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The Florida Senate

President Office — Press Release


February 25, 2021

CONTACT: Katie Betta, (850) 339-7087,
Jenna Sarkissian, 352-292-2878

Joint Media Advisory: Florida Senate, Florida House Opening Day 2021

Tallahassee —

The Florida Senate and Florida House of Representatives will convene for the Opening Day of the 2021 Regular Session of the Florida Legislature on Tuesday, March 2, 2021. In light of the ongoing pandemic, both houses of the Florida Legislature will have specific guidelines in place for media, including a requirement that all members of the media are tested for COVID-19 no later than Monday, March 1, 2021 (see below for specific information regarding testing).

Remote viewing for all items listed below will be available at


9:30 a.m. – Senate Session

Senate Chamber

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399


10:00 a.m. – House Session

House Chamber

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399


11:00 a.m. – Joint Session

House Chamber (Senators will view from the Senate Chamber.)

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399


1:00 p.m. – Post-Session Media Availability with President Wilton Simpson

James E. "Jim" King, Jr., Committee Room

401 Senate Office Building

404 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399


3:15 p.m. – Post-Session Media Availability with Speaker Chris Sprowls

Room 333

The Capitol

400 S. Monroe St.

Tallahassee, FL 32399


Required COVID-19 Testing

In keeping with protocols established for the 2021 Interim Committee Weeks, each week that you plan to cover the Legislature in person, you are required to schedule an appointment to be tested at the joint legislative testing site at the portico of the Knott Building the day prior to your in-person appearance in the Capitol. A new link for testing sign up will be available each week. If you plan to cover Opening Day, you must respond to this email, or reach out to one of the listed House or Senate media contacts to receive the testing link.


Press Credentials

Capitol Police issue a Capitol Complex press badge to members of the media who apply and are approved. To be permitted into reserved, press-only spaces, you will need to show a current Capitol Complex press badge. The application is attached and should be submitted as soon as possible for expedited processing. While the building remains closed, you may send your completed applications and attachments to Capitol Police will provide information regarding timeline and pickup.


Press Accommodations

While in the Capitol Complex, members of the press should adhere to current CDC guidelines designed to reduce the spread of COVID-19. Those guidelines include wearing a face covering, avoiding close contact with people who do not live in your household, washing your hands often, and monitoring your health daily.


  • Press Galleries: Limited seating will be available in both the Senate and the House press galleries. A portable HEPA filter has been installed in each press gallery, and sanitizing items are available for use in between frequent cleanings.
    • Senate Public Gallery and Camera Wells: The Senate’s public gallery is closed. Camera wells in the Senate Gallery are open to Videographers and Still Photographers only.
    • House Public Gallery and Camera Wells: The House’s East and West public galleries are reserved only for guests who have been invited and registered. Camera wells in the House Gallery and Press Gallery are open to Videographers and Still Photographers only.


  • Joint Media Workspace: A designated joint media work room for reporters covering the Senate and House on Opening Day will be available in the House Room 333, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. on March 2, 2021.


  • Audio/Video Feed: The Florida Channel and will provide an audio/video mult box that can be accessed from the 4th Floor Rotunda. Reporters will be able to access feeds for the House, Senate and Joint Sessions from the audio/video mult box. The Florida Channel can be reached at 850-488-1281.


  • Floor Photography: The House and Senate Floors will be open during limited windows for still photography during their respective sessions.
    • Senate: Still photographers accessing the Senate floor must pick up a floor pass at the Office of the Senate Sergeant at Arms next to the Senate Chamber.
    • House: Still photographers accessing the House floor must pick up a temporary media floor pass in the Speaker’s Office lobby. The pass must be returned immediately upon exiting the floor.