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transparency

On open records, half Florida’s legislators rate F or D

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Half of Florida’s legislators failed or nearly failed in a review of their support for public records and meetings given by Florida newspapers and an open-government group after this year’s legislative sessions. In a “scorecard” produced by the Florida Society of News Editors and based on information provided by Florida’s First Amendment Foundation — which tracked a priority list of public records exemptions — the 160 legislators totaled three Fs, 77 Ds, 71 Cs, and 9 Bs. Each year FSNE completes a project devoted to Sunshine…

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‘Lack of transparency’ causes calls for Rick Scott budget veto

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Both citing a “lack of transparency,” the heads of the League of Women Voters of Florida and the First Amendment Foundation are calling for Gov. Rick Scott to veto the just-passed state budget for 2017-18. But with the House of Representatives passing the budget 98-14 and the Senate approving 34-4 on Monday, there are enough votes there to override a veto, assuming none change. League President Pamela S. Goodman and FAF President Barbara A. Petersen alerted their members in separate emails on Tuesday.…

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Constitutional rewrite panel’s transparency rules would track Legislature’s

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Just like the Legislature, any two members of the new Constitution Revision Commission could meet out of the “sunshine,” according to a copy of the panel’s proposed rules. The draft rules, posted online Monday, say that “all meetings at which Commission business is discussed between more than two members of the Commission shall be open to the public, following the procedure outlined in the Florida Constitution.” If approved, the commission will follow the constitutional provision governing legislative meetings, which says…

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House Speaker Richard Corcoran making good on transparency, accountability promises

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House Speaker Richard Corcoran began his two-year speakership in November by promising a “transformational leap” in government accountability and transparency. “The Florida House will set the standard for others to emulate,” he declared. Such pronouncements are often uttered by politicians, especially those who may aspire to higher office. But one week into Florida’s annual legislative session the hard-charging Republican reformer from Land O’Lakes has a lot to show for his audacious accountability talk. While the final outcome is far from certain, under…

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Bad nursing homes benefit from AHCA’s passive-aggressive war on #transparency

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Somebody please give Shelisha Coleman a big fat raise. The Agency for Health Care Administration’s (AHCA) high profile flack works hard duty playing hardball with some of Florida’s best reporters, but makes tens of thousands of dollars less than men paid by taxpayers to tell tall tales about #Transparency. Coleman had to drop a whopping load of horsefeathers on the Orlando Sentinel last week in a laughable effort to justify AHCA’s unlawful redactions to public records. Taking up the cause…

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House panel votes to raise the bar for proposed constitutional amendments

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A lively debate on governing principles broke out Thursday as a House committee voted unanimously to ask the voters to raise the threshold for amending the Florida Constitution. HJR 321 would require approval by 66 2/3 percent of the voters to change the state’s foundational document. At present, that requires 60 percent approval. Sponsor Rick Roth, a freshman Republican from Loxahatchee, acknowledge his proposal would make it harder to change Florida’s basic law. “I watch politics very closely, and have for 30…

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Visit Florida housecleaning continues: Rick Scott calls for Will Seccombe resignation, board to publish business

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Gov. Rick Scott called on Visit Florida’s Executive Director Will Seccombe to resign Friday afternoon, continuing a bloodbath at the pseudo-state agency that saw two other top executives fired earlier in the fallout from how it handled a marketing contract with Miami rapper superstar Pitbull. In a letter the governor sent to Visit Florida’s board chairman, Scott called for a complete overhaul of how it does business, telling the board he wants to see it publish details about how it…

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