CRC - 2017                                                P 6001
       By the Committee on Style and Drafting
       350-00431-17                                          20176001__
    2                             REVISION 1                            
    4         A proposal to amend Section 16 of Article I of the
    5         State Constitution to revise and establish additional
    6         rights of victims of crime; create Section 21 of
    7         Article V of the State Constitution to require a state
    8         court or an administrative law judge to interpret a
    9         state statute or rule de novo in litigation between an
   10         administrative agency and a private party and not
   11         merely defer to the administrative agency’s
   12         interpretation; and amend Section 8 of Article V and
   13         to create a new section in Article XII of the State
   14         Constitution to increase the age after which a justice
   15         or judge may no longer serve in a judicial office.
   17  Be It Proposed by the Constitution Revision Commission of
   18  Florida:
   20         Section 16 of Article I of the State Constitution is
   21  amended to read:
   22                              ARTICLE I                            
   23                        DECLARATION OF RIGHTS                      
   24         SECTION 16. Rights of accused and of victims.—
   25         (a) In all criminal prosecutions the accused shall, upon
   26  demand, be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation,
   27  and shall be furnished a copy of the charges, and shall have the
   28  right to have compulsory process for witnesses, to confront at
   29  trial adverse witnesses, to be heard in person, by counsel or
   30  both, and to have a speedy and public trial by impartial jury in
   31  the county where the crime was committed. If the county is not
   32  known, the indictment or information may charge venue in two or
   33  more counties conjunctively and proof that the crime was
   34  committed in that area shall be sufficient; but before pleading
   35  the accused may elect in which of those counties the trial will
   36  take place. Venue for prosecution of crimes committed beyond the
   37  boundaries of the state shall be fixed by law.
   38         (b) To preserve and protect the right of crime victims to
   39  achieve justice, ensure a meaningful role throughout the
   40  criminal and juvenile justice systems for crime victims, and
   41  ensure that crime victims’ rights and interests are respected
   42  and protected by law in a manner no less vigorous than
   43  protections afforded to criminal defendants and juvenile
   44  delinquents, every victim is entitled to the following rights,
   45  beginning at the time of his or her victimization:
   46         (1)The right to due process and to be treated with
   47  fairness and respect for the victim’s dignity.
   48         (2)The right to be free from intimidation, harassment, and
   49  abuse.
   50         (3)The right, within the judicial process, to be
   51  reasonably protected from the accused and any person acting on
   52  behalf of the accused. However, nothing contained herein is
   53  intended to create a special relationship between the crime
   54  victim and any law enforcement agency or office absent a special
   55  relationship or duty as defined by Florida law.
   56         (4)The right to have the safety and welfare of the victim
   57  and the victim’s family considered when setting bail, including
   58  setting pretrial release conditions that protect the safety and
   59  welfare of the victim and the victim’s family.
   60         (5)The right to prevent the disclosure of information or
   61  records that could be used to locate or harass the victim or the
   62  victim’s family, or which could disclose confidential or
   63  privileged information of the victim.
   64         (6) A victim shall have the following specific rights upon
   65  request:
   66         a. The right to reasonable, accurate, and timely notice of,
   67  and to be present at, all public proceedings involving the
   68  criminal conduct, including, but not limited to, trial, plea,
   69  sentencing, or adjudication, even if the victim will be a
   70  witness at the proceeding, notwithstanding any rule to the
   71  contrary. A victim shall also be provided reasonable, accurate,
   72  and timely notice of any release or escape of the defendant or
   73  delinquent, and any proceeding during which a right of the
   74  victim is implicated.
   75         b. The right to be heard in any public proceeding involving
   76  pretrial or other release from any form of legal constraint,
   77  plea, sentencing, adjudication, or parole, and any proceeding
   78  during which a right of the victim is implicated.
   79         c. The right to confer with the prosecuting attorney
   80  concerning any plea agreements, participation in pretrial
   81  diversion programs, release, restitution, sentencing, or any
   82  other disposition of the case.
