January 22, 2021
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       Florida Senate - 2010                                    SJR 440
       By Senator Gelber
       35-00236C-10                                           2010440__
    1                       Senate Joint Resolution                     
    2         A joint resolution proposing amendments to Section 24
    3         of Article I and Sections 4, 7, and 19 of Article III
    4         of the State Constitution to make the legislative
    5         process more open to the public.
    7  Be It Resolved by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
    9         That the following amendments to Section 24 of Article I
   10  and Sections 4, 7, and 19 of Article III of the State
   11  Constitution are agreed to and shall be submitted to the
   12  electors of this state for approval or rejection at the next
   13  general election or at an earlier special election specifically
   14  authorized by law for that purpose:
   15                              ARTICLE I                            
   16                        DECLARATION OF RIGHTS                      
   17         SECTION 24. Access to public records and meetings.—
   18         (a) Every person has the right to inspect or copy any
   19  public record made or received in connection with the official
   20  business of any public body, officer, or employee of the state,
   21  or persons acting on their behalf, except with respect to
   22  records exempted pursuant to this section or specifically made
   23  confidential by this Constitution. This section specifically
   24  includes the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of
   25  government and each agency or department created thereunder;
   26  counties, municipalities, and districts; and each constitutional
   27  officer, board, and commission, or entity created pursuant to
   28  law or this Constitution.
   29         (b) All meetings of any collegial public body of the
   30  executive branch of state government or of any collegial public
   31  body of a county, municipality, school district, or special
   32  district, at which official acts are to be taken or at which
   33  public business of such body is to be transacted or discussed,
   34  shall be open and noticed to the public and meetings of the
   35  legislature shall be open and noticed as provided in Article
   36  III, Section 4(e), except with respect to meetings exempted
   37  pursuant to this section or specifically closed by this
   38  Constitution.
   39         (c) This section shall be self-executing. The legislature,
   40  however, may provide by general law passed by a two-thirds vote
   41  of the membership of each house for the exemption of records
   42  from the requirements of subsection (a) and the exemption of
   43  meetings from the requirements of subsection (b), provided that
   44  such law shall state with specificity the public necessity
   45  justifying the exemption and shall be no broader than necessary
   46  to accomplish the stated purpose of the law. The legislature
   47  shall enact laws governing the enforcement of this section,
   48  including the maintenance, control, destruction, disposal, and
   49  disposition of records made public by this section, except that
   50  each house of the legislature may adopt reasonable rules
   51  governing the enforcement of this section in relation to records
   52  of the legislative branch. Challenges to the reasonableness or
   53  interpretation of a rule may be appealed to the circuit court.
   54  Laws enacted pursuant to this subsection shall contain only
   55  exemptions from the requirements of subsections (a) or (b) and
   56  provisions governing the enforcement of this section, and shall
   57  relate to one subject.
   58         (d) All laws that are in effect on July 1, 1993 that limit
   59  public access to records or meetings shall remain in force, and
   60  such laws apply to records of the legislative and judicial
   61  branches, until they are repealed. Rules of court that are in
   62  effect on the date of adoption of this section that limit access
   63  to records shall remain in effect until they are repealed.
   64                             ARTICLE III                           
   65                             LEGISLATURE                           
   66         SECTION 4. Quorum and procedure.—
   67         (a) A majority of the membership of each house shall
   68  constitute a quorum, but a smaller number may adjourn from day
   69  to day and compel the presence of absent members in such manner
   70  and under such penalties as it may prescribe. Each house shall
   71  determine its rules of procedure.
   72         (b) Sessions of each house shall be public; except sessions
   73  of the senate when considering appointment to or removal from
   74  public office may be closed.
   75         (c) Each house shall keep and publish a journal of its
   76  proceedings; and upon the request of five members present, the
   77  vote of each member voting on any question shall be entered on
   78  the journal. In any legislative committee or subcommittee, the
   79  vote of each member voting on the final passage of any
   80  legislation pending before the committee, and upon the request
   81  of any two members of the committee or subcommittee, the vote of
   82  each member on any other question, shall be recorded.
   83         (d) Each house may punish a member for contempt or
   84  disorderly conduct and, by a two-thirds vote of its membership,
   85  may expel a member.
