23.1231 Florida Mutual Aid Plan; powers and duties.
23.127 Powers, privileges, and immunities.
23.12 Short title.—This part may be cited as the “Florida Mutual Aid Act.”
History.—s. 1, ch. 69-112; s. 1, ch. 92-165.
23.121 Policy and purpose.—
(1) Because of the existing and continuing possibility of the occurrence of natural or manmade disasters or emergencies and other major law enforcement problems, including those that cross jurisdictional lines, and in order to ensure that preparations of this state will be adequate to deal with such activity, protect the public peace and safety, and preserve the lives and property of the people of the state, it is found and declared to be necessary:
(a) To create a state law enforcement mutual aid plan which provides for the command and coordination of law enforcement planning, operations, and mutual aid;
(b) To provide for the coordination of the dispatch and use of state law enforcement and Florida National Guard personnel and equipment because of natural or manmade disasters or emergencies whenever a local law enforcement agency requires law enforcement assistance from the state or any other jurisdiction;
(c) To provide for a system for the receipt and dissemination of information, data, and directives pertaining to activities among law enforcement agencies;
(d) To prescribe a procedure for the inventory of all law enforcement personnel, facilities, and equipment in the state;
(e) To collect and disseminate information and intelligence relating to disasters or emergencies, either existing or pending;
(f) To preplan distribution and allocation of state resources in support of the overall law enforcement mission; and
(g) To allow a law enforcement agency to enter into a mutual aid agreement with another law enforcement agency of this state or any other state or with any law enforcement agency of the United States or its territories.
(2) It is further declared to be the purpose of this part to authorize the establishment of such organization and the development and employment of such measures as are necessary and appropriate to carry out the provisions of this part.
History.—s. 2, ch. 69-112; s. 1, ch. 81-142; s. 2, ch. 92-165; s. 1, ch. 93-211.
23.1225 Mutual aid agreements.—
(1) The term “mutual aid agreement,” as used in this part, refers to one of the following types of agreement:
(a) A voluntary cooperation written agreement between two or more law enforcement agencies, which agreement permits voluntary cooperation and assistance of a routine law enforcement nature across jurisdictional lines. The agreement must specify the nature of the law enforcement assistance to be rendered, the agency or entity that shall bear any liability arising from acts undertaken under the agreement, the procedures for requesting and for authorizing assistance, the agency or entity that has command and supervisory responsibility, a time limit for the agreement, the amount of any compensation or reimbursement to the assisting agency or entity, and any other terms and conditions necessary to give it effect. Examples of law enforcement activities that may be addressed in a voluntary cooperation written agreement include, but are not limited to, establishing a joint city-county task force on narcotics smuggling, authorizing school safety officers to enforce laws in an area within 1,000 feet of a school or school board property, authorizing state university police officers to enforce laws within a specified jurisdictional area as agreed upon in the voluntary cooperation written agreement, or establishing a joint city-county traffic enforcement task force.
(b) A requested operational assistance written agreement between two or more law enforcement agencies, which agreement is for the rendering of assistance in a law enforcement emergency. The agreement must specify the nature of the law enforcement assistance to be rendered, the agency or entity that shall bear any liability arising from acts undertaken under the agreement, the procedures for requesting and for authorizing assistance, the agency or entity that has command and supervisory responsibility, a time limit for the agreement, the amount of any compensation or reimbursement to the assisting agency or entity, and any other terms and conditions necessary to give it effect. An example of the use of a requested operational assistance written agreement is to meet a request for assistance due to a civil disturbance or other emergency as defined in s. 252.34.
(c) A combination of the agreements described in paragraphs (a) and (b).
(d) As used in this section, the term “law enforcement agency” means any agency or unit of government that has authority to employ or appoint law enforcement officers, as defined in s. 943.10(1).
(2) A mutual aid agreement may allow for discretion by the parties as to when, whether, and to what extent assistance will be available.
(3) A mutual aid agreement may be entered into by a law enforcement agency through a written agreement executed by the chief executive officer of the agency, who is authorized to contractually bind the agency.
(4) A copy of a mutual aid agreement must be filed with the Department of Law Enforcement within 14 days after it is signed.
