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Governor loses court battle over rule making authority

By James Call


Tallahassee, FL – The Florida Supreme Court says Governor Rick Scott overstepped his authority by suspending state agency rule making procedures. James Call reports the justices split 5-2 in the opinion issued Tuesday.

Scott had suspended the rule making process when first elected until his office had reviewed proposed rules. His attorney argued the governor had final say over agency rules. However, the justices said that rule making authority belongs to the Legislature not the governor. Scott said Tuesday the decision doesn't make sense.

"How can you expect the governor of the state to be responsible for a secretary and not be able to talk to them about the rule making? That doesn't make any sense. I was elected I was elected to run these agencies, the secretaries work at my they are at will employees. it doesn't make any sense."

The justices noted that agency rule making is governed by law. They ruled by adding a step to the process Scott had violated the constitution's separation of powers doctrine. The justices said only the Legislature can change the law.