Daily Legislative Brief from February 6, 2018
Legal & Judicial
SB 822- Relating to Beverage Law
On Tuesday, February 6th, SB 822 by Senator Travis Hutson (R-Palm Coast) was heard before the Senate Committee on Commerce and Tourism and passed by a vote of 4 yeas to 1 yea. AIF’s Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs, Brewster Bevis, stood in support of this bill.
Florida’s “Tied House Evil Law,” s. 561.42, F.S., prohibits a manufacturer or distributor of alcoholic beverages from having a financial interest, directly or indirectly, in the establishment or business of a licensed vendor, and prohibits a manufacturer or distributor from giving gifts, loans, property, or rebates to retail vendors.
The bill a written agreement between a manufacturer or importer of malt beverages and an alcoholic beverage vendor for brand naming rights, including the right to advertise cooperatively from the “tied house evil” prohibitions. The agreement must then be negotiated at arm’s length for no more than fair market value.
SB 822 will move on to the Senate Committee on Rules for its next hearing.
AIF SUPPORTS legislation that removes burdensome regulations on Florida’s businesses.
SB 1304-Relating to Dockless Bicycle Sharing
On Tuesday, February 6th, SB 1304 by Senator Dana Young (R-Tampa) was heard before the Senate Committee on Banking and Insurance and passed by a vote of 8 yeas to 2 nays. AIF’s Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs, Brewster Bevis, stood in support of this bill.
Bicycle sharing is a relatively new venture making its way across the country. Currently, the regulation of bicycle sharing companies is left up to local jurisdictions. This legislation creates uniformity of laws governing the operation of dockless bicycle sharing companies in the state.
SB 1304 will go on to the Senate Committee on Community Affairs to be heard.
AIF supports legislation that implements uniformity of laws across municipal policies that create price competition, promote consumer choice, enhance customer experience, create jobs and remove anti-competitive local regulations.
SB 1168-Relating to Insurance
On Tuesday, February 6th, SB 1168 by Senator Greg Steube (R-Sarasota) was heard before the Senate Committee on Judiciary and passed by a vote of 7 yeas to 3 nays. AIF’s Senior Vice President of State and Federal Affairs, Brewster Bevis, stood in opposition to this bill.
Senator Steube initially offered an amendment that weakened the definition of catastrophic ground cover collapse, which would have thrown Florida’s marketplace back into the sinkhole crisis and repopulated Citizens. However, Senator Perry Thurston (D-Fort Lauderdale) offered a substitute amendment without that language. Ultimately, after the amendatory process ended, the bill was changed in two major ways (1) the provision prohibiting attorney fees from being included in rate was removed and (2) the timeframe in which an assignment of benefit vendor must provide a copy of their agreement to an insurer was shortened from 7 to 5 days. Unfortunately, this represents only nominal improvement, and still fails to address the heart of the AOB problem: no-risk attorney’s fees.
SB 1168 will go on to its next committee stop in the Senate Committee on Rules to be heard.
AIF opposes legislation that does not adequately protect consumers against the abuses of one-way attorney fees, which is the only way to truly fix the assignment of benefits problem.