintain such confidentiality; or
   61         2. When relevant in any proceeding under this part. A
   62  person involved in any proceeding under this section, including,
   63  but not limited to, an administrative law judge, a hearing
   64  officer, or a judge or justice, must maintain the
   65  confidentiality of any proprietary business information revealed
   66  at such proceeding.
   67         (d) This subsection is subject to the Open Government
   68  Sunset Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand
   69  repealed on October 2, 2020, unless reviewed and saved from
   70  repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
   71         Section 2. The Legislature finds that it is a public
   72  necessity that proprietary business information, as defined in
   73  s. 377.24075(1)(a)-(e), Florida Statutes, and relating to high
   74  pressure well stimulations, submitted to the Department of
   75  Environmental Protection as part of a permit application or held
   76  by the department in connection with the online high pressure
   77  well stimulation chemical disclosure registry, be made
   78  confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1), Florida Statutes, and
   79  s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution. Proprietary
   80  business information must be held confidential and exempt from
   81  public records requirements because the disclosure of such
   82  information would create an unfair competitive advantage for
   83  persons receiving such information and would adversely impact
   84  the service company, chemical supplier, or well owner or
   85  operator that provides chemical ingredients for a well on which
   86  high pressure well stimulations are performed. If such
   87  confidential and exempt information regarding proprietary
   88  business information were released pursuant to a public records
   89  request, others would be allowed to take the benefit of the
   90  proprietary business information without compensation or
   91  reimbursement to the service company, chemical supplier, or well
   92  owner or operator.
   93         Section 3. This act shall take effect on the same date that
   94  SB 1468 or similar legislation takes effect, if such legislation
   95  is adopted in the same legislative session or an extension
   96  thereof and becomes a law.