(5) In the event of a disaster or emergency such that a state of emergency is declared by the Governor pursuant to chapter 252, the requirement that a requested operational assistance agreement be a written agreement for rendering of assistance in a law enforcement emergency may be waived by the participating agencies for a period of up to 90 days from the declaration of the disaster.
(a) When a law enforcement agency lends assistance pursuant to this subsection, all powers, privileges, and immunities listed in s. 23.127, except with regard to interstate mutual aid agreements, apply to the agency or entity, if the law enforcement employees rendering services are being requested and coordinated by the affected local law enforcement executive in charge of law enforcement operations.
(b) A listing of such agencies or entities and the officers and employees of such agencies or entities rendering assistance pursuant to this subsection must be maintained by the agency or entity requesting such assistance and filed at the end of the 90-day period with the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.
History.—s. 2, ch. 81-142; s. 7, ch. 83-217; s. 1, ch. 83-334; s. 1, ch. 87-380; s. 3, ch. 92-165; s. 2, ch. 93-211; s. 1, ch. 96-276; s. 1, ch. 98-183; s. 3, ch. 2000-369; s. 882, ch. 2002-387; s. 1, ch. 2003-153; s. 1, ch. 2009-216.
23.1231 Florida Mutual Aid Plan; powers and duties.—
(1) The Florida Mutual Aid Plan must prepare for the distribution and allocation of state resources, including the Florida National Guard, in support of the overall law enforcement mission. The plan shall be administered by the Department of Law Enforcement to implement the policy and purposes set forth in s. 23.121.
(2) The executive director of the Department of Law Enforcement acting under the Governor as the state’s chief law enforcement officer is the director of the Florida Mutual Aid Plan. The director of the Florida Mutual Aid Plan shall:
(a) Coordinate, integrate, and implement law enforcement planning and activities for the use of mutual aid and state resources;
(b) Coordinate the organization and direction of the law enforcement services of the Florida Mutual Aid Plan;
(c) Coordinate and implement the gathering and collection of information and intelligence relating to law enforcement mutual aid or assistance from state agencies to support local law enforcement agencies in any local disaster or emergency, and provide information to state and local law enforcement agencies;
(d) During a state of emergency declared by the Governor under chapter 252, command, control, and coordinate all state law enforcement personnel and equipment to support local law enforcement agencies;
(e) Act as the liaison with the Division of the Florida Highway Patrol of the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in order to coordinate and integrate plans for traffic control and the participation of the department in the law enforcement operation;
(f) Serve as liaison and guide the flow of requests from local law enforcement for requesting law enforcement services from the Florida National Guard;
(g) Serve as liaison to the Governor, federal and state departments and agencies, and local law enforcement officials in order to achieve close coordination and cooperation in planning and operations in trouble areas;
(h) Guide the flow of law enforcement information from federal and state organizations to local law enforcement officials;
(i) Serve as liaison to the Attorney General in order to keep him or her informed of changes in law enforcement plans and regulations, mutual aid agreements, and current developments in all situations from a legal standpoint; and
(j) Do other things necessary for the implementation of this part.
(3) The department may:
(a) Maintain an inventory of all state and local law enforcement resources and the resources of the Florida National Guard, as directed by the director of the Florida Mutual Aid Plan;
(b) Provide technical assistance to state and local agencies in making inventories of their resources, planning, and preparing mutual aid agreements;
(c) Draft rules for mutual aid agreements;
(d) Conduct surveys as necessary to carry out the purposes of this part; and
(e) Do other things necessary for the implementation of this act.
History.—s. 3, ch. 81-142; s. 2, ch. 87-380; s. 5, ch. 92-165; s. 3, ch. 93-211; s. 87, ch. 95-147.
23.127 Powers, privileges, and immunities.—
(1) Any employee of any Florida law enforcement agency who renders aid outside the employee’s jurisdiction but inside this state pursuant to the written agreement entered under this part has the same powers, duties, rights, privileges, and immunities as if the employee was performing duties inside the employee’s jurisdiction. Any employee rendering aid pursuant to an interstate mutual aid agreement entered under this part shall have such powers, duties, rights, privileges, and immunities as the parties agree are consistent with the laws of the jurisdictions involved and with the purposes for which such agreement was entered.