   83         d. The right to provide information regarding the impact of
   84  the offender’s conduct on the victim and the victim’s family to
   85  the individual responsible for conducting any presentence
   86  investigation or compiling any presentence investigation report,
   87  and to have any such information considered in any sentencing
   88  recommendations submitted to the court.
   89         e. The right to receive a copy of any presentence report,
   90  and any other report or record relevant to the exercise of a
   91  victim’s right, except for such portions made confidential or
   92  exempt by law.
   93         f. The right to be informed of the conviction, sentence,
   94  adjudication, place and time of incarceration, or other
   95  disposition of the convicted offender, any scheduled release
   96  date of the offender, and the release of or the escape of the
   97  offender from custody.
   98         g. The right to be informed of all postconviction processes
   99  and procedures, to participate in such processes and procedures,
  100  to provide information to the release authority to be considered
  101  before any release decision is made, and to be notified of any
  102  release decision regarding the offender. The parole or early
  103  release authority shall extend the right to be heard to any
  104  person harmed by the offender.
  105         h. The right to be informed of clemency and expungement
  106  procedures, to provide information to the governor, the court,
  107  any clemency board, and other authority in these procedures, and
  108  to have that information considered before a clemency or
  109  expungement decision is made; and to be notified of such
  110  decision in advance of any release of the offender.
  111         (7) The rights of the victim, as provided in subparagraph
  112  (6)a., subparagraph (6)b., or subparagraph (6)c., that apply to
  113  any first appearance proceeding are satisfied by a reasonable
  114  attempt by the appropriate agency to notify the victim and
  115  convey the victim’s views to the court.
  116         (8) The right to the prompt return of the victim’s property
  117  when no longer needed as evidence in the case.
  118         (9) The right to full and timely restitution in every case
  119  and from each convicted offender for all losses suffered, both
  120  directly and indirectly, by the victim as a result of the
  121  criminal conduct.
  122         (10) The right to proceedings free from unreasonable delay,
  123  and to a prompt and final conclusion of the case and any related
  124  postjudgment proceedings.
  125         a. The state attorney may file a good faith demand for a
  126  speedy trial and the trial court shall hold a calendar call,
  127  with notice, within fifteen days of the filing demand, to
  128  schedule a trial to commence at a date at least five days but no
  129  more than sixty days after the date of the calendar call unless
  130  the trial judge enters an order with specific findings of fact
  131  justifying a trial date more than sixty days after the calendar
  132  call.
  133         b. All state-level appeals and collateral attacks on any
  134  judgment must be complete within two years from the date of
  135  appeal in non-capital cases and five years in capital cases,
  136  unless a court enters an order with specific findings as to why
  137  the court was unable to comply with this subparagraph and the
  138  circumstances causing the delay. Each year, the chief judge of
  139  any district court of appeal or the chief justice of the supreme
  140  court shall report on a case-by-case basis to the speaker of the
  141  house of representatives and the president of the senate all
  142  cases where the court entered an order regarding inability to
  143  comply with this subparagraph. The legislature may enact
  144  legislation to implement this subparagraph.
  145         (11) The right to be informed of these rights, and to be
  146  informed that victims can seek the advice of an attorney with
  147  respect to their rights. This information shall be made
  148  available to the general public and provided to all crime
  149  victims in the form of a card, or other means that is intended
  150  to effectively advise the victim of their rights under this
  151  section.
  152         (c) The victim, the retained attorney of the victim, a
  153  lawful representative of the victim, or the office of the state
  154  attorney upon request of the victim, may assert and seek
  155  enforcement of the rights enumerated in this section and any
  156  other right afforded to a victim by law in any trial or
  157  appellate court, or before any other authority with jurisdiction
  158  over the case, as a matter of right. The court or other
  159  authority with jurisdiction shall act promptly on such a
  160  request, affording a remedy by due course of law for the
  161  violation of any right. The reasons for any decision regarding
  162  the disposition of a victim’s right shall be clearly stated on
  163  the record.
