Tuesday’s Tallahassee agenda runs the gamut

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Tuesday’s legislative agenda runs the gamut of Florida issues — from the contentious (trauma centers, nurse practitioners, Sharia law and needle exchanges) to the outright strange (the “pop tart” bill).

A Senate committee will take up the “pop part” bill, which removes punishments for schoolchildren who use partially eaten pastries as a play gun, and a change in community service requirements for Bright Future Scholarships by adding internships and work on political campaigns. Another will consider having high school students take a personal finance course before graduation.

The Senate Health Policy Committee will also consider two hotly contested measures: one that expands the scope of advanced nurse practitioners and the other that modifies the rules for approving trauma centers.

House committees will consider new restrictions on pharmacy audits, reforming child protective services and a method to convert water control districts to “community development districts.” 

Also in the House is a measure creating a pilot program in Miami-Dade County for needle and syringe exchanges.

For the fourth year in a row, Sen. Alan Hays attempts to pass legislation banning the use of Sharia laws in the court system; the Senate Judiciary Committee will hear SB 386 – referred to as the “anti-Sharia” law—prohibiting foreign laws that infringe on constitutional rights. The bill will allow people to file a waiver if they want to abide by the laws of their country or religion.

8 a.m.:

The House Insurance & Banking Subcommittee meet in Sumner Hall, Room 404 of the House Office Building CS/HB 31 – Dentists; CS/HB 939 — Bail Bond Premiums; HB 783 – allowing the free and open marketplace to continue to be available for aftermarket sales products in financing motor vehicles; and HB 1395 — Prohibits transmittal of electronic bail bonds by unlicensed individuals.

9 a.m.:

The House Higher Education & Workforce Subcommittee meets in Reed Hall of the House Office Building to hear HB 1053 — Teacher Education.

The Senate Education Committee meets in Room 412 of the Knott building to hear a plan to require high school students to take a course on personal finances. The panel also hears proposals addressing college scholarships, charter school contracts, and children playing with imaginary guns. The Senate Education Committee is scheduled to take up a wide range of bills, including a proposal (SB 566), filed by Sen. Tom Lee, that would change community-service guidelines in the Bright Futures scholarship program. The changes would include allowing business internships and political campaigns to fulfill community service requirements.

The Senate Children, Families & Elder Affairs Committee meets in Room 37 of the Senate building to hear a bill revising the training and education requirements of ALF administrators by a third-party credentialing entity.

The House Economic Development &Tourism Committee meets in Room 12 of the House building to consider four bills, including HB 351, which provides for Neighborhood Improvement Districts to borrow money and HB 1129, creating a process for water control districts to be converted into community development districts.

The Senate Judiciary Committee meets in Room 110 of the Senate building to consider several bills, including the first committee hearing for SB 386 by Sen. Alan Hays. The bill would prohibit foreign laws that infringe on constitutional rights and allow people to file a waiver if they wish to abide by the laws of their country or religion. They will also consider a bill (SB 72), filed by Sen. Anitere Flores, that calls for starting legislative sessions in January during even-numbered years. Sessions now typically start in March.

The House Ethics & Elections Subcommittee meets in Room 212 of the Knott Building to hold a workshop to discuss online voter registration.

The House Health Innovation Subcommittee meets in Room 306 of the House Office Building to consider a bill (HB 745) that would place new restrictions on pharmacy audits. Groups such as the Florida Pharmacy Association and the pharmacy giant Walgreens are backing restrictions on the audits by pharmacy-benefit managers on behalf of managed-care plans.

11:30 a.m.:

The House Healthy Families Subcommittee meets in Room 12 of the House Building to consider a plan to reform child protective services. They will also take up a wide-ranging plan (PCB HFS 14-03) that seeks to protect children from abuse and neglect better. The House and Senate have spent months working on the issue after reports of numerous child deaths last year.

The House Government Operations Subcommittee meets in Room 212 Knott Building to consider a bill (HB 491) that would create a pilot program in Miami-Dade County for needle and syringe exchanges. The proposal, filed by Rep. Mark Pafford, aims to prevent the transmission of infectious diseases by allowing drug users to exchange used needles and syringes for clean needles and syringes.

The House Civil Justice Subcommittee meets in Room 404 House Office Building to consider five bills, including CS/HB 617 — Provides for removal of vehicle or vessel by cooperative association or homeowners’ association; authorizes owner or lessee of real property to have vehicle or vessel removed from property without certain signage.

12:30 p.m.:

The House K-12 Subcommittee meets in Morris Hall, Room 404 of the House Office Building

The House Agriculture & Natural Resources Appropriations Subcommittee meets in Reed Hall, Room 102 of the House Office Building to consider four bills, including CS/HB 791, which revises coastal construction and excavation permit requirements.

