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Constitution Revision Commission chairman outlines rule-making plans

The chair of the Constitution Revision Commission has told commissioners an internal “working group” will finalize the body’s operating rules by early June.

Carlos Beruff, who leads the panel charged with reviewing and suggesting rewrites to the state’s governing document, said in a Wednesday memo that several members will form a committee and “hold noticed and open meetings to deliberate the proposed rules.”

The commission held another public hearing Wednesday night on the Florida A&M University campus in Tallahassee.

Critics, including the League of Women Voters of Florida, have complained that the commission is holding hearings without having adopted final rules since its March 20 organization meeting.

“None of us can have confidence in the work of the CRC without having rules to guide the Commission’s work and assure the public that this will be an effort worthy of respect,” LWVF President Pamela Goodman said in a recent letter to Beruff.

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Beruff said that the rules working group will include Tim Cerio and Brecht Heuchan, selected by Gov. Rick Scott; Don Gaetz and Carolyn Timmann, selected by Senate President Joe Negron; state Sen. Tom Lee and Rich Newsome, selected by House Speaker Richard Corcoran; and Arthenia Joyner and Roberto Martinez, selected by Chief Justice Jorge Labarga.

“We will vote on the proposed rules, and on all amendments, at a full commission meeting to be held in early June,” Beruff wrote.

The draft rules raised hackles among good government groups because they allow any two commissioners to meet out of the “sunshine.”

Written By

Jim Rosica is the Tallahassee-based Senior Editor for Florida Politics. He previously was the Tampa Tribune’s statehouse reporter. Before that, he covered three legislative sessions in Florida for The Associated Press. Jim graduated from law school in 2009 after spending nearly a decade covering courts for the Tallahassee Democrat, including reporting on the 2000 presidential recount. He can be reached at jim@floridapolitics.com.

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