Connect with us

Headlines

Gov. Scott signs 2 trade secret bills into law

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, on Wednesday, signed two bills into law that deal with trade secrets. Both bills were sponsored by Naples Republican Sen. Garrett Richter.

SB 180  expands the definition of “trade secret” to expressly include financial information under the definition. And SB 182, a companion bill,  protects financial information deemed to be a trade secret from public disclosure, thus creating an exemption to public records laws.

SB 182 expands exemptions to public meetings requirements, as well, when “trade secrets” are discussed.

SB 182 also defines certain financial information submitted to cities and counties confidential and exempt from public disclosure, which would require more redacting of those documents in the case of a public records request.

SB 182 will protect the trade secrets of businesses, even as one Senate committee anticipated the need for “state agencies to interpret” what constituted a trade secret … a scenario which, given the inherent subjectivity of language, could lead to litigation down the road relative to this law.

Governmental agencies will be compelled to balance this trade secret exemption against the general policy that “all state, county, and municipal records shall be open for personal inspection by any person.” As well, the definition of what a trade secret is can differ even among companies in the same sector, adding another layer of interpretative challenge.

Written By

A.G. Gancarski has been a working journalist for over two decades. Gancarski has been a correspondent for FloridaPolitics.com since 2014. In 2018, he was a finalist for an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies "best political column." He can be reached at a.g.gancarski@gmail.com.

Sign up for Sunburn

Receive our team's agenda-setting morning read of what's hot in Florida politics. Delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday.

Florida Politics is a statewide, new media platform covering campaigns, elections, government, policy, and lobbying in Florida. This platform and all of its content are owned by Extensive Enterprises Media.

Publisher: Peter Schorsch

Contributors & reporters: Phil Ammann, Renzo Downey, Rick Flagg, A.G. Gancarski, Joe Henderson, Janelle Irwin, Jacob Ogles, Scott Powers, Bob Sparks, Andrew Wilson.
Email: Peter@FloridaPolitics.com
Phone: (727) 642-3162
Address: 204 37th Avenue North #182
St. Petersburg, Florida 33704

Connect
Sign up for Sunburn

Receive our team's agenda-setting morning read of what's hot in Florida politics. Delivered straight to your inbox Monday through Friday.