  164         (d) The granting of these rights enumerated in this section
  165  to victims may not be construed to deny or impair any other
  166  rights possessed by victims. The provisions of this section
  167  apply throughout criminal and juvenile justice processes are
  168  self-executing and do not require implementing legislation. This
  169  section may not be construed to create any cause of action for
  170  damages against the state or a political subdivision of the
  171  state, or any officer, employee, or agent of the state or its
  172  political subdivisions.
  173         (e) As used in this section, a “victim” is a person who
  174  suffers direct or threatened physical, psychological, or
  175  financial harm as a result of the commission or attempted
  176  commission of a crime or delinquent act or against whom the
  177  crime or delinquent act is committed. The term “victim” includes
  178  the victim’s lawful representative, the parent or guardian of a
  179  minor, or the next of kin of a homicide victim, except upon a
  180  showing that the interest of such individual would be in actual
  181  or potential conflict with the interests of the victim. The term
  182  “victim” does not include the accused. The terms “crime” and
  183  “criminal” include delinquent acts and conduct Victims of crime
  184  or their lawful representatives, including the next of kin of
  185  homicide victims, are entitled to the right to be informed, to
  186  be present, and to be heard when relevant, at all crucial stages
  187  of criminal proceedings, to the extent that these rights do not
  188  interfere with the constitutional rights of the accused.
  190         Section 8 of Article V of the State Constitution is
  191  amended, and section 21 is added to that article, to read:
  192                              ARTICLE V                            
  193                              JUDICIARY                            
  194         SECTION 8. Eligibility.—No person shall be eligible for
  195  office of justice or judge of any court unless the person is an
  196  elector of the state and resides in the territorial jurisdiction
  197  of the court. No justice or judge shall serve after attaining
  198  the age of seventy-five seventy years except upon temporary
  199  assignment or to complete a term, one-half of which has been
  200  served. No person is eligible for the office of justice of the
  201  supreme court or judge of a district court of appeal unless the
  202  person is, and has been for the preceding ten years, a member of
  203  the bar of Florida. No person is eligible for the office of
  204  circuit judge unless the person is, and has been for the
  205  preceding five years, a member of the bar of Florida. Unless
  206  otherwise provided by general law, no person is eligible for the
  207  office of county court judge unless the person is, and has been
  208  for the preceding five years, a member of the bar of Florida.
  209  Unless otherwise provided by general law, a person shall be
  210  eligible for election or appointment to the office of county
  211  court judge in a county having a population of 40,000 or less if
  212  the person is a member in good standing of the bar of Florida.
  213         SECTION 21. Judicial interpretation of statutes and rules.
  214  In interpreting a state statute or rule, a state court or an
  215  officer hearing an administrative action pursuant to general law
  216  may not defer to an administrative agency’s interpretation of
  217  such statute or rule, and must instead interpret such statute or
  218  rule de novo.
  220         A new section is added to Article XII to the State
  221  Constitution to read:
  222                             ARTICLE XII                           
  223                              SCHEDULE                             
  224         Eligibility of justices and judges.—The amendment to
  225  Section 8 of Article V, which increases the age at which a
  226  justice or judge is no longer eligible to serve in judicial
  227  office except upon temporary assignment, shall take effect July
  228  1, 2019.
  230  BE IT FURTHER PROPOSED that the following statement be placed on
  231  the ballot:
  233                      CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT                     
  234                        ARTICLE I, SECTION 16                      
  235                      ARTICLE V, SECTIONS 8, 21                    
  236                      ARTICLE XII, NEW SECTION                     
  237         RIGHTS OF CRIME VICTIMS; JUDGES.—Creates constitutional
  238  rights for victims of crime; requires courts to facilitate
  239  victims’ rights; authorizes victims to enforce their rights
  240  throughout criminal and juvenile justice processes. Requires
  241  judges and hearing officers to independently interpret statutes
  242  and rules rather than deferring to government agency’s
  243  interpretation. Raises mandatory retirement age of state judges
  244  from seventy to seventy-five years; deletes authorization for
  245  judges to complete term if one-half of term has been served by
  246  retirement age.