Florida Senate - 2020                                    SB 1718
       By Senator Brandes
       24-01992-20                                           20201718__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to public meetings and records;
    3         amending s. 945.0912, F.S.; exempting from public
    4         meetings requirements the protected health information
    5         of specified inmates being considered for the
    6         conditional aging inmate release program; exempting
    7         from public records requirements certain records used
    8         by the reviewing panel to make a determination of the
    9         appropriateness of conditional aging inmate release
   10         and the recordings of closed panel review hearings;
   11         providing for legislative review and repeal of the
   12         exemption; providing a statement of public necessity;
   13         providing an effective date.
   15  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   17         Section 1. Present subsection (7) of section 945.0912,
   18  Florida Statutes, as created by SB 574, 2020 Regular Session, is
   19  redesignated as subsection (8), and a new subsection (7) is
   20  added to that section, to read:
   21         945.0912 Conditional aging inmate release.—
   23         (a)That portion of a panel review hearing conducted in
   24  accordance with this section during which the panel will discuss
   25  protected information that is confidential and exempt under
   26  state or federal law, such as protected health information
   27  covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Protection Act,
   28  is exempt from s. 286.011 and s. 24(b), Art. I of the State
   29  Constitution. If the panel must discuss exempt information
   30  during the course of its meeting, the following requirements
   31  must be met:
   32         1.The panel must announce at the public meeting that, in
   33  connection with the performance of the panel’s duties, protected
   34  information must be discussed;
   35         2.The panel must declare the specific reasons that it is
   36  necessary to close the meeting, or a portion thereof, in a
   37  document that is a public record and filed with the official
   38  records of the program; and
   39         3.The entire closed hearing must be recorded. The
   40  recording must include the times of commencement and termination
   41  of the closed hearing or portion thereof, all discussion and
   42  proceedings, and the names of the persons present. The
   43  department shall maintain the recording.
   44         (b)1.That portion of the records the panel uses to
   45  determine the appropriateness of conditional aging inmate
   46  release which includes any of the inmate’s protected information
   47  is confidential and exempt from disclosure under s. 119.07(1)
   48  and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State Constitution.
   49         2.Any audio or video recording of, and any minutes and
   50  notes generated during, a closed hearing of the panel or closed
   51  portion of a hearing of the panel are exempt from disclosure
   52  under s. 119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Art. I of the State
   53  Constitution. Such audio or video recording and minutes and
   54  notes must be retained pursuant to the requirements of s.
   55  119.021.
   56         (c)Only members of the panel, staff supporting the panel’s
   57  functions, and other persons whose presence has been authorized
   58  by the panel shall be allowed to attend the closed portions of
   59  panel hearings. The panel shall ensure that any closure of its
   60  meetings as authorized by this section is limited so that the
   61  policy of the state in favor of public meetings is maintained.
   62         (d)This subsection is subject to the Open Government
   63  Sunset Review Act in accordance with s. 119.15 and shall stand
   64  repealed on October 2, 2025, unless reviewed and saved from
   65  repeal through reenactment by the Legislature.
   66         Section 2. The Legislature finds that it is a public
   67  necessity that the hearings or portions of hearings during which
   68  an inmate’s personal information is discussed by the review
   69  panel considering an inmate’s conditional aging inmate release
   70  be made exempt from s. 286.011, Florida Statutes, and s. 24(b),
   71  Article I of the State Constitution. The Legislature finds that
   72  the rights of an inmate afforded under other state or federal
   73  laws that deem certain personal information confidential, such
   74  as protected health information covered by the Health Insurance
   75  Portability and Protection Act, be upheld and that the inmate’s
   76  personal information not be disclosed to the public during such
   77  hearings. The Legislature also finds that the recordings of a
   78  panel review hearing and the records used by the panel to make
   79  its determination be made exempt from disclosure under s.
   80  119.07(1) and s. 24(a), Article I of the State Constitution. The
   81  inmate’s personal health information, if publicly available,
   82  could be used to invade his or her personal privacy. Making
   83  these reports and discussions of such information confidential
   84  and exempt from disclosure will protect information of a
   85  sensitive personal nature, the release of which could cause
   86  unwarranted damage to the privacy rights of the inmate. The
   87  Legislature therefore finds that it is a public necessity that
   88  such protected information remain confidential and exempt.
   89         Section 3. This act shall take effect on the same date that
   90  SB 574 or similar legislation relating to conditional aging
   91  inmate release takes effect, if such legislation is adopted in
   92  the same legislative session or an extension thereof and becomes
   93  a law.