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CS/CS/CS/HB 435 — Administrative Procedures

by State Affairs Committee; Government Operations Appropriations Subcommittee; Rulemaking Oversight and Repeal Subcommittee; and Rep. Adkins (CS/SB 718 by Appropriations Committee and Senator Lee)

This summary is provided for information only and does not represent the opinion of any Senator, Senate Officer, or Senate Office.

Prepared by: Judiciary Committee (JU)

This bill makes a number of changes to the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), which relate to a state agency’s reliance on unadopted or invalid rules and the provision of notices and information to the public. Among the most notable changes, the bill:

  • Generally requires an agency that initiates rulemaking after a public hearing relating to an unadopted rule to file a notice of proposed rule within a time certain.
  • Increases the amount of information relating to agency rulemaking which must be published in the Florida Administrative Register.
  • Provides that the decision of an administrative law judge on the validity of the rule or unadopted rule is final agency action during a rule challenge that is asserted as a defense to agency action.
  • Prohibits an administrative law judge from entering a summary final order with respect to a rule challenge asserted as a defense to agency action.
  • Authorizes a the petitioner in a hearing that does not involve disputed facts to assert a rule challenge as a defense to agency action and have the rule challenge decided by an administrative law judge instead of the agency.
  • Authorizes the rules ombudsman in the Executive Office of the Governor to require state agencies to review and designate rules the violation of which would be a minor violation.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2015.

Vote: Senate 37-3; House 112-0