Florida Senate - 2015                        COMMITTEE AMENDMENT
       Bill No. CS for SB 646
                              LEGISLATIVE ACTION                        
                    Senate             .             House              
                  Comm: RCS            .                                
                  03/26/2015           .                                

       The Committee on Appropriations (Benacquisto) recommended the
    1         Senate Amendment 
    3         Delete lines 48 - 66
    4  and insert:
    5         Section 2. The Legislature finds that it is a public
    6  necessity that the personal financial and health information of
    7  a consumer held by the Florida Prepaid College Board, Florida
    8  ABLE, Inc., the Florida ABLE program, or an agent or service
    9  provider thereof, relating to an ABLE account or a participation
   10  agreement, or any information that would identify a consumer, be
   11  made confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1), Florida
   12  Statutes, and s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution. The
   13  Florida ABLE program allows eligible individuals with
   14  disabilities, their family members, and others to contribute
   15  funds to an ABLE account without affecting the individual’s
   16  eligibility for state and federal benefits. It allows the
   17  individual to use those funds for qualified disability expenses,
   18  such as education, housing, transportation, or other expenses
   19  authorized through federal regulations. The public record
   20  exemption for information that would identify a consumer ensures
   21  that information of a sensitive personal nature concerning a
   22  party to a participation agreement is protected. Without such
   23  protection, an individual may be less likely to take advantage
   24  of the program, thus hindering the effective and efficient
   25  administration of the Florida ABLE program. It may also make the
   26  individual vulnerable to abuse and exploitation. Disclosure of
   27  sensitive financial information regarding a consumer under the
   28  Florida ABLE program could create the opportunity for theft,
   29  identity theft, fraud, and other illegal activity, thereby
   30  jeopardizing the financial security of the consumer and placing
   31  him or her at risk for substantial financial harm. Further, each
   32  individual has a reasonable expectation of and a right to
   33  privacy in all matters concerning personal financial interests.
   34  The Legislature further finds that it is a public necessity to
   35  protect a consumer’s personal health information because such
   36  information is traditionally a private and confidential matter
   37  between the patient and health care provider. The private and
   38  confidential nature of personal health matters pervades both the
   39  public and private health care sectors, and public disclosure of
   40  such personal health information relating to a consumer under
   41  the Florida ABLE program could negatively affect an individual’s
   42  business and personal relationships and cause detrimental
   43  financial consequences.