1:30 p.m.:

House Rulemaking Oversight & Repeal Subcommittee meets in Room 306 of the House Office Building.

2 p.m.:

The Senate Health Policy Committee meets in Room 412 of the Knott Building to consider SB 1352, a plan to expand the scope of practices for advanced nurse practitioners. In addition, they will take up SB 1276 on trauma center and expanding KidCare, the state’s insurance program for children.

The Senate Banking and Insurance Committee meets in Room 110 of the Senate building to consider several bills, including SB 482 which would reduce Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund coverage from $17 billion to $14 billion by 2017.

The Senate Community Affairs Committee meets in Room 301 of the Senate building to consider 12 bills, including SB 470, which would allow alcohol vendors to hold beer tastings.

The Senate Military and Veterans Affairs, Space and Domestic Security meets in Room 37 of the Senate building to consider four bills, including SB 296 which would allow people complying with mandatory evacuations to carry concealed weapons without a permit.

5:30 p.m.:

The Joint Legislative Budget Commission meets in Room 412 of the Knott Building to consider a request from the Department of Economic Opportunity to release $20.8 million for an economic-development effort dubbed “Project Magellan.” The money would come through what is known as the “Quick Action Closing Fund.”

6:15 p.m.:

The House Rules & Calendar Committee meets in Room 404 of the House Office Building.

Elsewhere in Florida:

The First District Court of Appeal will hear arguments 9 a.m. in a constitutional challenge to a 2011 law that linked teacher pay and evaluations to student performance. A Leon County circuit judge last year upheld the law, dubbed the “Student Success Act.” (Tuesday, , 1st District Court of Appeal, 2000 Drayton Dr., Tallahassee.)

Also at 9 a.m., Rep. Ricardo Rangel will host health-care “navigators” in his district office at 704 Mabbette St. in Kissimmee to try to help increase enrollment in coverage under the federal Affordable Care Act.

Advocates for deaf Floridians will hold a news conference at 11 a.m. in the Capitol courtyard to urge lawmakers to approve bills (SB 1304 and HB 1125) that would make changes such as requiring certification of sign-language interpreters.

Democratic attorney-general candidate George Sheldon will attend a fund-raising event in Tallahassee 4:30 p.m.at Clyde’s and Costello’s, 210 South Adams St.

Gov. Rick Scott will help serve what is being touted as the world’s largest key-lime pie during a Florida Keys event at 5 p.m. in the Capitol courtyard.

The Federal Energy R Tuesday’s legislative agenda runs the gamut of Florida issues— from the contentious (trauma centers, nurse practitioners) to the outright strange (the “pop tart” bill).

A Senate committee will take up the “pop part” bill, which removes punishments for schoolchildren who use partially eaten pastries as a play gun, and a change in community service requirements for Bright Future Scholarships by adding internships and work on political campaigns.

The Senate Health Policy Committee will also consider two hotly contested measures: one that expands the scope of advanced nurse practitioners and the other that modifies the rules for approving trauma centers.

House committees will consider new restrictions on pharmacy audits, reforming child protective services and a method to convert water control districts to “community development districts.” 

Also in the House is a measure creating a pilot program in Miami-Dade County for needle and syringe exchanges.

For the fourth year in a row, Sen. Alan Hays attempts to pass legislation banning the use of Sharia laws in the court system; the Senate Judiciary Committee will hear SB 386 – referred to as the “anti-Sharia” law—prohibiting foreign laws that infringe on constitutional rights. The bill will allow people to file a waiver if they want to abide by the laws of their country or religion.

egulatory Commission will hold a meeting in Gilchrist County 6 p.m. to gather information about a plan by Sabal Trail Transmission to build a 474-mile natural gas pipeline from Alabama to Central Florida. The event is at Bell High School, 930 South Main St. in Bell.

Ananth Prasad, Secretary of the Department of Transportation will speak at 6 p.m. in the Bob Graham Center of the University of Florida and discuss the current state of Florida’s infrastructure and what can be done going forward. More information can be found here.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission concludes a series of meetings in Gainesville to discuss conservation and management of black bears in central Florida. The final meeting will be from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday in Gainesville City Hall, 200 E. University Ave. More information can be found here.

Phil Ammann is a St. Petersburg-based journalist and blogger. With more than three decades of writing, editing and management experience, Phil produced material for both print and online, in addition to founding HRNewsDaily.com. His broad range includes covering news, local government and culture reviews for Patch.com, technical articles and profiles for BetterRVing Magazine and advice columns for a metaphysical website, among others. Phil has served as a contributor and production manager for SaintPetersBlog since 2013. He lives in St. Pete with his wife, visual artist Margaret Juul and can be reached at phil@floridapolitics.com and on Twitter @PhilAmmann.