BOCC set to consider public speaking ordinance

Published: Thursday, October 17, 2013 at 09:58 AM.

There was no state law or constitutional guarantee of the public’s right to speak before a public board or commission votes on a specific issue.

The remedy, the court ruled, would be a change in law.

Beginning in 2011, State Sen. Joe Negron introduced a bill to correct that lack of “right to speak” and in 2013 Negron’s bill, including provisions in a Florida House of Representative companion, was overwhelmingly passed.

That law authorizes a board or commission to adopt “reasonable” rules to ensure orderly conduct of the meeting, but prohibits a commission or board from denying public comment on specific issues before the board during that session.

“That is a monumental shift in state law,” Novak said.

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