Pinellas PTA group to host 'Meet Your Legislator' series starting Thursday
The Pinellas County Council of Parent Teacher Associations is hosting a series of "Meet Your Legislator" events for constituents.
The first event will be held 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Largo High, featuring Sen. Jeff Brandes (R - St. Petersburg) and Rep. Chris Latvala (R - Clearwater). Brandes will host another event at North Shore Elementary at 6 p.m. on Oct. 19, and Rep. Ben Diamond (D - St. Petersburg) will speak at Shore Acres Elementary at 6 p.m. on November 28. All events are free and open to the public.
PCCPTA is working to reschedule a date for Rep. Wengay Newton (D - St. Petersburg) who was scheduled to speak at Gulfport Elementary until that event was cancelled due to Hurricane Irma.
"It's something that we do every year," said PCCPTA president Jessica Summers. "It gives our local units and the communities a chance to talk to the local representatives and senators."
Out of all four legislators, Latvala sits on the education committee and Newton is in the PreK-12 appropriations subcommittee.
Summers said legislators will spend the first 20 minutes of the event speaking about their committee assignments and what they hope to accomplish during the upcoming legislative session. Legislators will then take questions from the audience.
It's possible questions surrounding a multi-district lawsuit against a controversial education bill will arise at the event. Pinellas County is one of 14 school districts across the state to sue over the legislation, which districts say unfairly favors charter schools.
Brandes and Latvala voted in favor of the bill. Newton voted against it, and no vote was recorded for Diamond.