Posts Tagged ‘Jennifer Sullivan’

House committee advances lobbying ban; impeachment power for attorneys, public defenders

Thursday, March 16th, 2017

Florida lawmakers advanced two key pieces of legislation through the House Thursday, including one to lengthen the period before elected officials could begin lobbying after their time in office.
The other bill would make state attorneys and public defenders in each judicial district eligible for impeachment under the governor’s power.
In an overwhelming vote, the House Public Integrity and Ethics Committee passed PCB PIE 17-01 and HJR 999, though there was thorough debate by both the public and committee members on each measure.
PCB PIE 17-01, which has yet to be given a bill number and was introduced by Rep. Jennifer Sullivan, vice chair of the committee, leaps forward from two years to six years before a former Florida lawmaker can be compensated for through connections and inherent benefits legislators reap while employed in such positions.
The intention, Sullivan said, was to hedge off corruption while re-establishing integrity in elected officials. By waiting six years, those supposed connections in the Statehouse may no longer be there, she said.
“I think it’s really important that we instill trust in this process again,” she told the committee in closing the measure after debate. “I think we owe that to the (constituents).”
For years, corruption scandals have plagued Florida lawmakers, bringing about wide skepticism among the voters of the Sunshine State.
Rep. Chuck Clemons, Sr., agreed with the amendment in debate, referencing the widespread practice of lawmakers becoming lobbyists on behalf of special interest groups due to the close connections they typically still have after leaving office.
“How do you stop the revolving door unless you stop the revolving door,” he said. “This is the ‘kill the certain perks’ bill. This is the ‘no longer fresh’ bill. You’re serving because you believe in the rock bottom idea that you are serving to serve, not to gain anything.”
But Rep. David Richardson, while in favor of the measure, had concerns it

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More legislative hopefuls file to run in 2018, 2020

Monday, January 30th, 2017

The list of incumbents eyeing re-election just keeps getting longer.
State elections records show dozens of members of the state House and Senate have filed to run for re-election in 2018, and several more are looking ahead to 2020.
Sen. Gary Farmer is one of those lawmakers thinking about his next race. He filed to run for re-election in Senate District 34 on Jan. 24. Farmer won his seat in 2016, beating out two well-known South Florida Democrats for the seat. Sen. Bobby Powell Jr. also filed to run for re-election in Senate District 30 on Jan. 26.
Several House members also recently filed for re-election in 2018, including Republican Reps. Charles Wesley Clemons Sr., Stan McClain, David Santiago, Jennifer Sullivan, and Mike Miller.
And it isn’t just incumbents looking ahead to the next election.
Former Rep. James Bush III is looking to get back to the Florida House, filing to run for House District 109 on Jan. 23. The Democrat served in the House from 2008 to 2010, when he stepped down to run in Florida’s 17th Congressional District.
Polk County Commissioner Melony Bell is looking to make the leap to state government, filing to run in House District 56 on Jan. 17. Bell would face Democrat David Poulin, who filed to run on Jan. 9.
Looking ahead to 2020: Sen. Doug Broxson is already gearing up his next election. Broxson filed to run again in Senate District 1 on Jan. 12.
And he isn’t alone. Sen. Randolph Bracy filed to run again in Senate District 11 on Jan. 24; while Sen. Jose Javier Rodriguez filed to run again in Senate District 37 on Jan. 23.
The post More legislative hopefuls file to run in 2018, 2020 appeared first on Florida Politics.

