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Appendix

Federal Laws

 

 42 U.S.C. § 1983  provides, in relevant part, that "every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State … subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States … to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress…."

Florida Laws

Florida Constitution Article II, Section 8(c)

“Any public officer or employee who breaches the public trust for private gain…shall be liable to the state for all financial benefits obtained by such actions.” Enforcement of this provision is provided by s. 112.316, F.S.

Fla. Stat. § 257.261 Library Registration and Circulation Records

(1)  All registration and circulation records of every public library, except statistical reports of registration and circulation, are confidential and exempt from the provisions of s. 119.07(1) and from s. 24(a) of Art. I of the State Constitution.

(2)  As used in this section, the term "registration records" includes any information that a library requires a patron to provide in order to become eligible to borrow books and other materials, and the term "circulation records" includes all information that identifies the patrons who borrow particular books and other materials.

(3)(a)  Except in accordance with a proper judicial order, a person may not make known in any manner any information contained in records made confidential and exempt by this section, except as otherwise provided in this section.

(b)  A library or any business operating jointly with the library may, only for the purpose of collecting fines or recovering overdue books, documents, films, or other items or materials owned or otherwise belonging to the library, disclose information made confidential and exempt by this section to the following:

1.  The library patron named in the records;

2.  In the case of a library patron less than 16 years of age, the parent or guardian of that patron named in the records;

3.  Any entity that collects fines on behalf of a library, unless the patron is less than 16 years of age, in which case only information identifying the patron's parent or guardian may be released;

4.  Municipal or county law enforcement officials, unless the patron is 16 years of age, in which case only information identifying the patron's parent or guardian may be released; or

5.  Judicial officials.

(4)  Any person who violates this section commits a misdemeanor of the second degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.

Florida Statute § 768.28 Waiver of Sovereign Immunity in Tort Actions

(1)  In accordance with s. 13, Art. X of the State Constitution, the state, for itself and for its agencies or subdivisions, hereby waives sovereign immunity for liability for torts, but only to the extent specified in this act. Actions at law against the state or any of its agencies or subdivisions to recover damages in tort for money damages against the state or its agencies or subdivisions for injury or loss of property, personal injury, or death caused by the negligent or wrongful act or omission of any employee of the agency or subdivision while acting within the scope of the employee's office or employment under circumstances in which the state or such agency or subdivision, if a private person, would be liable to the claimant, in accordance with the general laws of this state, may be prosecuted subject to the limitations specified in this act. Any such action may be brought in the county where the property in litigation is located or, if the affected agency or subdivision has an office in such county for the transaction of its customary business, where the cause of action accrued…

(2)  As used in this act, "state agencies or subdivisions" include the executive departments, the Legislature, the judicial branch (including public defenders), and the independent establishments of the state, including state university boards of trustees; counties and municipalities; and corporations primarily acting as instrumentalities or agencies of the state, counties, or municipalities, including the Florida Space Authority.

(5)  The state and its agencies and subdivisions shall be liable for tort claims in the same manner and to the same extent as a private individual under like circumstances, but liability shall not include punitive damages or interest for the period before judgment. Neither the state nor its agencies or subdivisions shall be liable to pay a claim or a judgment by any one person which exceeds the sum of $100,000 or any claim or judgment, or portions thereof, which, when totaled with all other claims or judgments paid by the state or its agencies or subdivisions arising out of the same incident or occurrence, exceeds the sum of $200,000. However, a judgment or judgments may be claimed and rendered in excess of these amounts and may be settled and paid pursuant to this act up to $100,000 or $200,000, as the case may be; and that portion of the judgment that exceeds these amounts may be reported to the Legislature, but may be paid in part or in whole only by further act of the Legislature. Notwithstanding the limited waiver of sovereign immunity provided herein, the state or an agency or subdivision thereof may agree, within the limits of insurance coverage provided, to settle a claim made or a judgment rendered against it without further action by the Legislature, but the state or agency or subdivision thereof shall not be deemed to have waived any defense of sovereign immunity or to have increased the limits of its liability as a result of its obtaining insurance coverage for tortious acts in excess of the $100,000 or $200,000 waiver provided above. The limitations of liability set forth in this subsection shall apply to the state and its agencies and subdivisions whether or not the state or its agencies or subdivisions possessed sovereign immunity before July 1, 1974.

