April 26, 2013 •
Florida Ethics Bill Heads to Governor Scott
Perhaps the most talked-about piece of legislation this session, Senate Bill 2 was passed unanimously by both houses of the Florida Legislature.
The final ethics bill:
- Prohibits members of the legislature from acting as lobbyists for compensation before an executive branch agency, agency official, or employee for two years after leaving office. The version passed by the House eliminated an original provision preventing legislators from becoming lobbyists or principals of lobbying firms lobbying the legislature;
- Provides for a fine of up to $5,000 for executive branch lobbyists who fail to disclose required material facts as required or knowingly provide false information;
- Allows the Commission on Ethics to investigate whether a lobbyist has made a prohibited expenditure if a complaint is filed; and
- Prohibits vendors from providing gifts to a reporting individual or procurement employee for vendors doing business with the reporting individual’s or procurement employee’s agency.
The ethics bill was a top priority of Senate President Don Gaetz. He called the bill his “proudest moment as a senator.” The bill was sent immediately to Governor Rick Scott, who has seven days to sign or veto the bill.
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