José Javier Rodríguez wants amendment proposals limited to a single issue

José Javier Rodríguez and Anna Eskamani
It's not the first time Rodríguez has tackled the issue.

Democratic state Sen. José Javier Rodríguez has filed a resolution (SJR 396) requiring the Taxation and Budget Reform Commission (TBRC) to limit proposed amendments to the state constitution to a single issue.

That follows a separate resolution from Rodríguez (SJR 176) that would similarly limit the Constitution Revision Commission (CRC).

Both bodies meet every two decades to debate and propose potential amendments to the state constitution. Those amendments can then appear on the general election ballot and require 60 percent approval from Floridians in order to pass.

The TBRC last met in 2008, and is next scheduled to convene in 2028. The CRC, meanwhile, met in 2018 and voted to place multiple amendments on the 2018 ballot.

But some of those CRC amendments faced criticism for bundling multiple, unrelated issues into one measure.

For instance, Amendment 6 adopted a version of “Marsy’s Law.” That measure aimed to increase rights for crime victims in the state of Florida by, for instance, allowing victims to give an impact statement during a trial or receive notification that an attacker was released from prison.

But Amendment 6 also contained a provision increasing the retirement age for judges to 75.

Voters had to decide on a take-it-or-leave-it approach, either supporting the full amendment or nothing at all.

Similarly, Amendment 9 called for the state to ban offshore drilling. It also banned vaping at indoor workplaces.

What do those items have to do with one another? Not much, but if voters wanted to crack down on just one of those two, they were stuck deciding on both together.

The Rodríguez resolutions would seek to stop that going forward. But it’s not the first time Rodríguez has tackled the issue.

The Senator introduced similar resolutions during the 2019 Session targeting both the TBRC and the CRC.

His CRC resolution failed to clear a single committee. The resolution targeting the TBRC had far more success, advancing through three committees and earning unanimous approval on the Senate floor. But the House declined to even hold a vote on the measure.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected].


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