(2) A political subdivision that furnishes equipment pursuant to this part must bear the cost of loss or damage to that equipment and must pay any expense incurred in the operation and maintenance of that equipment unless otherwise provided in the written agreement entered under this part. The political subdivision furnishing aid pursuant to this part shall compensate its employees during the time of the rendering of aid and shall defray the actual travel and maintenance expenses of its employees while they are rendering aid, including any amounts paid or due for compensation for personal injury or death while its employees are rendering aid, unless otherwise provided in the agreement entered under this part.
(3) The privileges and immunities from liability, exemption from laws, ordinances, and rules, and pension, insurance, relief, disability, workers’ compensation, salary, death, and other benefits that apply to the activity of an employee of an agency when performing the employee’s duties within the territorial limits of the employee’s agency apply to the employee to the same degree, manner, and extent while engaged in the performance of the employee’s duties extraterritorially under the provisions of the mutual aid agreement. This section applies to paid, volunteer, and auxiliary employees.
(4) A mutual aid agreement between law enforcement agencies in this state and any law enforcement agencies of another state or of the United States or its territories has the status of an interstate compact, but in any case or controversy involving performance or interpretation thereof or liability thereunder, the law enforcement agencies party thereto are real parties in interest and the state may maintain an action to recoup or otherwise make itself whole for any damages or liability that it incurs by reason of being joined as a party therein. Such action is maintainable against any public agency or agencies whose acts or omissions caused or contributed to the incurring of damages or liability by the state.
History.—s. 8, ch. 69-112; s. 48, ch. 79-40; s. 4, ch. 81-142; s. 4, ch. 92-165; s. 4, ch. 93-211.
23.20 Legislative intent with respect to paperwork reduction.
23.22 Paperwork reduction; activities of departments.
23.20 Legislative intent with respect to paperwork reduction.—The Legislature finds that:
(1) The paperwork burden associated with collecting information from individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments may have a significant economic impact on these entities as they attempt to comply with the state’s information reporting requirements.
(2) These information-reporting requirements are found in most interactions between state government and these entities, such as application and permitting processes, title registration, various licensure processes, environmental monitoring, growth management, and tax collection.
(3) The failure of state agencies to identify information they are collecting and to share that information with other agencies, as well as with local governments, has increased the paperwork burden on other entities.
(4) The state must minimize the paperwork burden by evaluating its need for information, determining whether it already has access to the necessary information, and coordinating data collection initiatives at their source.
(5) The collection of information by state government must be done in a manner that balances the efficiency and cost-effectiveness of government with the cost and convenience to individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments providing the information.
History.—s. 3, ch. 96-390.
23.21 Definitions.—For purposes of this part:
(1) “Department” means a principal administrative unit within the executive branch of state government, as defined in chapter 20, and includes the State Board of Administration, the Executive Office of the Governor, the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Parole Commission, the Agency for Health Care Administration, the State Board of Education, the Board of Governors of the State University System, the Justice Administrative Commission, the capital collateral regional counsel, and separate budget entities placed for administrative purposes within a department.
(2) “Paperwork burden” means the resources expended by the entity providing information. Resources may include the time, effort, or financial expenditure associated with reviewing the instructions; acquiring, installing, and using technology to obtain, compile, or report the information; searching data sources; completing and reviewing the collected information; or transmitting the required information to the requesting department.
(3) “Collect information” means the obtaining, causing to be obtained, soliciting, or requiring the disclosure to third parties of facts or opinions by or for a department, regardless of form or format, calling for answers to identical questions posed to, or identical reporting or recordkeeping requirements imposed on, 10 or more persons, other than departments or employees of this state.
History.—s. 3, ch. 96-390; s. 63, ch. 99-245; s. 3, ch. 2006-1; s. 4, ch. 2007-217.
23.22 Paperwork reduction; activities of departments.—
(1) In order to reduce the amount of paperwork associated with the collection of information from individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments and to provide more efficient and effective assistance to such individuals and organizations in completing necessary paperwork required by the government, each department head shall, to the extent feasible:
(a) Integrate information systems between programs and departments to reduce the paperwork burden on such individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments.
