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The Florida Senate

CS/CS/CS/SB 318 — Public Records/Child Abuse, Abandonment, or Neglect

by Rules Committee; Education Committee; Children, Families, and Elder Affairs Committee; and Senator Montford

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

Prepared by: Children, Families, and Elder Affairs Committee (CF)

The bill expands the public records exemption that protects the name of a reporter of child abuse, abandonment, or neglect to also include other identifying information. Such information would be protected and would only be released to specified persons, officials, and agencies specified in law.

The bill subjects this public record exemption to the Open Government Sunset Review Act, and thus the exemption will be repealed on October 2, 2024, unless it is reviewed and saved from repeal by the Legislature. The bill provides a statement of public necessity as required by the State Constitution that protecting such information of reporters will strengthen mandatory reporting laws by helping ensure that all instances of known or suspected child abuse, abandonment, or neglect are reported to the Department of Children and Families.

If approved by the Governor, these provisions take effect July 1, 2019.

Vote: Senate 38-0; House 112-0