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Business Observer Thursday, Jul. 9, 2009 9 years ago

Business Landscaping

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On June 30, Gov. Charlie Crist finished acting on 262 bills brought to him by the 2009 Legislature.
by: Jay Brady Government Editor

On June 30, Gov. Charlie Crist finished acting on 262 bills brought to him by the 2009 Legislature.

Nine of those proposed laws were vetoed, including five of particular interest to business.

Many laws were influenced by the Senate Select Committee on Florida's Economy, tasked with shaping legislation to pull the state out of the economic doldrums sooner rather than later. One such bill is House Bill 485, known as the
“Fast Track Economic Stimulus for Small Business.”

For other legislation that the governor signed into law, some of the key ones for business include SB 810 that for five years raises the amount of an employee's wages subject to an employer's contribution, and House Bill 903 that restored order in workers' compensation rates following an unfavorable court decision last fall.

And then there was SB 360, amending the growth management laws to encourage more compact development. This bill received the most press here and around the state as it was misinterpreted by anti-growth groups and mainstream media outlets.

Because the growth bill leaves it up to local governments to implement changes to concurrency laws blamed for urban sprawl, and how to pay for infrastructure, its ultimate impact on the future development of the state remains uncertain. The bill does, however, remove some of the more onerous layers of state review of developments, particularly the larger “developments of regional impact.”

Two bills vetoed by the governor with big constituencies include SB 714 and HB 1171. SB 714 pertains, in part, to retrofitting condominiums with sprinklers and fire alarm systems, and HB 1171, the Consumer Choice Act, would have exempted large insurers from rate regulation allowing consumers to choose if they prefer paying more for an insurance policy with a greater likelihood of paying claims.

The adjoining chart shows the business-related bills signed and vetoed by Crist.

INFORMATION

To see the full list of Governor Charlie Crist's legislative actions go to www.flgov.com/leg_actions/2009/2009_all.pdf.

For more information about all bills go to www.flsenate.gov and www.myfloridahouse.gov.

Odd-numbered bills are House bills and even-numbered bills are Senate bills.

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