Section 943.135, Florida Statutes 2003
943.135 Requirements for continued employment.--
(1) The commission shall, by rule, adopt a program that requires all officers, as a condition of continued employment or appointment as officers, to receive periodic commission-approved continuing training or education. Such continuing training or education shall be required at the rate of 40 hours every 4 years. No officer shall be denied a reasonable opportunity by the employing agency to comply with this section. The employing agency must document that the continuing training or education is job-related and consistent with the needs of the employing agency. The employing agency must maintain and submit, or electronically transmit, the documentation to the commission, in a format approved by the commission. The rule shall also provide:
(a) Assistance to an employing agency in identifying each affected officer, the date of his or her employment or appointment, and his or her most recent date for successful completion of continuing training or education; and
(b) A procedure for reactivation of the certification of an officer who is not in compliance with this section.
(2) Continuing training or education required under this section may not be used to qualify an officer for salary incentive payments provided under s. 943.22.
(3) For the purposes of this section, the employing agency is responsible for notifying the commission of any omission of any approved training not included in the records of the commission.
(4)(a) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, any person holding active certification from the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission as a law enforcement officer, correctional officer, or correctional probation officer, as defined in s. 943.10(1), (2), (3), (6), (7), (8), or (9), who resigns his or her position as law enforcement officer, correctional officer, or correctional probation officer for the sole purpose of serving in an office to which the person has been elected or appointed and to thereby avoid the prohibition against dual officeholding established in s. 5(a), Art. II of the State Constitution may be allowed to retain active certification in a special status during the tenure of the elected or appointed office if, at the time of resignation, the person:
1. Was employed by or associated with an employing agency in a manner authorized by this chapter;
2. Was not subject to an internal investigation or employment action to discipline or dismiss by the employing agency;
3. Was not subject to criminal investigation or prosecution by any state or federal authority; and
4. Was not subject to an investigation or action against his or her certification by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission,
and that subsequent to the resignation the person otherwise complies with this subsection.
(b) Any person who qualifies under paragraph (a) may, for purposes of meeting the minimum mandatory continuing training or education requirements of this section, at the option of an employing agency, associate with that agency for the sole purpose of securing continuing training or education as required by this section and for allowing the agency to report completion of the education or training to the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission. The employing agency with which the person has associated shall submit proof of completion of any education or training so obtained for purposes of demonstrating compliance with this section and shall indicate that the person for whom the credits are reported has secured the training under the special status authorized by this section. 1An employing agency may require any person so associated to attend continuing training or education at the person's own expense and may determine the courses or training that a person is to attend while associated with the agency. Any person who is permitted to associate with an employing agency for purposes of obtaining and reporting education or continuing training credits while serving in an elected or appointed public office shall not be considered to be employed by the employing agency or considered by the association with the employing agency to maintain an office under s. 5(a), Art. II of the State Constitution.
(c) The period of time a person serves in an elected or appointed office and thereby maintains the special certification status authorized by this section may not be considered in calculating whether the person is considered to have incurred a break in service for purposes of maintaining active certification by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission.
(d) An employing agency that receives a resignation from a person for the purpose of avoiding the dual officeholding prohibition as discussed in this subsection shall verify that the person who has resigned is in fact serving in an elected or public office and report the verification, including an indication of the office in which the person is serving to the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission via the affidavit of separation of employment used by the commission.
(e) Any person seeking the benefit of this subsection shall, upon request, provide to the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission any documentation or proof required by the commission to evaluate the person's eligibility under this subsection, to evaluate a submission of continuing training or education credits as authorized by this subsection, or to determine the duration of any tenure in an elected or appointed public office, including any extension of the status by reason of reelection or reappointment or by election or appointment to a different office.
History.--s. 9, ch. 84-258; s. 73, ch. 85-62; s. 44, ch. 86-183; s. 2, ch. 86-286; ss. 5, 6, ch. 87-186; s. 5, ch. 91-429; s. 10, ch. 93-252; s. 1632, ch. 97-102; s. 3, ch. 98-249; s. 11, ch. 98-251; s. 4, ch. 2002-205.
1Note.--This sentence as amended by s. 11, ch. 98-251; similar material was enacted in two sentences by s. 3, ch. 98-249. The s. 3, ch. 98-249, version reads: "A person permitted to associate with such agency for the purpose of continuing training or education may be required to attend such training at his or her own expense. The agency shall provide guidance to such persons as to what training is necessary for the associated person to meet the standards set by the Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission."