County voter turn out in
general elections has dropped from a high of
84% in 1980 to 74% in 2000. Supervisor of Elections, Kathy Dent, is calling
for more volunteers due to increased demand caused by redistricting.
* Referendum to lower class size to go on
Supervisor of Elections to mail new voter registration
card to all voters.
(SARASOTA, FL, August 1, 2002) – Kathy Dent, Supervisor
of Elections, will soon be mailing a new Voter Registration ID Card to all
registered voters in Sarasota County. The mailing will include an
opportunity to update voter signature and a Voter Information Guide
answering many questions regarding registration and voting.
Because of the redistricting process, all voters are
urged to check their new voter ID card for changes in precinct number,
polling location, and districts.
Any voter who has not received the new card 20 days prior
to the election (August 21, 2002) should call Voter Services at 861-8600.
Gov. Bush opens up filing for county judgeship
Governor Jeb Bush has now, by Executive Order #02-214, called a Special
Election to fill the vacancy in the County Judgeship, Group 2, created by
the resignation of Judge Preston DeVilbiss, Jr. The special election will be
held on September 10, 2002 in conjunction with the Primary Election and the
Sarasota County Special Charter Amendment Election. The qualifying period
will run from 8 A.M. Monday, August 19, 2002 through Noon, Tuesday, August
20, 2002. The Secretary of State also has now issued the required statutory
notice to be published regarding this election.
After request by this office, the Division of Elections has determined that
any individual, who previously qualified, will be able to qualify during
this new qualifying period without paying an additional fee. Candidates
electing to qualify by the Alternative Petition Method after filing the
Alternative Method Affidavit must collect 555 valid petitions which must be
submitted to my office no later than 5 P.M. on August 15, 2002.
This office had requested a binding opinion from the Division of Elections
because of the remaining unanswered questions with respect to the current
situation. Could the scheduled September Primary with the July
qualifications fill this vacancy because circuit and county judgeships can
only qualify in May by statute? Therefore, to address this dilemma, the
State has determined to use the special election provisions to fill this
vacancy and overcome the statutory qualifying period required for May.
This also now solves the problem of notice and opportunity for others to
join the race and achieve the Governor’s desire to have an election rather
than fill the position by appointment.
As a result of this special qualifying period, absentee ballots will not be
mailed until August 23 or 24. In-office absentee voting on the touch screen
system will also be delayed until August 26, 2002 following the Logic and
on August 23, 2002.
Sarasota County Supervisor of Elections Action Alert
(SARASOTA, FL, August 2, 2002) – The registration deadline is
approaching for the September 10 Primary Election and Sarasota County
Special Charter Referendum. Residents who are registered to vote in Sarasota
County by Monday, August 12 will be eligible to vote in this election.
August 12 is also the deadline for changing political party affiliation for
this year’s primary.
All voters will have the opportunity to vote in Judicial, School Board,
Charter Review Board, and Hospital Board races along with six (6) Sarasota
County Charter Amendments. There will be both Democratic and Republican
party candidates for the 13th Congressional District and State races.
Supervisor of Elections, Kathy Dent, recommends that voters make sure their
voter registration information is current with her office. If a voter has
moved or changed names since the last election, this information should be
submitted to the Supervisor of Elections, PO Box 4194, Sarasota, FL
Florida Voter Registration Application forms are available at both
Supervisor of Elections offices, city halls, county libraries, county
offices, social service agencies, at many area banks or by calling 861-8600.
David Mills, Republican, to seek re-election
for Sarasota County Commissioner.
Assistant State Attorney, Charlie Roberts, to
run for position as circuit judge.
Assistant Public Defender Adam Tebrugge will run
for circuit judge.
John Hill, (R), Candice McElyea (D), Jan Schneider,
(D), Katherine Harris, (R), Chester Flake (R), Charles McKenzie Jr.,
seek the U.S. Senate seat for Sarasota, Manatee, Desoto County.
Sarasota County has around 162,000 registered
Republicans and 69,000 registered Democrats.
Do you want to give feedback to the City of
Sarasota with their new survey?
Legislation that passed in the 2002 regular session of the Florida
- Prohibit anyone over 18 from holding parties at which alcoholic
beverages or drugs are possessed or consumed by minors.
- Permit culinary school students ages 18 to 21 to taste small amounts of
wine as part of their classes.
- Require motorists with two drunken driving convictions to install a
device that won't let start their cars unless they pass a breath test for
- Permit farmers to sue for up to three times the value of land, crops,
agricultural building or equipment damaged by vandalism.
- Allow the state to chop down healthy citrus trees within 1,900 feet of
those infected with canker.
- Bar employers from requiring farm workers to buy work equipment.
- Create a new license plate to help pay for whale research,
rehabilitation and education programs.
- Require anyone convicted of intentionally torturing or killing an
animal to attend anger management classes.
- Require racing programs at dog tracks to include information about
adopting retired greyhounds and expand gambling at the tracks' card rooms.
- Make it a crime, punishable by up to 60 days in jail and a $500 fine,
to deny admittance of a seizure-response dog, used by people with epilepsy
and other seizure disorders, to a public facility. ^---
- Set up an arbitration system for disputes between cities and counties
and billboard owners.