   86         (e) The rules of procedure of each house shall provide that
   87  all legislative committee and subcommittee meetings of each
   88  house, and joint conference committee meetings, shall be open
   89  and noticed to the public. A member of a conference committee
   90  may not discuss issues before the conference committee with
   91  another member of such committee except at a meeting that is
   92  open and noticed to the public. The rules of procedure of each
   93  house shall further provide that all other prearranged
   94  gatherings, between more than two members of the legislature, or
   95  between the governor, the president of the senate, or the
   96  speaker of the house of representatives, the purpose of which is
   97  to agree upon formal legislative action that will be taken at a
   98  subsequent time, or at which formal legislative action is taken,
   99  regarding pending legislation or amendments, shall be reasonably
  100  open to the public. All open meetings shall be subject to order
  101  and decorum. This section shall be implemented and defined by
  102  the rules of each house, and such rules shall control admission
  103  to the floor of each legislative chamber and may, where
  104  reasonably necessary for security purposes or to protect a
  105  witness appearing before a committee, provide for the closure of
  106  committee meetings. Each house shall be the sole judge for the
  107  reasonable interpretation, implementation, and enforcement of
  108  this section. Challenges to the reasonableness or interpretation
  109  of a rule may be appealed to the circuit court.
  110         SECTION 7. Passage of bills.—
  111         (a) Any bill may originate in either house and after
  112  passage in one may be amended in the other. It shall be read in
  113  each house on three separate days, unless this rule is waived by
  114  two-thirds vote; provided the publication of its title in the
  115  journal of a house shall satisfy the requirement for the first
  116  reading in that house. On each reading, it shall be read by
  117  title only, unless one-third of the members present desire it
  118  read in full. On final passage, the vote of each member voting
  119  shall be entered on the journal. Passage of a bill shall require
  120  a majority vote in each house. Each bill and joint resolution
  121  passed in both houses shall be signed by the presiding officers
  122  of the respective houses and by the secretary of the senate and
  123  the clerk of the house of representatives during the session or
  124  as soon as practicable after its adjournment sine die.
  125         (b)During a special session and the last 5 days of a
  126  regular session, an amendment, except a technical amendment, may
  127  not be introduced unless the amendment was adopted by a
  128  committee or authorized for introduction by a three-fourths vote
  129  of the membership of the house in which the amendment is
  130  offered.
  131         SECTION 19. State Budgeting, Planning and Appropriations
  132  Processes.—
  133         (a) ANNUAL BUDGETING.
  134         (1) General law shall prescribe the adoption of annual
  135  state budgetary and planning processes and require that detail
  136  reflecting the annualized costs of the state budget and
  137  reflecting the nonrecurring costs of the budget requests shall
  138  accompany state department and agency legislative budget
  139  requests, the governor’s recommended budget, and appropriation
  140  bills.
  141         (2) Unless approved by a three-fifths vote of the
  142  membership of each house, appropriations made for recurring
  143  purposes from nonrecurring general revenue funds for any fiscal
  144  year shall not exceed three percent of the total general revenue
  145  funds estimated to be available at the time such appropriation
  146  is made.
  147         (3) As prescribed by general law, each state department and
  148  agency shall be required to submit a legislative budget request
  149  that is based upon and that reflects the long-range financial
  150  outlook adopted by the joint legislative budget commission or
  151  that specifically explains any variance from the long-range
  152  financial outlook contained in the request.
  153         (4) For purposes of this section, the terms department and
  154  agency shall include the judicial branch.
  155         (b)APPROPRIATIONS BILLS FORMAT.The general appropriations
  156  bill shall provide to the reader sufficient information for the
  157  average reader to be able to determine: the source of funds; the
  158  use of the funds appropriated, with enough detail to know what
  159  purpose the funds are intended to achieve; and where to find any
  160  underlying references needed to provide sufficient detail. An
  161  appropriations bill must also contain references to any
  162  performance measures or requirements that relate to the use of
  163  such funds.
  164         (b)APPROPRIATION BILLS FORMAT.Separate sections within
  165  the general appropriation bill shall be used for each major
  166  program area of the state budget; major program areas shall
  167  include: education enhancement “lottery” trust fund items;
  168  education (all other funds); human services; criminal justice
  169  and corrections; natural resources, environment, growth
  170  management, and transportation; general government; and judicial
  171  branch. Each major program area shall include an itemization of
  172  expenditures for: state operations; state capital outlay; aid to
  173  local governments and nonprofit organizations operations; aid to
  174  local governments and nonprofit organizations capital outlay;
  175  federal funds and the associated state matching funds; spending
  176  authorizations for operations; and spending authorizations for
  177  capital outlay. Additionally, appropriation bills passed by the
  178  legislature shall include an itemization of specific
  179  appropriations that exceed one million dollars ($1,000,000.00)
  180  in 1992 dollars. For purposes of this subsection, “specific
  181  appropriation,” “itemization,” and “major program area” shall be
  182  defined by law. This itemization threshold shall be adjusted by
  183  general law every four years to reflect the rate of inflation or
  184  deflation as indicated in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban
  185  Consumers, U.S. City Average, All Items, or successor reports as
  186  reported by the United States Department of Labor, Bureau of
  187  Labor Statistics or its successor. Substantive bills containing
  188  appropriations shall also be subject to the itemization
  189  requirement mandated under this provision and shall be subject
  190  to the governor’s specific appropriation veto power described in
  191  Article III, Section 8.
  193         (1) No later than September 15 of each year, the joint
  194  legislative budget commission shall issue a long-range financial
  195  outlook setting out recommended fiscal strategies for the state
  196  and its departments and agencies in order to assist the
  197  legislature in making budget decisions. The long-range financial
  198  outlook must include major workload and revenue estimates. In
  199  order to implement this paragraph, the joint legislative budget
  200  commission shall use current official consensus estimates and
  201  may request the development of additional official estimates.
  202         (2) The joint legislative budget commission shall seek
  203  input from the public and from the executive and judicial
  204  branches when developing and recommending the long-range
  205  financial outlook.
  206         (3) The legislature shall prescribe by general law
  207  conditions under which limited adjustments to the budget, as
  208  recommended by the governor or the chief justice of the supreme
  209  court, may be approved without the concurrence of the full
  210  legislature.
  211         (4)A general appropriations bill that is enacted by the
  212  legislature must be the product of a joint conference committee,
  213  except as otherwise provided in this section.
  214         (d) SEVENTY-TWO HOUR PUBLIC REVIEW PERIOD. All general
  215  appropriation bills shall be furnished to each member of the
  216  legislature, each member of the cabinet, the governor, and the
  217  chief justice of the supreme court at least seventy-two hours
  218  before final passage by either house of the legislature of the
  219  bill in the form that will be presented to the governor.
  220         (e) FINAL BUDGET REPORT. A final budget report shall be
  221  prepared as prescribed by general law. The final budget report
  222  shall be produced no later than the 120th day after the
  223  beginning of the fiscal year, and copies of the report shall be
  224  furnished to each member of the legislature, the head of each
  225  department and agency of the state, the auditor general, and the
  226  chief justice of the supreme court.
  227         (f) TRUST FUNDS.
  228         (1) No trust fund of the State of Florida or other public
  229  body may be created or re-created by law without a three-fifths
  230  vote of the membership of each house of the legislature in a
  231  separate bill for that purpose only.
  232         (2) State trust funds shall terminate not more than four
  233  years after the effective date of the act authorizing the
  234  initial creation of the trust fund. By law the legislature may
  235  set a shorter time period for which any trust fund is
  236  authorized.
  237         (3) Trust funds required by federal programs or mandates;
  238  trust funds established for bond covenants, indentures, or
  239  resolutions, whose revenues are legally pledged by the state or
  240  public body to meet debt service or other financial requirements
  241  of any debt obligations of the state or any public body; the
  242  state transportation trust fund; the trust fund containing the
  243  net annual proceeds from the Florida Education Lotteries; the
  244  Florida retirement trust fund; trust funds for institutions
  245  under the management of the Board of Governors, where such trust
  246  funds are for auxiliary enterprises and contracts, grants, and
  247  donations, as those terms are defined by general law; trust
  248  funds that serve as clearing funds or accounts for the chief
  249  financial officer or state agencies; trust funds that account
  250  for assets held by the state in a trustee capacity as an agent
  251  or fiduciary for individuals, private organizations, or other
  252  governmental units; and other trust funds authorized by this
  253  Constitution, are not subject to the requirements set forth in
  254  paragraph (2) of this subsection.
  255         (4) All cash balances and income of any trust funds
  256  abolished under this subsection shall be deposited into the
  257  general revenue fund.
  258         (g) BUDGET STABILIZATION FUND. Subject to the provisions of
  259  this subsection, an amount equal to at least 5% of the last
  260  completed fiscal year’s net revenue collections for the general
  261  revenue fund shall be retained in the budget stabilization fund.
  262  The budget stabilization fund’s principal balance shall not
  263  exceed an amount equal to 10% of the last completed fiscal
  264  year’s net revenue collections for the general revenue fund. The
  265  legislature shall provide criteria for withdrawing funds from
  266  the budget stabilization fund in a separate bill for that
  267  purpose only and only for the purpose of covering revenue
  268  shortfalls of the general revenue fund or for the purpose of
  269  providing funding for an emergency, as defined by general law.
  270  General law shall provide for the restoration of this fund. The
  271  budget stabilization fund shall be comprised of funds not
  272  otherwise obligated or committed for any purpose.
