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constitutional amendments

Constitution review panel could tackle ‘write-in loophole’

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A Constitution Revision Commission committee on Wednesday began considering whether to change Florida’s primary election system, including buttoning up what’s known as the “write-in loophole.” That allows a write-in candidate to close a primary. The commission’s Ethics and Elections Committee heard from advocates and some of the state’s elections supervisors, but took no action.

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Rick Scott names Tom Grady to constitutional review panel

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Former state Rep. Tom Grady will take Jimmy Patronis‘ place on the Constitution Revision Commission (CRC), Gov. Rick Scott announced Thursday evening. In picking Grady, a Naples attorney and a friend of Scott’s, the governor passed over the three alternates he previously selected to fill an empty seat on the commission, which will review the state’s governing document for possible changes.

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Florida Bar will focus on ‘protecting the courts’ during constitutional revision process

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The new president of The Florida Bar says the organization is standing by to offer “technical legal” support to the Constitution Revision Commission as it readies to amend the state’s governing document, which could include changes affecting the judicial branch. But Michael J. Higer, a partner in Berger Singerman’s Miami office, won’t say which public proposals already filed he favors—or fears. He assumed the Bar presidency on June 23. “It is too early in the process to focus on any…

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Constitution Revision Commission to hold first meeting

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The Constitution Revision Commission has launched a website and announced an organizational meeting next Monday. The meeting will be 2-4 p.m. in the Capitol’s Senate chamber, with a brief agenda of “Welcoming Remarks, Oath of Office, Rules of the Commission, Ethics Briefing.” The panel, which convenes every 20 years, will review and suggest changes to the state’s governing document after holding public meetings across the state. Its newest hire is Meredith Beatrice, who was spokeswoman for Secretary of State Ken Detzner, and is…

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Bill limiting property tax assessments ready for House floor

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A bill that would extend a constitutional amendment to stop large spikes a property’s taxable value is ready for a floor vote in the House. HJR 21 cleared the House Commerce Committee with a 24-2 vote, and previously made it through the House Ways and Means Committee with a 16-1 vote. Back in 2008, Florida voters approved an amendment that capped the increase in assessed value for non-homesteaded residential property at 10 percent a year, except when it comes to taxes…

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Mitch Perry Report for 11.3.16 – Guns, pot and minimum wage measures to be voted on next week across the country

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In Florida, we have two constitutional amendments on the ballot that will be decided next Tuesday. The way it looks now, it would be a major upset if Amendment 2, the medical marijuana initiative, fails to get 60 percent of the electorate’s vote. Then again, conventional wisdom was that it would pass in 2014, and it came up a few points short. There’s also Amendment 1, the solar power amendment, where the momentum seems to be going against it at the…

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Panel finds no easy answers on costs of voter rights restoration

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A state panel struggled Monday to figure out a price tag for the proposed Florida Voter Restoration Amendment, which would automatically restore voting rights to felons who have completed their sentences. The Financial Impact Estimating Conference heard testimony from a variety of state criminal justice agencies indicating it might be hard to nail down what the amendment would cost. The panel planned to reconvene next week for additional study. Amy Baker, coordinator for the Legislative Office of Economic and Demographic Research, the…

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