Tag Archives: Amendment 9

Implementing Amendment 9: Prohibits Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling; Prohibits Vaping in Enclosed Indoors Workplaces 

~2018 Constitutional Amendments, Florida Division of Elections: https://floridaelectionwatch.gov/Amendments
~2018 Amendments, Florida Division of Elections, Amd. 9 Results by County: https://floridaelectionwatch.gov/ContestResultsByCounty/900009
~Ballotpedia Amendment 9 2018: https://ballotpedia.org/Florida_Amendment_9,_Ban_Offshore_Oil_and_Gas_Drilling_and_Ban_Vaping_in_Enclosed_Indoor_Workplaces_Amendment_(2018)

For me, the best thing about Election Day 2018 was the passage of Constitutional  Amendment 9. But that will not be the end of it. Now it is the job of the state legislature to implement the amendment and for us to keep watch that they do.

Hmmm?

Implement?

What does that mean?

Basically, this means that the language that makes up the ballot amendment must be put into the Florida Constitution and “implemented,” or fulfilled.  To be “implemented” the ballot language that composes the amendment must be inserted and followed.

Amendment 9 was made up of two parts. During the Constitution Revision Commission process,  I had sponsored Proposal #91 Prohibiting Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling, and Commissioner Lisa Carlton had sponsored Proposal #65 Prohibits Vaping in Enclosed Indoors Workplaces. These two proposals made it through the arduous CRC committee process and then were “bundled” by the CRC Style and Drafting Committee relating as “Clean Air and Clean Water.” Thus on the ballot, married, what were P#91 and P#65 composed a new whole: Amendment 9 ~ Prohibiting Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling; Prohibits Vaping in Enclosed Indoors Workplaces.

As everyone who followed the election knows, the #RoadToTheBallot wasn’t easy, and Amendment 9 was criticized unmercifully by the press, and even went before the Florida Supreme Court. In the end, the court supported the bundling  and the people of Florida did too. The voters read, studied, and decided for themselves, Clean Air and Clean Water in Florida is very, very important. The required 60% passage was exceeded;  the amendment passed by 68.92%!

See how your county voted here: https://floridaelectionwatch.gov/CompareStateToCounty/900009

The people  have spoken and now the state Legislature must do its work and implement the amendment by placing  the ballot language into the Florida Constitution.  See the language that comes off the Florida Division of Elections website below.

Prohibiting Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling will go into Article II and Prohibits Vaping in Enclosed Indoors Workplaces will go into Article X. See a copy of the full Florida Constitution and all its articles here: http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/index.cfm?submenu=3

There have been times in the past,  as with Amendment 1 2014,  Florida’s Water and Land Conservation Initiative, where the state legislature did not follow the intent of the language once it was in the constitution. They interpreted it rather to benefit the state power structure. Some say this is partially because the  language  was vague and a court case was brought to try to clear up the amendment’s interpretation by the state legislature.

https://ballotpedia.org/Florida_Water_and_Land_Conservation_Initiative,_Amendment_1_%282014%29

Thankfully, the language of  both P#91 Prohibiting Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling and  #65 Prohibits Vaping in Enclosed Indoors Workplaces are legally solid, specific,  and should not leave any cracks open to be perverted by the state legislature. Nonetheless, we must keep a very watchful eye, as when it comes to Florida’s Legislature there is always the chance for corruption…

Read this article below to see why….

What do they say? “Power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely….” And who is the most powerful of all? The State Legislature!

New push for offshore drilling as Florida awaits recount results

FLORIDA POLITICS, STAFF REPORTS
November 15, 2018, 4:02 pm
http://floridapolitics.com/archives/281341-offshore-drilling-recount

CRC Commissioner List: http://www.flcrc.gov/Commissioners.html
CRC Web-site: http://www.flcrc.gov/Commissioners.html

Former Florida Supreme Court Justices Against the Environment, Why?

It has been quite an education to serve on Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission.

If you follow my blog, you might recall that during the 2017/18 Commission, I sponsored five public-submitted proposals, all environmental in nature: A Right to a Clean and Healthful Environment; the Department of Environmental Protection as a cabinet position;  Clarifying the Water and Land Legacy; Florida Wildlife Commission/Wildlife Corridors; and No Oil and Gas Drilling in Florida’s Territorial Seas.

Early on in my journey,  with an outcry of controversy from the Associated Industries of Florida, the Florida Chamber, and the Florida Agriculture Coalition, I fought. It was a scathing experience,  I will never forget.

With regard to A Right for a Clean Environment, former Chief Justice of the Florida Supreme Court, Kenneth Bell, was hired along with lawyers from U.S. Sugar Gunster Law Firm to destroy my proposal, which they did.

In the end, only one of my proposals made it to the ballot, supported by all by but one CRC vote that day. That proposal, now an amendment, is “No Oil and Gas Drilling in Florida’s Territorial Seas,” our state waters, ten miles off our west coast and three miles off the east. These waters belong to the people of Florida, not to the federal government.

And now Amendment 9 is under attack from yet another former Supreme Court Justice, Harry Lee Anstead! For me, it is of no consequence that my proposal is bundled with another environmental  proposal.

I think it is repulsive that these men of influence, who raised their hand to represent fairly all the people of Florida now are spending their “golden years” off the bench getting paid by Big Corporate Interests to partake in the carnage of Florida’s environment. Former power and influence should not be allowed to seduce the court.

Shame on you former Supreme Court judges, for getting paid by Big Business, Big Petroleum, Big Tobacco, and Big Gambling  to try to influence the Florida Supreme Court to deny taxpayers of Florida the quiet enjoyment of their properties and the waters we all treasure.

More than  likely we shall know by September 24 if the Florida Supreme Court decides to place CRC Constitutional Revision 9 on the 2018 ballot or not.  In the meanwhile, hang  in there and please keep fighting for Florida’s precious environment.

Gunster, Kenneth Bell: https://gunster.com/staff/attorneys/kenneth-b-bell/

Former Judges: Harry Lee Anstead: https://www.4dca.org/Judges/Former-Judges/Former-Justice-Harry-Lee-Anstead

Links to CRC Lawsuits, Florida Court System

2-15-18 Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Kenneth Bell, and other giants of business fight against A Right to a Clean Environment:http://floridapolitics.com/archives/250218-aif-fight-proposed-constitution-amendment-environmental-protection

8-21-18: Ex Lieutenant Governors and Lawmakers Fight Ballot Proposals http://sunshinestatenews.com/story/ex-lieutenant-governors-and-lawmakers-fight-ballot-proposals

9-14-18 Former Florida Supreme Court Justice Harry Lee Anstead fights against Amd. 9 Prohibiting Offshore Oil and Gas Drilling; Prohibiting Vaping in Indoor Work Places and other constitutional amendments: http:// http://www.tampabay.com/florida-politics/buzz/2018/08/14/heres-another-legal-challenge-for-floridas-constitutional-amendments/

9-5-18 As there have been multiple cases to watch in the court system this article helps to explain: https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.tampabay.com/blogs/gradebook/2018/09/05/whats-at-stake-in-todays-florida-court-hearings-over-amendment-8/%3ftemplate=amp

9-12-18 Good News, Amd. 9 and others going to Supreme Court
http://www.mysuncoast.com/news/three-more-proposed-amendments-going-before-florida-supreme-court/article_54689732-b692-11e8-934b-ff33231f5cb8.html?utm_medium=social&utm_source=email&utm_campaign=user-share