January 27, 2020
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       Florida Senate - 2010                              (NP)    SB 28
       By Senator Lawson
       6-00119-10                                              201028__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act for the relief of Eddie Weekley and Charlotte
    3         Williams, individually and as co-personal
    4         representatives of the Estate of Franklin Weekley,
    5         their deceased son, for the disappearance and death of
    6         their son while he was in the care of the Marianna
    7         Sunland Center, currently operated by the Agency for
    8         Persons with Disabilities; providing an appropriation
    9         to compensate them for injuries and damages sustained
   10         as result of the negligence of the Department of
   11         Children and Family Services; providing a limitation
   12         on the payment of fees and costs; providing an
   13         effective date.
   15         WHEREAS, in November of 2001, Franklin Weekley was
   16  diagnosed with mental retardation and a seizure disorder and
   17  admitted to the Marianna Sunland Center, which at the time was
   18  operated by the Department of Children and Family Services, and
   19         WHEREAS, on December 6, 2002, Franklin disappeared from the
   20  center and, following a search of the premises by employees of
   21  the center, was deemed by the center to have run away and the
   22  case was closed, and
   23         WHEREAS, on October 28, 2004, a demolition crew found the
   24  skeletal remains of Franklin in the basement of a building
   25  adjacent to the premises of the Marianna Sunland Center where
   26  Franklin had resided, and
   27         WHEREAS, legal action was filed on behalf of Franklin’s
   28  parents against the Department of Children and Family Services
   29  and its employees or agents raising negligence, tort, statutory,
   30  and civil rights claims concerning the disappearance and death
   31  of their son Franklin Weekley, and
   32         WHEREAS, the parties and the Agency for Persons with
   33  Disabilities, which currently operates the Marianna Sunland
   34  Center, mediated and reached a settlement of all claims, and
   35         WHEREAS, the plaintiffs and the Agency for Persons with
   36  Disabilities entered into a Compromise and Settlement Agreement
   37  by which all agreed to a claim bill under which the Agency for
   38  Persons with Disabilities will pay $1 million in addition to the
   39  $300,000 paid by the agency to settle claims relating to this
   40  matter, NOW, THEREFORE,
   42  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   44         Section 1. The facts stated in the preamble to this act are
   45  found and declared to be true.
   46         Section 2. The sum of $1 million is appropriated from the
   47  General Revenue Fund to the Agency for Persons with
   48  Disabilities, as successor to the Department of Children and
   49  Family Services, to be paid for the relief of Eddie Weekley and
   50  Charlotte Williams, individually and as co-personal
   51  representatives of the Estate of Franklin Weekley, deceased.
   52         Section 3. The Chief Financial Officer is directed to draw
   53  a warrant in favor of Eddie Weekley and Charlotte Williams,
   54  individually and as co-personal representatives of the Estate of
   55  Franklin Weekley, deceased, in the sum of $1 million upon funds
   56  of the Agency for Persons with Disabilities in the State
   57  Treasury, and to pay the same out of such funds in the State
   58  Treasury.
   59         Section 4. The amount paid by the Agency for Persons with
   60  Disabilities pursuant to s. 768.28, Florida Statutes, and the
   61  amount awarded under this act are intended to provide the sole
   62  compensation for all present and future claims arising out of
   63  the factual situation described in this act resulting in the
   64  disappearance and death of Franklin Weekley. The total amount
   65  paid for attorney’s fees, lobbying fees, costs, and other
   66  similar expenses relating to this claim may not exceed 25
   67  percent of the amount awarded under this act.
   68         Section 5. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.

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