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Ethics, Elections and Foreclosures on Sen. Latvala's Agenda


Florida lawmakers have been holding committee meetings for the past three months. So, when the legislative session officially opens Tuesday, leaders will be ready to start moving bills through.

Pinellas County Sen. Jack Latvala, chairman of the ethics and elections committee, said to expect election reform this session, but the first bill he plans to take up is on ethics.

The legislation, (SB2), requires elected officials to get ethics training, limits lawmakers outside employment and  delays when ex-lawmakers can do business with the state.

“We just think it’s important to kind of re-instill people’s confidence in elected officials in Florida,” Latvala said after recording a Florida Matters Show at WUSF last week. “There have been some scandals, there have been some concerns that people have raised. Hopefully the house will take it up and pass it shortly thereafter.”

Latvala also is sponsoring a bill that would allow veterans attending Florida public universities to pay in-state tuition rates. And, he’s also planning a foreclosure bill to expedite foreclosure case backlog in the court system.

“There are still 400,000 foreclosures in the court system in Florida and our homebuilding industry and our real estate industry are not really going to get going until we get those flushed through the system,” Latvala said.

Bobbie O’Brien has been a Reporter/Producer at WUSF since 1991. She reports on general news topics in Florida and the Tampa Bay region.
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