Amendment Threatens to Squelch Florida Texting Ban

Posted on April 30, 2013

No sooner do we bring you word of the likelihood of a texting and driving ban in the state of Florida than one simple action place the entire matter in jeopardy.  In the course of a day, proponents of the measure have gone from guarded optimism to outright worry.

That’s because the Florida House today elected to amend the bill that was to be voted upon.  A Representative from Miami introduced the amendment over concerns that police would have too great of access to a driver’s cellphone records.  The amendment therefore limited that access to only those situations where an injurious or fatal crash took place.

The bill now won’t be voted on by the House until at least tomorrow.  But the big worry is that there now won’t be time for a final decision to be made by the time the current legislative session draws to a close.  That’s because even though the Senate previously approved the bill unanimously, they will now have to vote anew thanks to the House amendment.

The Senate sponsor of the bill voiced suspicion over the timing of the amendment, seeing as how the matter has been on the docket for a couple weeks.  Opponents of the amendment argued that it was simply unnecessary, as traffic tickets wouldn’t entail a subpoena.  A first-time offender is, after all, only expected to pay $30.

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