(b) Implement a department-wide paperwork review process designed to achieve the following outcomes:
1. Streamline information-collection processes that balance the cost and efficiency desired by the department with the cost and convenience to the reporting entities.
2. Ensure the reporting entities’ participation in the identification of data elements, the estimation of the paperwork burden on them, and the design of information-collection instruments and processes.
3. Collect information necessary for the performance of agency functions without duplicating other information accessible to the agency.
(c) Coordinate information gathering through such techniques as one-stop permitting, licensing, and public services.
(d) Design information collection forms and similar instruments to make them easy to understand and “user-friendly” to the individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments that are required to complete and return them. Departmental telephone numbers or electronic mail addresses for the public to obtain assistance in completing the forms must be provided on each form.
(e) Evaluate existing and prospective statutes and rules for the paperwork burden they generate and seek modification of the statutes and rules to reduce the paperwork burden being placed on individuals, private sector organizations, and local government.
(f) Collaborate with the Division of Library and Information Services, pursuant to s. 119.021(2), to identify and index records retention requirements placed on private sector organizations and local governments in Florida, clarify and reduce the requirements, and educate the affected entities through various communications media, including voice, data, video, radio, and image.
(2) Departments shall consider applying to the Innovation Investment Program, pursuant to s. 216.235, for financial assistance required in streamlining and integrating information systems to reduce paperwork requirements.
(3) Departments shall make available, upon request, a list of the initiatives taken to reduce paperwork associated with collecting information from individuals, private sector organizations, and local governments.
History.—s. 3, ch. 96-390; s. 30, ch. 2004-335.
CUSTOMER SERVICE STANDARDS
23.30 Florida Customer Service Standards Act.
23.30 Florida Customer Service Standards Act.—
(1) SHORT TITLE.—This section may be cited as the “Florida Customer Service Standards Act.”
(2) PURPOSE.—It is the purpose of this section to direct state departments to practice and employ all the measures set forth in this section.
(3) DEFINITIONS.—As used in this section:
(a) “Customer” means any member of the public who uses or requests services or information provided by a state department or who is required by statute to interact with the department.
(b) “Department” means a principal administrative unit within the executive branch of state government, as set forth in chapter 20, and also includes the Public Service Commission.
(4) MEASURES TO BE IMPLEMENTED.—State departments shall:
(a) Designate an employee or employees in the department who shall be responsible for facilitating the resolution of customer complaints, including any customer complaints regarding unsatisfactory treatment by department employees.
(b) Provide available information, except information which is confidential pursuant to any other state or federal law, and accurate responses to questions and requests for assistance in a prompt manner.
(c) Acknowledge receipt of a telephonic or electronic question or request by the end of the next business day.
(d) Provide local or toll-free telephonic or electronic access either through a centralized complaint-intake call center or directly to a department employee or employees designated to resolve customer complaints.
(e) Develop a process for review by upper-level management of any customer complaints not resolved by the department employee or employees designated to resolve customer complaints. In evaluating the appropriateness of response time, management may consider periodic, high volume inquiries as a justifiable cause of delay.
(f) Develop customer satisfaction measures as part of the department’s performance measurement system.
(g) Employ a system by which customer complaints and resolutions of those complaints are tracked.
(h) Provide statistical data on customer complaints and resolutions of those complaints, and on customer satisfaction measures in annual reports or other performance publications, and use this data when conducting management and budget planning activities.
(i) Provide training to employees on improving customer service and on the role of the department employee or employees designated to resolve customer complaints.
(j) Include in the departmental strategic plan a program outline or goal regarding customer service.
(k) Conduct interdepartmental discussions on methods of providing and improving customer service.
(5) OPERATING HOURS.—Departments shall be staffed and open to the public for business on all regular business days.
(6) FUNDING.—Departments shall use available resources to achieve the purposes of this section.
(7) FAILURE TO COMPLY.—No cause of action shall arise in favor of any person due to a department’s failure to comply with any provision of this section.
(8) EXCEPTIONS.—This section does not apply to a person who uses or requests services or information from a department when such service or information is related to that person’s:
(a) Pending or current criminal prosecution;
(b) Current incarceration;
(c) Pending administrative action; or
(d) Current lawful state or local government custody.