(6)(a)  An action may not be instituted on a claim against the state or one of its agencies or subdivisions unless the claimant presents the claim in writing to the appropriate agency, and also, except as to any claim against a municipality or the Florida Space Authority, presents such claim in writing to the Department of Financial Services, within 3 years after such claim accrues and the Department of Financial Services or the appropriate agency denies the claim in writing; except that, if such claim is for contribution pursuant to s. 768.31, it must be so presented within 6 months after the judgment against the tortfeasor seeking contribution has become final by lapse of time for appeal or after appellate review or, if there is no such judgment, within 6 months after the tortfeasor seeking contribution has either discharged the common liability by payment or agreed, while the action is pending against her or him, to discharge the common liability.

(9)(a)  No officer, employee, or agent of the state or of any of its subdivisions shall be held personally liable in tort or named as a party defendant in any action for any injury or damage suffered as a result of any act, event, or omission of action in the scope of her or his employment or function, unless such officer, employee, or agent acted in bad faith or with malicious purpose or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property. However, such officer, employee, or agent shall be considered an adverse witness in a tort action for any injury or damage suffered as a result of any act, event, or omission of action in the scope of her or his employment or function. The exclusive remedy for injury or damage suffered as a result of an act, event, or omission of an officer, employee, or agent of the state or any of its subdivisions or constitutional officers shall be by action against the governmental entity, or the head of such entity in her or his official capacity, or the constitutional officer of which the officer, employee, or agent is an employee, unless such act or omission was committed in bad faith or with malicious purpose or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property. The state or its subdivisions shall not be liable in tort for the acts or omissions of an officer, employee, or agent committed while acting outside the course and scope of her or his employment or committed in bad faith or with malicious purpose or in a manner exhibiting wanton and willful disregard of human rights, safety, or property.

(14)  Every claim against the state or one of its agencies or subdivisions for damages for a negligent or wrongful act or omission pursuant to this section shall be forever barred unless the civil action is commenced by filing a complaint in the court of appropriate jurisdiction within 4 years after such claim accrues; except that an action for contribution must be commenced within the limitations provided in s. 768.31(4), and an action for damages arising from medical malpractice must be commenced within the limitations for such an action in s. 95.11(4). 

Fla. Stat. § 838.022  Official Misconduct

(1)  It is unlawful for a public servant, with corrupt intent to obtain a benefit for any person or to cause harm to another, to:

(a)  Falsify, or cause another person to falsify, any official record or official document…

Fla. Stat. §  97.058  Voter Registration Agencies

(1)  Each voter registration agency must provide each applicant the opportunity to register to vote or to update a voter registration record, at the time the applicant applies for services or assistance from that agency, for renewal of such services or assistance, or for a change of address required with respect to the services or assistance.

(2)  Each voter registration agency, other than a public library, must develop and provide each applicant with a form approved by the department containing all of the following …

(Note: a public library can lose its exemption if it steps into the shoes of a social service agency.)

Florida Attorney General Opinions

 

Especially: 

Number: AGO 2006-36 Date: August 3, 2006

Subject: Sovereign Immunity, nonprofit corporation

Notes that Citrus Memorial Health Foundation, Inc., which leases and operates a hospital owned by the Citrus County Hospital Board, an independent special taxing district, is entitled to sovereign immunity under the provisions of § 768.28. Whether such contracted parties "are agents of the state turns on the degree of control retained or exercised by [a state agency].”

Number: AGO 2002-84 Date: December 17, 2002

Subject: Volunteer designated as code enforcement officer

Notes that AGO 76-188 determined that certain volunteers were agents of the state [and thus covered by § 768.28]. A critical feature of an agency relationship is the right of the principal to control the actions of the agent with regard to the details of the task to be accomplished. An agency relationship is created by consent of the parties and does not require consideration or compensation to the agent. Thus, that opinion concluded that volunteer private institutions acting on behalf of the Department of Health and Rehabilitative Services and subject to its monitoring and control were agents of the State of Florida in the administration of the swine flu vaccine. Compare Op. Att’y Gen. Fla. 86-56 (1986) concluding that volunteers transporting students and equipment to school activities who were not under the direction and control of the school board or the superintendent were not governmental employees or agents for purposes of § 768.28.

imls180.for.panel.jpgMany of these resources and programs are funded under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. Florida's LSTA program is administered by the Department of State's Division of Library and Information Services.