Florida Senate - 2018 SB 1940 By Senators Galvano and Benacquisto 21-03852-18 20181940__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to public records and public meetings; 3 amending s. 943.082, F.S.; creating an exemption from 4 public records requirements for the identity of a 5 reporting party held by a specified entity; amending 6 s. 943.687, F.S.; providing an exemption from public 7 meetings requirements for portions of meetings of the 8 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety 9 Commission at which exempt or confidential and exempt 10 information is discussed; amending s. 1006.12, F.S.; 11 providing an exemption from public records 12 requirements for information that would identify 13 whether a particular individual has been appointed as 14 a safe-school officer; providing for future 15 legislative review and repeal of the exemptions; 16 providing statements of public necessity; providing a 17 contingent effective date. 18 19 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 20 21 Section 1. Subsection (6) is added to section 943.082, 22 Florida Statutes, as created by SB 7026, 2018 Regular Session, 23 to read: 24 943.082 School Safety Awareness Program.— 25 (6) The identity of the reporting party held by the 26 department, a law enforcement agency, or school officials is 27 confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I 28 of the State Constitution. This subsection is subject to the 29 Open Government Sunset Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 30 and shall stand repealed on October 2, 2023, unless reviewed and 31 saved from repeal through reenactment by the Legislature. 32 Section 2. Present subsection (7) of s. 943.687, Florida 33 Statutes, as created by SB 7026, 2018 Regular Session, is 34 renumbered as subsection (8), and a new subsection (7) is added 35 to that section, to read: 36 943.687 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety 37 Commission.— 38 (7) Any portion of a meeting of the Marjory Stoneman 39 Douglas High School Public Safety Commission at which exempt or 40 confidential and exempt information is discussed is exempt from 41 s. 286.011 and s. 24(b), Art. I of the State Constitution. This 42 subsection is subject to the Open Government Sunset Review Act 43 in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand repealed on October 44 2, 2023, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through 45 reenactment by the Legislature. 46 Section 3. Subsection (4) is added to section 1006.12, 47 Florida Statutes, as amended by SB 7026, 2018 Regular Session, 48 to read: 49 1006.12 Safe-school officers at each public school.— 50 (4) Any information that would identify whether a 51 particular individual has been appointed as a safe-school 52 officer pursuant to this section held by a law enforcement 53 agency, school district, or charter school is exempt from s. 54 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution. This 55 subsection is subject to the Open Government Sunset Review Act 56 in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand repealed on October 57 2, 2023, unless reviewed and saved from repeal through 58 reenactment by the Legislature. 59 Section 4. (1) The Legislature finds that it is a public 60 necessity that the identity of a person reporting unsafe, 61 potentially harmful, dangerous, violent, or criminal activities, 62 or the threat of these activities, held by the Department of Law 63 Enforcement, a law enforcement agency, or school officials, be 64 made confidential and exempt from s. 119.07(1), Florida 65 Statutes, and s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution if 66 the reporting person provides his or her identity. The public 67 records exemption for the identity of those individuals 68 reporting potentially harmful or threatening activities as part 69 of the School Safety Awareness Program encourages individuals to 70 act and not be fearful that their identities will be revealed to 71 their fellow students. Without the public records exemption, 72 individuals reporting such activities might be less willing to 73 report their knowledge of these possible activities to the 74 appropriate authorities out of fear. Ensuring their identities 75 are protected will encourage reporting, which could lead to law 76 enforcement or other appropriate agencies intervening before an 77 incident of mass violence occurs. 78 (2) The Legislature also finds that it is a public 79 necessity that any portion of a meeting of the Marjory Stoneman 80 Douglas High School Public Safety Commission at which exempt or 81 confidential and exempt information is discussed be made exempt 82 from s. 286.011, Florida Statutes, and s. 24(b), Article I of 83 the State Constitution. The purpose of the commission is to 84 investigate failures in the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School 85 shooting and prior mass violence incidents in Florida and 86 develop recommendations for system improvements. In order to 87 fulfill its directive, the commission must be able to discuss 88 exempt or confidential and exempt information that it receives 89 as part of its investigation. The public meetings exemption will 90 allow the commission to review and discuss exempt or 91 confidential and exempt information that will be useful in 92 forming meaningful recommendations for system improvements for 93 prevention and response to mass violence incidents. As such, it 94 is a necessity that those portions of meetings wherein exempt or 95 confidential and exempt information is discussed be made exempt 96 from public meetings requirements. If such portions of meeting 97 are not closed, then the public records exemptions would be 98 negated. Thus, the Legislature finds that the public meeting 99 exemption is a public necessity in order to ensure the effective 100 and efficient administration of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas 101 High School Public Safety Commission. 102 (3) The Legislature further finds that it is a public 103 necessity that any information that would identify whether a 104 particular individual has been appointed as a safe-school 105 officer held by a law enforcement agency, school district, or 106 charter school be made exempt from s. 119.07(1), Florida 107 Statutes, and s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution. 108 School security and student safety are fundamental priorities in 109 this state. In light of the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman 110 Douglas High School, in which 14 students and 3 adults were shot 111 and killed on February 14, 2018, school districts in this state 112 must be allowed to provide a supplemental security presence. To 113 maximize the effectiveness of safe-school officers as a 114 deterrent and responsive factor to situations threatening the 115 lives of students and school staff, safe-school officers may 116 perform their school-related duties while carrying a concealed 117 weapon. Disclosure of the identity of a safe-school officer can 118 affect his or her ability to adequately respond to an active 119 assailant situation. Accordingly, it is necessary to protect the 120 identity of safe-school officers from public records 121 requirements in order to effectively and efficiently implement 122 the purpose and intent of the program. 123 Section 5. This act shall take effect on the same date that 124 SB 7026 or similar legislation takes effect, if such legislation 125 is adopted in the same legislative session or an extension 126 thereof and becomes a law.