TALLAHASSEE – The following five bills enacted during the 2008 legislative session create new exemptions or expand existing exemptions to the state Public Records and Open Meetings laws.  The bills become law unless vetoed by Gov. Charlie Crist.  Copies of the legislation are available at the Florida Legislature’s Web site (www.leg.state.fl.us).  Chief sponsors of the bills are in parentheses at the end of the summaries.  SB=Senate Bill; HB=House Bill; CS = Committee Substitute.


The following five bills create new exemptions or expand existing exemptions to the state Public Records and Open Meetings laws.  The bills become law unless vetoed by Gov. Charlie Crist.


CS/SB 766 Exemption/Judicial and Administrative Officials:  Amends s. 119.071, F.S., creating a public record exemption for home addresses and telephone numbers of general magistrates, special magistrates, judges of compensation claims, administrative law judges of the Division of Administrative Hearings, and child support enforcement hearing officers, and the home addresses, telephone numbers, places of employment, and/or schools and daycare facilities of the spouses and children of these officials, if the official provides a written statement that he has made reasonable efforts to protect the information from being accessible by the public.  (Rich, D-Sunrise)  Approved by Gov. Crist May 28.


CS/HB 863 Exemption/Direct-Support Organization/DVA:  Amends s. 292.055, F.S., creating a public records exemption for the identities of, and information about, certain donors and prospective donors to the direct-support organization of the Department of Veterans’ Affairs, including those parts of direct-support organization meetings during which the donors’ or potential donors’ identities are discussed.  (Reagan, R-Sarasota)  Approved by Gov. Crist May 28.


CS/HB 1141 Exemption/Sexual Violence Victim:  Amends s. 741.313, F.S., expanding exemption to include certain records and time sheets documenting leave due to acts of sexual violence, submitted to an agency by an employee who is the victim.  (Jenne, D-Davie)


CS/SB 2610 Exemption/Organ & Tissue Donor Registry:  Creates exemption for donor-identifying information in the organ and tissue donor registry.  Allows disclosure under certain circumstances to organ, tissue, and eye procurement agencies certified by the Agency for Health Care Administration or persons conducting research.  (Oelrich, R-Gainesville)  Presented to Gov. Crist June 13.


HB 7033 Exemption/Complaint of Discrimination:  Amends s. 119.0711(1), F.S., expanding exemption for complaints and other records about discrimination relating to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, handicap, or marital status in connection with hiring preferences, position classifications, salary, benefits, discipline, discharge, employee performance, evaluations, or other related activities, to any governmental agency as defined in ch. 119, F.S., until a finding is made regarding probable cause, the investigation about the complaint becomes inactive, or the complaint or record is made part of the official record of any hearing or court proceeding. (H. Government Efficiency & Accountability Council and Gardiner, R-Orlando)  Approved by Gov. Crist June 10.