Florida Senate - 2021 SB 1748 By Senator Jones 35-00889-21 20211748__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to public records; amending s. 83.626, 3 F.S.; exempting a defendant’s name that has been 4 removed from the progress docket and certain sealed 5 records relating to eviction proceedings from public 6 records requirements; providing a statement of public 7 necessity; providing a contingent effective date. 8 9 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 10 11 Section 1. Subsection (6) is added to section 83.626, 12 Florida Statutes, as created by SB ___, 2021 Regular Session, to 13 read: 14 83.626 Court records of eviction proceedings.— 15 (6) A defendant’s name that is removed from the progress 16 docket pursuant to this section and any records sealed under 17 this section are confidential and exempt from s. 24(a), Art. I 18 of the State Constitution. 19 Section 2. The Legislature finds that it is a public 20 necessity that certain court records and information relating to 21 eviction proceedings be made exempt from s. 24(a), Article I of 22 the State Constitution. Florida has the third-highest homeless 23 population in the United States. Defendants in eviction 24 proceedings are frequently blacklisted by landlords and unable 25 to find affordable housing, regardless of whether a judgment was 26 ever entered against the defendant. This results in increased 27 homelessness and negatively affects this state’s economy and the 28 public health of its residents. Therefore, it is necessary that 29 certain court records and information relating to eviction 30 proceedings be protected to ensure that the negative health and 31 economic impacts of defendants being blacklisted from renting 32 housing are not exacerbated. 33 Section 3. This act shall take effect on the same date that 34 SB ____ or similar legislation takes effect, if such legislation 35 is adopted in the same legislative session or an extension 36 thereof and becomes a law.