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The most stressful 60 days of the year are finally over: a recap of Florida’s legislative session

Every year Florida’s State House and Senate meet for 60 days to do a majority of the year’s legislating. As always, the 2024 session was eventful from all sides.
+Florida%E2%80%99s+State+Senators+begin+their+last+day+in+session+on+Mar.+8+2024.+They+voted+seven+new+bills+into+law%2C+gave+three+bills+a+final+hearing+and+gave+three+return+messages.+
Photo provided by: The New York Times
Florida’s State Senators begin their last day in session on Mar. 8 2024. They voted seven new bills into law, gave three bills a final hearing and gave three return messages.

Mar. 8 marked the end of Florida’s legislative session, and the last sixty days have been nothing if not eventful. As final meetings are adjourned and representatives head home, the bills they voted on will stay. 

The most talked about bills this session were: HB3, a bill that requires parental permission for those under 16 to be on social media and completely bans those 13 and under, HB49, a bill that removes child labor law stipulations from 16 and 17-year-olds and SB1492, a bill which prohibits local governments from requiring protections for laborers under extreme heat warnings. 

“[HB49] is stupid because 16 and 17-year-olds still have stuff like school and extracurriculars which they’re tired after,” sophomore Lucy Johnson said. “They’re still children, they shouldn’t have to work the same as adults.” 

Another notable bill was HB1365, a bill that would ban people from sleeping on public property without a permit. During a committee hearing examples of private property included park benches, sidewalks and county or city-owned fields. As homelessness continues to rise in the state of Florida, the bill leaves many questions as to what exactly will happen to these people. 

“This is definitely just [the Florida government] trying to make their homeless population appear much lower in the laziest way possible,” senior Niko Huddleson said. “Are they going to provide homes for the homeless people the bill affects? What do they expect them to do?” 

The bill that received arguably the most public bipartisan backlash was HB49, Representative Linda Chaney’s child labor bill. Despite very clear public dissension to the bill, it passed the House with a vote of 80-35. 

“I personally don’t like HB49 because the bill makes sure 16 and 17-year-olds don’t get breaks on top of longer hours,” sophomore Izumi Hoenig said. “Students do not need to be working more than 30 hours a week, it’s hard enough having homework and missing assignments as well as a job regardless of the hours, giving students more work just exploits their labor while making their lives more difficult.”  

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Madalyn Propst
Madalyn Propst, Multi-Media Editor
Madalyn Propst is a senior, and the multimedia editor for 2023-2024, she is heavily involved in the school's chorus, and the Florida Democratic Party. She plans on double majoring in political and computer science in the fall.
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