breaking news

FAU wins in lawsuit by fired professor who said Sandy Hook was a hoax

NEW: Gov. Scott signs opioid abuse bill, 27 other measures into law


Gov. Rick Scott signed 28 bills into law on Wednesday, including a measure to enhance penalties for people who abuse fentanyl, a dangerous synthetic opioid that can be up to 100 times more powerful than morphine.

Scott also signed a bill that creates property tax exemptions for first responders and their surviving spouses, and another that directs the Florida Department of Transportation to conduct a study on whether the state should implement a system for designating safe school-crossing locations. 

» READ: The Palm Beach Post’s special report, Heroin: Killer of a generation

Here is the full list of bills signed by Scott on Wednesday:

CS/HB 339, Motor Vehicle Service Agreement Companies: This bill requires motor vehicle service agreement companies to maintain $15 million in assets. Takes effect July 1.

HB 371, Assistive Technology Devices: This bill allows students to take home their assistive technology devices. Takes effect July 1.

CS/CS/HB 377, Limitations on Actions other than for the Recovery of Real Property: This bill clarifies the statute of repose by defining the date of completion for certain contracted services. Takes effect July 1.

HB 379, Underground Facilities: This bill expands the reporting requirements for underground facility operators. Takes effect July 1.

CS/CS/HB 397, Public Records/ Victim of Alleged Sexual Harassment/ Identifying Information: This bill creates a public records exemption for identifying information of state employees who file sexual harassment complaints. Took effect upon signing. 

CS/CS/HB 421, Public Housing Authority Insurance: This bill allows a business owned by public housing authorities to join a self-insurance fund. Takes effect July 1.

CS/CS/HB 455, Tax Exemptions for First Responders and Surviving Spouses: This bill creates a property tax exemption for first responders permanently disabled in the line of duty and the surviving spouse of first responders killed in the line of duty. Took effect upon signing. 

CS/CS/HB 465, Firefighters: This bill creates a Lifetime Firefighter designation for firefighters and volunteer firefighters. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/HB 477, Controlled Substances: This bill creates new and enhances current penalties relating to synthetic opioid drugs, including fentanyl and its derivatives. Takes effect Oct. 1. 

CS/HB 493, Enhanced Safety for School Crossings: This bill directs the Florida Department of Transportation to study the viability and cost of creating a statewide system for the designation of safe school crossing locations. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/CS/HB 501, Public Records and Meetings/ Information Technology/Postsecondary Education Institutions: This bill protects IT security information at public colleges and universities. Took effect upon signing. 

CS/HB 505, Florida Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act: This bill removes a substance with a medically accepted use from the Florida Comprehensive Drug Abuse Prevention and Control Act. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/CS/HB 573, Water Protection and Sustainability: This bill creates the “Heartland Headwaters Protection and Sustainability Act” and requires the Polk County Regional Water Cooperative to provide an annual report on local projects and conservation efforts. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/HB 577, Discount Plan Organizations: This bill streamlines the regulation of Discount Plans and Discount Plan Organizations. Took effect upon signing. Took effect upon signing. 

CS/CS/HB 599, Public Works Projects: This bill prevents state and local governments from imposing specified restrictions on contracts for public works projects funded 50 percent or more by the state. Takes effect July 1. 

HB 1203, Public Records/ Department of Corrections/ Health Information: This bill enhances the protections of inmate health and medical information. Takes effect July 1. 

HB 7091, Probation and Community Control: This bill enhances public safety by improving Florida’s community supervision laws. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/SB 164, Certificates of Title for Motor Vehicles: This bill eliminates the fee on car titles issued to remove the name of a deceased co-owner to a surviving spouse. Takes effect July 1. 

SB 256, Florida Center for the Partnerships for Arts Integrated Teaching: This bill saves the Florida Center for the Partnerships for Arts Integrated Teaching from repeal. Takes effect June 30. 

CS/SB 312, Eyewitness Identification: This bill provides guidelines for law enforcement agencies to follow when conducting photo and in-person lineups. Takes effect Oct. 1. 

CS/CS/SB 368, Transportation Facility Designations: This bill makes 50 honorary designations of Florida transportation facilities, including “Lieutenant Debra Clayton Memorial Highway” and “First Class Deputy Normal Lewis Memorial Highway.” Takes effect July 1. 

CS/SB 396, Student Loan Debt: This bill requires colleges and universities to provide students with financial information about their student loans annually. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/CS/CS/SB 398, Estoppel Certificates: This bill provides fee caps and revises requirements for the issuance and expiration of estoppel certificates for condominium, cooperative, and homeowners’ associations. Takes effect July 1.

CS/CS/SB 800, Medication Synchronization: This bill requires health insurers and HMOs to allow patients to align refill dates of prescription medication. Takes effect Jan. 1. 

CS/CS/SB 1018, Pollution: This bill requires public notification within 24 hours of pollution incidents and provides additional resources for pollution prevention and recovery. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/SB 1108, Public Records /Firefighters and their Spouses and Children: This bill extends the public record exemption for personal identifying information of firefighters and their spouses and children to former firefighters, their spouses and children. Takes effect Oct. 1. 

CS/SB 1634, Residential Elevators: This bill enhances the safety standards of residential elevators. Takes effect July 1. 

CS/CS/SB 1672, Tampa Bay Area Regional Transit Authority: This bill renames the organization, streamlines its structure, and changes its mission to focus on regional transit challenges and opportunities in the Tampa Bay area. Takes effect July 1.


Reader Comments ...


Next Up in Local

Max Born’s identity: Google honors Nobel Prize-winning physicist who escaped Nazis
Max Born’s identity: Google honors Nobel Prize-winning physicist who escaped Nazis

In honor of what would have been German physicist Max Born’s 135th birthday, the Google Doodle team put together a colorful illustration for the search engine’s home page. Born is remembered for his major contributions to quantum mechanics, a field of study that has led to the invention of computers, lasers, medical imaging...
‘One-of-a-kind’ FAU-Max Planck program creates undergrad opportunities
‘One-of-a-kind’ FAU-Max Planck program creates undergrad opportunities

At a university where undergraduates as young as 14 already are engaged in studies on cancer, opioid addiction and neurological disorders, Florida Atlantic University soon will expand its research capabilities through a one-of-a-kind partnership. The Boca Raton-based school on Monday announced the FAU-Max Planck Honors Program, an undergraduate opportunity...
Wendy’s out, this national chain in at Tequesta shopping center
Wendy’s out, this national chain in at Tequesta shopping center

Coffee  and such is expected to start being served by Christmas at the new Dunkin’ Donuts being built in Tequesta’s Countyline Plaza.  The building -- plans call for a drive-through window — is at the southwest corner of Countyline Road and U.S. 1. The new Dunkin’s is in the former Wendy’s restaurant, which closed...
Palm Beach Co. gasoline average dips 2 cents from a week ago
Palm Beach Co. gasoline average dips 2 cents from a week ago

Gasoline prices have fallen for the last five weeks, and this past week Palm Beach County’s average dipped another 2 cents per gallon. The downward trend is expected to continue this week. Monday, Palm Beach County’s average for a gallon of regular stood at $2.53. Florida’s average was $2.40, down 3 cents from a week ago, according...
Girl has blunt message for Aetna after brain surgery coverage denied
Girl has blunt message for Aetna after brain surgery coverage denied

A New York teenager had strong words when her parents’ insurance company denied her coverage for minimally invasive brain surgery that could end the seizures that have plagued her since she was 9. The surgery for Cara Pressman, 15, was rejected by Aetna six weeks ago, CNN reported. She had been scheduled to have laser ablation surgery...
More Stories