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The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

E-mails, phone calls flood into Governor's office on elections bill, SunRail

With the deadline approaching for Gov. Rick Scott to veto or sign into law a rewrite of Florida elections law, e-mails and phone calls on the topic are coming in by the thousands to the governor's office. More than 15,400 e-mails have been sent to Scott on the issue, with more than 6,200 coming in between May 6 and 12. The majority of those,  5,587, oppose HB 1355, which would shorten the early voting period, ban some people from changing their addresses at polling places and make it more difficult for third-party groups to register voters.

"Constituents feel these laws need to be made easier, not harder for the voter. Feel that it restricts voting rights and is anti-democracy," say notes on a report provided by the governor's office that log the correspondence.

The report also shows Scott in the past week has received more than 1,200 e-mails, phone calls and letters on SunRail, with opponents of the Central Florida commuter rail project accounting for a little more than half of those communications.

The third most frequently raised topic: SB 408, the insurance bill the governor signed into law on Tuesday. He received nearly 400 e-mails, phone calls and letters on the legislation from May 6 through 12, which nearly every one of them opposing the measure.

Also of note: Dozens of citrus farmers are lobbying the governor to veto SB 2122, which makes changes to the Florida Citrus Commission. They say they should have had more involvement in crafting the legislation, which they say will be "severely detrimental" to the citrus industry, according to the governor's office report.

Several dozen calls, e-mails and letters have also been delivered on immigration reform, with most constituents saying they support a requirement for employers to use E-Verify to check the immigration status of potential hires. "Many urge the Governor to call a special session to address immigration issues," reads the report. "Those in opposition are mostly farmers and feel we need a viable guest worker program before we reform immigration law."

 

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 17, 2011 8:02pm]

    

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