Welcome to the Workers' Compensation Section Home Page. Your Executive Council has created this site in an effort to encourage and facilitate communication and exchange of ideas among the members of our Section. Enjoy!
The purpose of the Workers' Compensation Section is to provide an organization within The Florida Bar open to all members in good standing who have a common interest in workers' compensation law. The Section provides a forum for discussion and exchange of ideas leading to the improvement of individual trial abilities in workers' compensation cases.
Send mail with questions or comments about this web site to:
Martin L. Leibowitz, Esquire
Past Workers' Compensation Section Chair
Post Office Box 47530
Jacksonville, FL 32247-7530
The House Criminal Justice Subcommittee voted 11-2 Thursday to kill a bill that would have repealed Florida's "stand your ground" self-defense law.
"Today our state is a safer place and has a lower crime rate than in 42 years," state Rep. Marti Coley, R-Marianna, said at the start of a five-hour committee hearing. "Our citizens have a right to stand their ground and do not have a duty to retreat."
The 2005 statute provides that law-abiding citizens may use any level of force, including gunfire, when they think their lives are in danger. It was a major factor in the acquittal of George Zimmerman in August for the fatal shooting of teenager Trayvon Martin in Sanford.
A group of mostly black, college-age protestors calling themselves "Dream Defenders" occupied the governor's office lobby and surrounding area on Capitol's first floor for 31 days after the verdict. They demanded a special legislative session be called to amend stand your ground and make other changes in state policies they considered discriminatory. They didn't get a special session, but House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, agreed to a hearing by the criminal-justice panel, which took the unusual step of killing a bill long before the 2014 legislative session.
Usually, bills the leadership doesn't like are allowed to die quietly, never getting a hearing in committee or on the House or Senate floors.
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Bondi, Gaetz, Weatherford go to court to block marijuana initiative
James Call, 11/08/2013 - 05:15 PM
Florida Senate President Don Gaetz, R-Niceville, and House Speaker Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, Friday filed briefs with the Florida Supreme Court to block a proposed medical marijuana initiative from the 2014 ballot.
The two agree with Attorney General Pam Bondi, who last month filed an advisory opinion with the court stating that the proposed ballot language would mislead voters about its scope in permitting the use of cannabis.
On Friday Bondi also filed a brief in support of her earlier request.
Lawyers for Gaetz and Weatherford charge that the constitutional amendment’s writer engaged in “trademark characteristics” of “wordsmithing” -- advantageous but misleading use of language -- with the terms “certain” and “debilitating diseases.” They argued that the amendment’s ballot title and summary violates Florida’s ballot-placement laws in at least three ways:
There’s a bi-partisan push to increase the state’s speed limit from 70 to 75 miles per hour. Sens. Jeff Brandes, R- St. Petersburg, and Jeff Clemens, D-Lake Worth, Tuesday proposed the increase. The last time Florida increased the maximum speed limit was in 1996 when it was set at 70.
“It is time for Florida to review this statute,” said Brandes, chair of the Senate Transportation Committee. “This legislation allows traffic engineers to make the decision to raise the speed limit on a road if they believe it is safe and advisable to do so.”
The current law sets a 70 mph limit on interstates, 65 for highways with a divided median and 60 miles per hour for other roadways managed by the state Department of Transportation.
“Allowing professionals to determine safe speeds based on the engineering standards of individual highways is simply common sense,” said Clemens. “A five mile per hour increase is unlikely to have an impact on road safety, but we’ll let the experts do their job.”
The highest speed limits in the nation are currently in Texas, which allows up to 85 miles per hour, and Utah’s 80 mile per hour limit.
A coalition of liberal groups are calling on conservative think tanks across the country -- including Florida-based groups the James Madison Institute and the Foundation for Government Accountability -- to be more transparent, disclose their donors openly and fall under the same financial reporting as lobbyists.
Liberal advocacy groups Progress Florida and the Center for Media and Democracy released a report Wednesday detailing the affiliation of JMI and FGA with the State Policy Network, a nationwide network of think tanks connected to the American Legislative Exchange Council, a group promoting pro-business legislation in statehouses across the country. The think tanks are part of a corporate agenda to push policies that erode workers’ rights, the report claims.
“These so-called ‘independent’ voices push ALEC’s right-wing agenda regardless of the best interests of Floridians while providing cover that helps insulate ALEC and SPN’s CEO backers against public scrutiny,” the report states.
JMI president Robert McClure admitted sharing ideas with think tanks in other states, but noted JMI was founded in 1987 -- five years before SPN was created. He also firmly held onto the “non-partisan” label for JMI, despite the think tank’s myriad Republican connections -- the chairman of its board is former GOP Florida House Speaker Allen Bense.
“Anyone who knows of or has worked with JMI would read the first few lines of this report and realize that it is full of cherry-picked misinformation and misleading statements,” McClure wrote in an email.
“Because Florida is such a dynamic state, we often share our stories with other think tanks around the country, and one thing is for sure: Each think tank is proud of its home state, and we’re proud that there are organizations like ours looking out for the best interests of their individual states. The fact that we may have similar issues happening in each of our states should not be surprising.”Read Entire Article