  274  AGENCY PLANNING DOCUMENT PROCESSES. General law shall provide
  275  for a long-range state planning document. The governor shall
  276  recommend to the legislature biennially any revisions to the
  277  long-range state planning document, as defined by law. General
  278  law shall require a biennial review and revision of the long
  279  range state planning document and shall require all departments
  280  and agencies of state government to develop planning documents
  281  that identify statewide strategic goals and objectives,
  282  consistent with the long-range state planning document. The
  283  long-range state planning document and department and agency
  284  planning documents shall remain subject to review and revision
  285  by the legislature. The long-range state planning document must
  286  include projections of future needs and resources of the state
  287  which are consistent with the long-range financial outlook. The
  288  department and agency planning documents shall include a
  289  prioritized listing of planned expenditures for review and
  290  possible reduction in the event of revenue shortfalls, as
  291  defined by general law.
  292         (i) GOVERNMENT EFFICIENCY TASK FORCE. No later than January
  293  of 2007, and each fourth year thereafter, the president of the
  294  senate, the speaker of the house of representatives, and the
  295  governor shall appoint a government efficiency task force, the
  296  membership of which shall be established by general law. The
  297  task force shall be composed of members of the legislature and
  298  representatives from the private and public sectors who shall
  299  develop recommendations for improving governmental operations
  300  and reducing costs. Staff to assist the task force in performing
  301  its duties shall be assigned by general law, and the task force
  302  may obtain assistance from the private sector. The task force
  303  shall complete its work within one year and shall submit its
  304  recommendations to the joint legislative budget commission, the
  305  governor, and the chief justice of the supreme court.
  306         (j) JOINT LEGISLATIVE BUDGET COMMISSION. There is created
  307  within the legislature the joint legislative budget commission
  308  composed of equal numbers of senate members appointed by the
  309  president of the senate and house members appointed by the
  310  speaker of the house of representatives. Each member shall serve
  311  at the pleasure of the officer who appointed the member. A
  312  vacancy on the commission shall be filled in the same manner as
  313  the original appointment. From November of each odd-numbered
  314  year through October of each even-numbered year, the chairperson
  315  of the joint legislative budget commission shall be appointed by
  316  the president of the senate and the vice chairperson of the
  317  commission shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of
  318  representatives. From November of each even-numbered year
  319  through October of each odd-numbered year, the chairperson of
  320  the joint legislative budget commission shall be appointed by
  321  the speaker of the house of representatives and the vice
  322  chairperson of the commission shall be appointed by the
  323  president of the senate. The joint legislative budget commission
  324  shall be governed by the joint rules of the senate and the house
  325  of representatives, which shall remain in effect until repealed
  326  or amended by concurrent resolution. The commission shall
  327  convene at least quarterly and shall convene at the call of the
  328  president of the senate and the speaker of the house of
  329  representatives. A majority of the commission members of each
  330  house plus one additional member from either house constitutes a
  331  quorum. Action by the commission requires a majority vote of the
  332  commission members present of each house. The commission may
  333  conduct its meetings through teleconferences or similar means.
  334  In addition to the powers and duties specified in this
  335  subsection, the joint legislative budget commission shall
  336  exercise all other powers and perform any other duties not in
  337  conflict with paragraph (c)(3) and as prescribed by general law
  338  or joint rule.
  339         BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the following statement be
  340  placed on the ballot:
  341                      CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT                     
  342                        ARTICLE I, SECTION 24                      
  343                 ARTICLE III, SECTIONS 4, 7, and 19                
  345  DOLLARS.—The State Constitution generally authorizes the public
  346  to inspect public records. The State Constitution also generally
  347  requires meetings of governmental bodies, including meetings of
  348  state legislative bodies, to be noticed and open to the public.
  349  The State Constitution authorizes the Legislature to adopt rules
  350  relating to public access to legislative documents and meetings.
  351  However, this amendment authorizes a person to challenge the
  352  reasonableness or interpretation of those rules in circuit
  353  court.
  354         The amendment also:
  355         (1) Provides that members of a legislative conference
  356  committee may discuss matters before the conference committee
  357  with other members of the committee only at a meeting that is
  358  noticed and open to the public.
  359         (2) Prohibits the Legislature from considering amendments
  360  to bills, except technical amendments, during special sessions
  361  and the last five days of regular sessions, unless the
  362  amendments were adopted by a committee or authorized for
  363  introduction by a three-fourths vote of the membership of the
  364  house in which the amendments are offered.
  365         (3) Replaces existing requirements for the format of
  366  appropriations bills with requirements to make appropriations
  367  bills more user friendly. Specifically, appropriations bills
  368  must clearly identify the purposes for the use of appropriated
  369  funds and contain references to detailed information and
  370  performance measures relating to the appropriation.
  371         (4) Requires general appropriations acts to be the product
  372  of a joint conference committee.
  373         (5) Clarifies that a two-thirds vote of the membership of
  374  each house is required to enact a new public-records exemption
  375  or public-meeting exemption.

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