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Revision Commission

Constitution Revision Commission chairman outlines rule-making plans

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

The chair of the Constitution Revision Commission has told commissioners an internal “working group” will finalize the body’s operating rules by early June.

Carlos Beruff, who leads the panel charged with reviewing and suggesting rewrites to the state’s governing document, said in a Wednesday memo that several members will form a committee and “hold noticed and open meetings to deliberate the proposed rules.”

The commission held another public hearing Wednesday night on the Florida A&M University campus in Tallahassee.

Critics, including the League of Women Voters of Florida, have complained that the commission is holding hearings without having adopted final rules since its March 20 organization meeting.

“None of us can have confidence in the work of the CRC without having rules to guide the Commission’s work and assure the public that this will be an effort worthy of respect,” LWVF President Pamela Goodman said in a recent letter to Beruff.

Beruff said that the rules working group will include Tim Cerio and Brecht Heuchan, selected by Gov. Rick Scott; Don Gaetz and Carolyn Timmann, selected by Senate President Joe Negron; state Sen. Tom Lee and Rich Newsome, selected by House Speaker Richard Corcoran; and Arthenia Joyner and Roberto Martinez, selected by Chief Justice Jorge Labarga.

“We will vote on the proposed rules, and on all amendments, at a full commission meeting to be held in early June,” Beruff wrote.

The draft rules raised hackles among good government groups because they allow any two commissioners to meet out of the “sunshine.”

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Before joining Florida Politics, journalist and attorney James Rosica was state government reporter for The Tampa Tribune. He attended journalism school in Washington, D.C., working at dailies and weekly papers in Philadelphia after graduation. Rosica joined the Tallahassee Democrat in 1997, later moving to the courts beat, where he reported on the 2000 presidential recount. In 2005, Rosica left journalism to attend law school in Philadelphia, afterwards working part time for a public-interest law firm. Returning to writing, he covered three legislative sessions in Tallahassee for The Associated Press, before joining the Tribune’s re-opened Tallahassee bureau in 2013. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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