In the Departure Lounge: Slater Bayliss, Jennifer Fitzwater

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Summertime often sees a flurry of personnel moves in the world of government and politics. Continuing this occasional series, we update you on who’s in the Departure Lounge.

First up is Slater Bayliss, who has withdrawn as a lobbyist for The Villages. This comes on top of Bayliss likely losing his contract with the Pasco County Board of Commissioners. It also looks like another Bayliss client — the Okaloosa County Board of Commissioners — has put its contract out for RFP. Of course, the contract being put out for RFP doesn’t mean Bayliss has lost this client, but it is a sign that there is the blood in the water.

Another lobbyist on the move is Michael Cantens, who is no longer lobbying for the Department of Health.

While news of the resignation of Amanda Prater as chief of staff at the Department of Children and Families made the headlines, several government watchers suggest that Jennifer Fitzwater’s decision to step down as chief of staff at the Florida Department of Environmental Protection is the personnel move which will have the most impact. Fitzwater is joining the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission as Gulf restoration coordinator, reports the Florida Current. During her more than 20 years at DEP she also served as director of legislative affairs and deputy secretary for policy and planning. Her last day at DEP is July 30.

Natalie Intondi, district secretary for Rep. Victor Torres, is jumping off the legislative merry-go-round.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.