FL House and Senate down on energy choice ballot initiative
In filings to the state Supreme Court late Thursday, both the Florida House and Senate said they oppose the petition-driven ballot initiative that would reform how consumers purchase electricity in Florida.
Attorneys for the House wrote that the initiative would have a “deleterious effect” and they consider this change to the state’s constitution an “abuse of the initiative process.”
They wrote that instead of altering the state’s constitutional language, this proposal essentially aims to legislate by amendment.
“The current initiative proposes to add what essentially is a legislative policy to the Constitution—rather than address a structural or rights feature of the current charter,” they wrote.
Senate President Bill Galvano argued that the initiative violates the single-subject rule found in the state’s constitution, which allows voters to know what an amendment does and how it will affect the Constitution.
He wrote that if passed, the amendment would “dramatically affect” the functions of multiple branches and levels of government, and would force voters to choose among numerous different policy choices.
Galvano also took issue with the ballot summary and language, which he said fails to touch upon the “sweeping effects” it would have. He also added that if passed, the language would require the Legislature to “upend the entire electric utility regulatory framework.”