Florida Senate - 2018 CS for SB 28 By the Committee on Judiciary; and Senator Montford 590-03192-18 201828c1 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act for the relief of Christopher Cannon; providing 3 an appropriation to compensate him for injuries and 4 damages sustained as a result of the alleged 5 negligence of the City of Tallahassee; providing that 6 the appropriation satisfies all present and future 7 claims arising out of the alleged negligent acts; 8 providing a limitation on the payment of attorney and 9 lobbying fees and costs; providing an effective date. 10 11 WHEREAS, on December 16, 2015, Christopher Cannon was 12 driving his motorcycle home from work, and 13 WHEREAS, a City of Tallahassee Dial-A-Ride driver, 14 believing that an intersection where she was preparing to make a 15 turn was clear of traffic, made a left-hand turn in front of 16 Christopher Cannon, who crashed into the left front of the Dial 17 A-Ride vehicle, causing him to be ejected from his motorcycle 18 across two lanes of traffic, and 19 WHEREAS, Christopher Cannon was transported to Tallahassee 20 Memorial Hospital where he was treated for a pulmonary 21 contusion, a right sixth rib fracture, a right scapular 22 fracture, a right kidney laceration, an adrenal gland contusion, 23 a right tibia fracture, a right fibula fracture, a right mid 24 shaft femoral fracture, and a spleen laceration, and 25 WHEREAS, surgeons placed a rod secured by four screws 26 through Christopher Cannon’s tibia and inserted a plate and four 27 screws to realign his right humerus fracture, and 28 WHEREAS, Christopher Cannon was discharged approximately 2 29 weeks after the accident, but was readmitted 1 week after his 30 initial discharge due to a wound infection that required 31 additional surgery for debridement, and 32 WHEREAS, on March 30, 2016, a mandatory hearing was 33 conducted by the Leon County Court pursuant to ss. 318.14 and 34 318.19, Florida Statutes, for the purpose of making a 35 determination as to whether the Dial-A-Ride driver committed a 36 violation of s. 316.122, Florida Statutes, related to yield of 37 right-of-way, vehicle turning left, and 38 WHEREAS, on April 4, 2016, the Leon County Court entered an 39 order finding that the Dial-A-Ride driver violated s. 316.122, 40 Florida Statutes, and that the victim suffered serious bodily 41 harm as a direct result of the resulting accident, and 42 WHEREAS, on July 11, 2016, counsel for Christopher Cannon 43 filed a claim against the City of Tallahassee seeking 44 compensation for the injuries and damages arising out of the 45 accident in the Circuit Court of the Second Judicial Circuit in 46 and for Leon County, Case No. 2016 CA 1560, alleging the 47 negligence per se of the Dial-A-Ride driver and the negligent 48 hiring, training, disciplining, supervision, and retention of 49 the Dial-A-Ride driver by the City of Tallahassee, and 50 WHEREAS, counsel for Christopher Cannon alleged that the 51 Dial-A-Ride driver committed negligence per se by failing to 52 yield to oncoming traffic when making a left turn in violation 53 of s. 316.122, Florida Statutes, during the accident, and 54 WHEREAS, counsel for Christopher Cannon alleged that the 55 City of Tallahassee had a duty to exercise reasonable care in 56 the hiring, training, disciplining, supervision, and retention 57 of the Dial-A-Ride driver, and 58 WHEREAS, counsel for Christopher Cannon alleged that the 59 City of Tallahassee breached its duty of reasonable care by 60 failing to exercise its duty of reasonable care to effectively 61 and reasonably train, discipline, supervise, and retain or 62 discharge the Dial-A-Ride driver, who incurred multiple traffic 63 citations during the period from 1994 through 2012, and 64 WHEREAS, counsel for Christopher Cannon alleged that as a 65 direct and proximate result of the negligence of the City of 66 Tallahassee in failing to exercise a reasonable duty of care, 67 and but for that negligence, Christopher Cannon suffered bodily 68 injury that resulted in pain and suffering; disability; 69 disfigurement; mental anguish; loss of capacity for the 70 enjoyment of life; costs associated with his hospitalization, 71 medical and nursing care, and treatment; loss of earnings; and 72 loss of the ability to earn money, and 73 WHEREAS, Christopher Cannon’s past medical expenses and 74 lost wages are in excess of $225,000 and it is anticipated that 75 he will incur additional medical expenses in the future as a 76 result of his injuries, and 77 WHEREAS, following mediation, a final order was entered in 78 the case approving a settlement in the sum of $700,000 between 79 Christopher Cannon and the City of Tallahassee to satisfy all 80 present and future claims arising out of the factual situation 81 described in this act, and 82 WHEREAS, pursuant to the final order, the City of 83 Tallahassee has paid $200,000 to Christopher Cannon under the 84 statutory limits of liability set forth in s. 768.28, Florida 85 Statutes, and $500,000 remains unpaid, NOW, THEREFORE, 86 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 87 88 Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are 89 found and declared to be true. 90 Section 2. The City of Tallahassee is authorized and 91 directed to appropriate from funds not otherwise encumbered and 92 to draw a warrant in the sum of $500,000 payable to Christopher 93 Cannon as compensation for injuries and damages sustained. 94 Section 3. The amount paid by the City of Tallahassee 95 pursuant to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the amount awarded 96 under this act are intended to provide the sole compensation for 97 all present and future claims arising out of the factual 98 situation described in this act which resulted in injuries and 99 damages to Christopher Cannon. Of the amount awarded under this 100 act, the total amount paid for attorney fees may not exceed 101 $100,000, the total amount paid for lobbying fees may not exceed 102 $25,000, and no amount may be paid for costs or other similar 103 expenses. 104 Section 4. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.