- Incorporate federal tax law changes, including cuts to stimulate
business, into Florida's corporate income tax system.
- Require shoppers who sue after slipping on a banana or other substance
at a store to prove management left it there too long, reversing a court
decision that shifted the burden of proof to defendants.
- Absolve owners of electric shopping carts from responsibility for
- Eliminate some oversight of foster children nearing adulthood and
provide them with financial help, including money for college. ^---
- Let the Public Service Commission raise rates for local telephone
service in exchange for lowering access fees they charge to long-distance
- Outlaw door-to-door sales of mortgages based on a homeowner's equity
rather than income, which poses a danger of falling into deeper debt.
- Prohibit merchants from printing more than the last five digits of
credit card account numbers and expiration dates on receipts.
- Merge two state-created insurance pools for homeowners in high-risk
areas and cap a rate increase for customers with windstorm coverage at 10
CRIME & PUNISHMENT
- No longer require prosecutors to prove that a person found in
possession of a controlled substance knew that it was an illegal drug to get
- Increase the maximum penalty from 60 days in jail to five years in
prison for prostitution.
- Restore Florida's "three strikes" law requiring longer prison terms for
repeat offenders, which had been declared unconstitutional.
- Make confidential any information that victims disclose to trained
volunteers at rape crisis centers.
- Require HIV testing of prison inmates before they are released and, if
positive, the notification of local health officials.
- Impose fines of at least $250 and on people convicted of placing
graffiti on buildings, walls or other structures and require them to perform
community service. ^---
- Increase scratch-off Florida Lottery prizes as an incentive to increase
sales and raise more money for education.
- Prohibit loitering within 500 feet of a school from an hour before
school starts until an hour after school ends with exceptions for people who
live or work in that area and for protests. ^---
- Allow bonding of up to $100 million to buy land for the Everglades
- Permit challenges of proposed developments only by affected citizens or
environmental groups with 25 or more members in the county involved, ending
a 30-year right of any citizen to appeal.
- Require local governments to include schools in growth management
- Reapportion Florida's congressional districts, adding two more because
of population growth to bring the total to 25.
- Reapportion the 40-member Florida Senate and 120-member Florida House
to account for population changes.
- Increase benefits for the survivors of police and firefighters killed
on the job and extend free tuition at state universities to their children.
- Create a state program to recruit and retain nurses and help them pay
off their student loans.
- Let the public-private corporation that provides health insurance for
poor children keep some money in reserve.
- Expand Medicaid lung transplant coverage, now limited to children, to
- Create a specialty license tag to help finance research into breast
- Bar local governments from restricting the use of hand-held cell phones
by motorists and order a study of possible state regulation.
- Make off-track drag racing a crime instead of a traffic offense with
fines up to $500, 60 days in jail and a 1-year license suspension for first
- Allow registered nurse practitioners and physicians assistants at
veterans' medical facilities to certify people are disabled so they can get
handicapped parking permits. ^---
- Let homeowners fly the U.S. flag in a respectful manner regardless of
any rules or requirements of homeowner and condominium associations.
- Require school children, unless exempted by parents, to recite a
portion of the Declaration of Independence daily during the last week of
September, to be called Celebrate Freedom Week.
- Grant diplomas to Korean War veterans who left high school to join the
military as existing law does for World War II vets. ^---
- Put a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot that
would require a two-thirds vote in each house for the Legislature to close
public records instead of a simple majority. ^---
- Make it a second-degree felony, punishable by up to 15 years in prison,
for sports agents to give false information, make false representations or
- Create a golf license tag with the proceeds going to youth golf
- Put a proposed constitutional amendment on the November ballot to
create a committee that would review and possibly eliminate sales tax
exemptions although the Legislature could override the panel's decisions.
- Increase the property tax exemption for certain disabled military
veterans from $500 to $5,000.
- Place on the November ballot a proposed constitutional amendment that
would give homeowners an exemption from property tax for the value of an
addition for an elderly parent or grandparent or for 20 percent of total
assessed value, whichever is less. ^---
TERRORISM & SECURITY
- Make it a crime to knowingly sell, make or deliver a forged, stolen or
counterfeit driver license.
- Increase the maximum penalty from five to 15 years for making false
reports about bombs or any other weapon of mass destruction.
- Shorten the expiration time for driver licenses held by foreign
nationals to four years or when their green cards or other identity papers
expire, instead of six years.
- Provide state-paid college educations for the children of Floridians
who die in Operation Enduring Freedom, the nation's war against terrorism.
- Expand the use of transportation and economic development grants to
beef up security at Florida's 14 seaports.
- Safeguard hospitals and doctors from lawsuits during a public health
- Deny public access to the blueprints of government buildings.
- Let Florida National Guard members pay in-state tuition if they lost
residency by leaving the state for active duty - named the Sgt. Larry Bowman
Act for a guardsman who moved to New York and was killed in World Trade
Center attack. ^---
- Authorize the Florida High-Speed Rail Authority to contract the design,
construction and operation of a high-speed rail system. ^----
- Require counties to install equipment to accommodate disabled people at
- Require the selection of jurors from voting registration instead of
driver license lists.