2010 Legislative Highlights
The following are some of the more significant actions which occurred during the 2010 regular legislative session relating to the public's right of access to meetings and records.
Credit History--Credit history information and credit scores held by the Office of Financial Regulation within the Department of Financial Services for purposes of licensing loan originators, mortgage brokers, and mortgage lenders are exempt from disclosure except as provided therein. Chapter 2010-169, Laws of Florida, amending s. 494.00125, F.S., to add a new subsection (3).
Examination techniques of Office of Financial Regulation--Information revealing examination techniques or procedures used by the Office of Financial Regulation pursuant to Ch. 517, F.S., the Florida Securities and Investor Protection Act, is confidential and exempt from disclosure. Chapter 2010-65, Laws of Florida, creating s. 517.2016, F.S.
Local Government's Ethics Investigations--Where a county or municipality has established a local investigatory process to enforce more stringent standards of conduct and disclosure requirements as provided in s. 112.326, F.S., the complaint and records relating to the complaint or to any preliminary investigation are exempt until the complaint is dismissed as legally insufficient, the alleged violator requests in writing that such records and proceedings be made public, or the county or municipality determines that probable cause exists. Chapter 2010-130, Laws of Florida, amending s. 112.324(2), F.S.
Public Defenders and Assistant Public Defenders, Criminal Conflict and Civil Regional Counsel and assistant counsel-- The home addresses, telephone numbers, and photographs of current or former public defenders, assistant public defenders, criminal conflict and civil regional counsel, and assistant criminal conflict and civil regional counsel as well as the home addresses, telephone numbers, and places of employment of the spouses and children of such defenders or counsel, and the names and locations of schools and day care facilities attended by the children of such defenders or counsel are exempt from disclosure. Chapter 2010- 171, Laws of Florida, creating s. 119.071(4)(d)1.j., F.S.
Public Transit Providers-- Personal identifying information held by a public transit provider for the purpose of facilitating the prepayment of transit fares or the acquisition of a prepaid transit fare card or similar device is exempt from disclosure. Chapter 2010-196, Laws of Florida, creating s. 341.3026, F.S.
Recordings of Closed Meetings--Several bills were enacted into law requiring the recording of closed meetings but providing that such recordings are exempt from disclosure as provided therein. See, e.g., Chapter 2010-76, Laws of Florida, amending s. 497.172, F.S. (closed meeting of the Board of Funeral, Cemetery, and Consumer Services where licensure examination questions or answers are discussed, as well as of a closed meeting of a probable cause panel of the board); Chapter 2010-40, Laws of Florida, amending s. 383.412, F.S. (closed meetings of state child abuse death review committee or local committee); Chapter 2010-77, Laws of Florida, amending s. 1005.38, F.S. (closed meeting of a probable cause panel of the Commission for Independent Education); Chapter 2010-89, Laws of Florida, amending s. 627.0628, F.S. (closed meeting of the Commission on Hurricane Loss Projection Methodology or of a rate proceeding on insurer's rate filing at which confidential and exempt trade secrets are discussed).
Stalking Victims--The names, addresses, and telephone numbers of stalking or aggravated stalking victims held by the Office of the Attorney General or contained in voter registration records and voting records held by the Department of State or the supervisor of elections are exempt from disclosure. Chapter 2010-115, Laws of Florida, amending s. 97.0585, F.S., to add a new subsection (3).