Paul Renner restructures House panels, strengthens emphasis on infrastructure, school choice
It's Paul Renner's moment. Image via Colin Hackley.

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Gone is the Pandemics & Public Emergencies Committee. And say hello to the Infrastructure Strategies Committee.

In another update from House Speaker-designate Paul Renner, the Palm Coast Republican is out with the committee structure for the new Legislative Term.

Renner’s outline calls for nine main committees and 23 subcommittees, including the consolidation, elimination and restructuring of several panels. Gone is the Pandemics & Public Emergencies Committee, and say hello to the Infrastructure Strategies Committee.

With the Legislature’s Organization Session coming Tuesday, Renner has been rolling out his structural vision for the House this week, including leadership announcements and proposed rule changes. The latest announcements come Friday, four days ahead of the organizational session.

The new Infrastructure Strategies Committee will have three subcommittees, the Agriculture, Conservation & Resiliency Subcommittee, the Transportation & Modals Subcommittee, and the Water Quality, Supply & Treatment Subcommittee.

“The Infrastructure Strategies Committee considers matters related to planning for Florida’s growth, including transportation, water, flood resilience, land acquisition, and infrastructure planning,” according to a House memo.

“The committee also considers matters related to Florida’s agriculture and citrus industries, conservation of natural resources, fish and wildlife issues, water quality and supply, and transportation services.”

Among other changes, Public Integrity and Elections matters have also been merged into the State Affairs Committee, and will no longer be a separate slice of PIE. Renner also chose to eliminate the pandemic-era Pandemics & Public Emergencies Committee, which helped craft Gov. Ron DeSantis’ vision for bans on vaccine passports and lockdown policies.

The Appropriations Committee, in charge of writing the state’s the House’s proposed budget for the coming fiscal year, will maintain its seven subcommittees. The Commerce Committee will retain three committees, but the Tourism, Infrastructure & Energy Subcommittee will be replaced with a Energy, Communications & Cybersecurity Subcommittee and economic development has been elevated to a core issue alongside regulatory reform on a third subcommittee.

Post-secondary education and workforce development have also been consolidated into one subcommittee within the Education & Employment Committee. With the additional space, Renner has created an Education Quality Subcommittee and a Choice & Innovation Subcommittee.

“The subcommittee examines policies and programs related to developing and transforming school readiness, voluntary prekindergarten, school choice, educator preparation, job training and workforce education programs to meet the emerging needs of Florida’s students,” the memo says of the Choice & Innovation Subcommittee.

Renner is also giving House members until Nov. 30 to submit their committee preferences for the coming year. Come next summer, Runner will reshuffle assignments.

Renner announced key members of his leadership team this week. And earlier Friday, he announced his proposed rule changes, including the elimination of the requirement for appropriations to be filed as individual bills and be heard in committee.

Renzo Downey

Renzo Downey covers state government for Florida Politics. After graduating from Northwestern University in 2019, Renzo began his reporting career in the Lone Star State, covering state government for the Austin American-Statesman. Shoot Renzo an email at [email protected] and follow him on Twitter @RenzoDowney.


2 comments

  • Chris

    November 19, 2022 at 1:14 pm

    With the Rs in total domination of the Legislature, their appears no more need to place appropriations into individual bills anymore. What a shameless money-grab. Hold onto your wallets, everybody.

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