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House panel OK’s lobbying ban extensions, won’t impeach judge

Tuesday, January 24th, 2017

A new House ethics panel on Tuesday unanimously approved two measures as part of Speaker Richard Corcoran’s new “culture of transparency.”
One (PIE 17-01) would increase the ban on former lawmakers and statewide elected officers lobbying their colleagues after leaving office from two years to six years by way of a constitutional amendment.
The other (PIE 17-02) “extend(s) the prohibition on legislators lobbying the executive branch” from two to six years after leaving office.
Also Tuesday, Larry Metz—who chairs the Public Integrity and Ethics Committee—told members he had been quietly looking into articles of impeachment against a Jacksonville judge.
The news seemed to confirm rumors this week that Circuit Judge Mark Hulsey III had gotten wind of the House’s investigation; he resigned Monday, mooting any impeachment.
Only vice-chair Jennifer Sullivan and Democratic ranking member David Richardson knew about the preparations, Metz said.
Hulsey had been charged, among other things, with referring to a woman attorney by using a vulgar term for female genitalia, mistreating courthouse staff attorneys and judicial assistants, and saying that African Americans “should go get back on a ship and go back to Africa,” according to a JQC report. Hulsey denied the allegations.
Though judicial misconduct cases normally are handled by the Judicial Qualifications Commission (JQC), the state constitution empowers the House to impeach the “governor, lieutenant governor, members of the cabinet, justices of the supreme court, judges of district courts of appeal, judges of circuit courts, and judges of county courts” for any “misdemeanor in office.”
Metz said it was his idea to pursue impeaching Hulsey, for which Corcoran gave his OK. An impeachment would have had to be tried in the Senate.
“The speaker, I think, deserves a lot of credit for leading us in this direction and having higher standards of conduct and not allowing credible

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Central Florida reps pleased with tourism, health care subcommittee chairs

Tuesday, December 13th, 2016

While no one from Central Florida will be chairing full committees in the Florida House of Representatives this spring, several local representatives will be chairing key subcommittees, Health Care Appropriations, Tourism & Gaming Control, and Local, Federal & Veterans Affairs.
The committee appointments came down Monday from House Speaker Richard Corcoran.
State Rep. Mike La Rosa, a Saint Cloud Republican, will chair the Tourism & Gaming Control Subcommittee of the Commerce Committee, a panel that’s not only critical to Central Florida’s economy but highly populated by Central Florida members. Orlando Republican Mike Miller will be vice chair, while Altamonte Springs Republican Scott Plakon and Orlando Democrat Amy Mercado also will be on it.
Sanford Republican Jason Brodeur will be chairing the House Subcommittee on Health Care Appropriations in the Appropriations Committee, a committee likely to be highly active as president-elect Donald Trump and the Republican Congress vow to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, moving responsibilities to the states.
Plakon will chair the Local, Federal & Veterans Affairs Subcommittee of the Government Accountability Committee, another panel likely to be busy with fall-out from the ObamaCare dismantling planned in Washington. Miller, Orlando Democrats Carlos Guillermo Smith and Kamia Brown also will serve on that subcommittee.
La Rosa that the Tourism & Gaming Control appointment is critical because, “Florida can enhance its position as a global leader in tourism and also optimize the current gaming industry arrangement for the mutual benefit of all Floridians. Now is the time to recognize that Florida needs to focus on gaining more visitors for our state and also realize this must be balanced by keeping our focus on keeping the advantage of being a family friendly region.
“The tourism industry is the largest employer in our state and we must also work on creating and promoting a positive business environment for

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Jason Brodeur, Jennifer Sullivan, John Cortes, Bruce Antone return to House

Wednesday, November 9th, 2016

Facing light competition, state Reps. Jennifer Sullivan, Jason Brodeur, John Cortes, and Bruce Antone cruised to re-election to Florida House seats in Central Florida Tuesday.
Brodeur, a Republican from Sanford, won his fourth term in the House, defeating independent candidate Steve Edmunds in House District 28, by 64 percent to 36 percent.
Sullivan, a Republican from Eustis, won a third term after she defeated independent candidate Robert Rightmyer 73 percent to 27 percent in House District 31.
Cortes, a Democrat from Kissimmee, won his second term in the House, collecting 98 percent against a write-in candidate in HD 43.
Antone, a Democrat from Orlando, got 99 percent of the vote against a write-in candidate in HD 46, winning his second term in that district after seeing two terms earlier in another Orlando-based district.
The post Jason Brodeur, Jennifer Sullivan, John Cortes, Bruce Antone return to House appeared first on Florida Politics.

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