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On tap in The Capital: Tuesday, February 12, 2019

The Florida State Capital

Legislature:

BONDS, RESERVES ON AGENDA: The House Appropriations Committee will receive a presentation about debt, bonding, reserves and other issues that affect the state’s bond ratings. (8:30 a.m., 212 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

JEFFERSON, ORANGE SCHOOLS DISCUSSED: The House Education Committee will receive a presentation about Somerset Academy Jefferson County and a community partnership school at Evans High School in Orange County. (10:30 a.m., Reed Hall, House Office Building, the Capitol.)

HOUSE WADES INTO MARIJUANA DEBATE: The House Health & Human Services Committee will take up a bill (PCB HHS 19-01) that deals with a ban on smoking medical marijuana. Gov. Ron DeSantis has made clear he wants to eliminate the ban, which was included in a 2017 law that carried out a constitutional amendment broadly legalizing medical marijuana. (10:30 a.m., Morris Hall, House Office Building, the Capitol.)

DEMOCRATS TARGET GUN VIOLENCE: Democratic lawmakers will hold a news conference to discuss proposals to address gun violence. Participants are expected to include Sen. Lori Berman, D-Lantana; Sen. Janet Cruz, D-Tampa; Sen. Gary Farmer, D-Fort Lauderdale: House Minority Leader Kionne McGhee, D-Miami; Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando; Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-Orlando; Rep. Margaret Good, D-Sarasota; Rep. Cindy Polo, D-Miramar; and Rep. Tina Polsky, D-Boca Raton. (1 p.m., fourth floor, the Capitol.)

BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH AT ISSUE: The Senate Health and Human Services Appropriations Subcommittee will receive a presentation about biomedical research. (1:30 p.m., 412 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

ARMED TEACHERS DEBATED: The Senate Education Committee will take up a school-safety bill that would allow trained classroom teachers to carry guns as school “guardians.” The bill (SPB 7030) is a follow-up to a safety law the Legislature passed last year after the mass shooting at Broward County’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School that killed 17 people. The law included creating the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program, which allowed guardians --- school personnel whose primary job duties are outside the classroom --- to be armed. A commission also created by the law released a report in early January that recommended allowing teachers to be armed. The Senate bill would carry out that recommendation, which has drawn controversy. (4 p.m., 412 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

JUDICIAL RETIREMENTS ON TABLE: The Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability Committee will take up a bill (SPB 7028) that deals with a newly passed constitutional amendment that raised the mandatory retirement age for judges from 70 to 75. The bill involves revisions to the Florida Retirement System to go along with the retirement-age change. (4 p.m., 301 Senate Office Building, the Capitol.)

MARIJUANA SMOKING BAN TARGETED: The Senate Innovation, Industry and Technology Committee will take up a bill (SB 182), filed by Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, that seeks to eliminate a ban on smoking medical marijuana. Lawmakers in 2017 included a smoking ban in a law that was designed to carry out a constitutional amendment broadly legalizing medical marijuana. But the smoking ban drew a legal challenge, and a Leon County circuit judge ruled that it violated the 2016 constitutional amendment. The state, under former Gov. Rick Scott, appealed the circuit judge’s ruling. Gov. Ron DeSantis, however, has been critical of the smoking ban and has indicated he will drop the appeal if lawmakers do not eliminate the ban. (4 p.m., 110 Senate Office Building, the Capitol.)

ETHICS REFORM CONSIDERED: The House Public Integrity & Ethics Committee will hold a workshop on a bill (HB 1), filed by Rep. Anthony Sabatini, R-Howey-in-the-Hills, that would make a variety of changes to state ethics laws. (4 p.m., 404 House Office Building, the Capitol.)

Also:

USF TRUSTEES MEET: The University of South Florida Board of Trustees will hold a series of committee meetings and a brief meeting of the full board. (Committees start at 8 a.m., with full board at 12:15 p.m., University of South Florida, Marshall Student Center, Tampa.)

REAL ESTATE COMMISSION MEETS: The Florida Real Estate Commission is scheduled to meet in Central Florida. (8:30 a.m., Zora Neale Hurston Building, Suite N901, 400 West Robinson St., Orlando.)

SUWANNEE RIVER WATER BOARD TO MEET: The Suwannee River Water Management District Governing Board is scheduled to meet. (9 a.m., district headquarters, 9225 County Road 49, Live Oak.)

TIMBER INDUSTRY RECOVERY AT ISSUE: The University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences will hold roundtable discussions on the agricultural impact of Hurricane Michael, particularly on the timber industry. (9 a.m., Rivertown Community Center, 19359 Highway 71, Blountstown.)

ST. JOHNS WATER BOARD MEETS: The St. Johns River Water Management District Governing Board is scheduled to hold a Finance, Audit and Administration Committee meeting and a full board meeting. (Committee at 10:30 a.m., followed by full board, University of Central Florida, Wayne Densch Center, 4582 North Orion Blvd., Orlando.)

UNCLAIMED PROPERTY ON TABLE: The Revenue Estimating Conference will take up issues related to unclaimed property. (10;30 a.m., 117 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

JACKSONVILLE COLLEGE TRUSTEES MEET: The Florida State College at Jacksonville Board of Trustees will meet after holding a committee meeting, an executive session and a workshop. (Events start at 10:45 a.m., with full board at 1 p.m., Florida State College at Jacksonville administrative offices, 501 West State St., Jacksonville.)

COURT HEARS MARIJUANA GROWING CASE: The 1st District Court of Appeal will hear arguments in a dispute about whether a Tampa businessman should be able to grow medical marijuana as part of his treatment for cancer. The case pits the Florida Department of Health against Joe Redner, who made his fortune as a strip-club owner. The Department of Health took the case to the appeals court after Leon County Circuit Judge Karen Gievers ruled in April that Redner can grow his own marijuana under a 2016 constitutional amendment that broadly legalized cannabis for medical purposes. Redner’s doctor ordered a juicing treatment that uses live marijuana plants to prevent a relapse of stage 4 lung cancer, according to court documents. But attorneys for the state contend the constitutional amendment does not give people the right to grow their own marijuana and that only licensed businesses, known as medical marijuana treatment centers, are allowed to grow, process and sell marijuana. (2 p.m., 1st District Court of Appeal, 2000 Drayton Dr., Tallahassee.)

RUBIO HOLDS ‘MOBILE’ OFFICE HOURS: Staff members for U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., will hold “mobile” office hours in Pasco and Lake counties. (2 p.m., Hugh Embry Branch Library, 14215 Fourth St., Dade City. Also, 4 p.m., American Legion Post 347, 699 West Lady Lake Blvd., Lady Lake.)

REVENUE CAP AT ISSUE: The Revenue Estimating Conference will take up issues related to a revenue cap. (Tuesday, 4 p.m., 117 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

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