Legislators Kick Off Session Start at Associated Industries of FL Party

By: Jennifer Milton Email
By: Jennifer Milton Email

It was all smiles and hand shakes Monday night as legislators, lobbyists and other political officials celebrated the kick-off to the start of session.

"It's a tradition, It's a Tallahassee tradition."

Every year, the Associated Industries of Florida hosts a reception to honor Florida's lawmakers and welcome them to the Capital city. The party gives senators and representatives, republicans and democrats, the chance to put their differences aside to socialize and possibly makes some allies before the 60-day battle begins.

"I can at least say hi to them and get in a quick issue with them before we start on our sprint tomorrow," said Senator Chris Smith.

"It's one of those events that's non-partisan, you see your colleagues from across the aisle," said Representative Hazelle Rogers.

A number of issues are on the chopping block this year, but many legislators believe improving Florida's economy should be at the top of the list.

"I think the governor and his push to get jobs in Florida has really transcended throughout the legislature, so a lot of things we're going to be doing is how can we get more jobs in Florida? How can we build Florida's economy, and I think that is going to be the focus this year in the legislature," said Smith.

"We recognize unemployment compensation is going to be one of those major issues and the pension plan for various employees across the state, so we're ready to work," said Rogers.

Session runs for a consecutive 60 days in which time, the members of the legislature are expected to present, preview, discuss and vote on bills that impact the people of the sunshine state.

Will a few hefty topics on the table, we'll just have to wait and see how well they can all work together to accomplish their goals.

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  • by RealityCheck Location: Tallahassee on Mar 8, 2011 at 06:30 PM
    For all you people complaining about how little you have...how are you on the internet? So you can afford computers and internet service. Perhaps if you spent less time online and more time looking for a job you would be in better shape. Give me a break. We all have the right to petition our government, without a successful business community we would all be worse off.
  • by State Worker Location: Tallahassee on Mar 8, 2011 at 09:14 AM
    This type of event is more spit in the face of taxpayers. The author quoted someone saying it's a tradition. I don't understand how that's a justification for a party attended by the very people who pretend to be my advocate and then cast their votes as the enemy. I'm not attending parties like these to socialize with my co-workers because I'm working my second job to feed my children. I think this is a disgusting display of ethics violations by the very people I'm supposed to trust with my life and job.
  • by Mary Ann Location: tallahassee on Mar 8, 2011 at 09:06 AM
    Again some very good points - it is our tax payers money that pays for the legislators so How do we go about giving them pink slips like they are allowing Scott to do State Employees. I pray someone at WCTV reads these comments and will do an article showing the Government what our salaries actually are in regards to the inflation. What our buying power ISN"T.
  • by Who Cares What You Say? Location: Tallahassee, FL on Mar 8, 2011 at 08:58 AM
    Isn't it the height of insensitivity to be seen partying the day before you'll be meeting to discuss cutting jobs, benefits and pensions? How can you twist your mouths to say you represent the people. What people? The people are paying almost $4 a gallon for gas, over a $1 for a loaf of bread and so much for electricity some people are dying from using space heaters or nothing at all. Where is your sense of propriety? Someone please pass a bill that says if you have to cut services to the people, the people have to cut your pay and benefits as well. It only fair, isn't it? Why do each of you need an assistant? 49 million for court house and still asking for money to furnish it?!!!! Please, People of Florida reset the combination to the vault. The glutons have lost their minds!!!!!
  • by dog Location: gone on Mar 8, 2011 at 07:06 AM
    Stop the Partying and get to WORK.
  • by Anonymous on Mar 8, 2011 at 06:44 AM
    look at them, drinking, smoking, gambling about who to get, and waddling in a snake pit of evil. God help us all for You are in control no matter what their hidden agendas are. get the behind me satan the blood of Jesus is against all yall. it's praying time, do yall here me? oh Lord help these people to do what is right according to Your word altho they may not know Your word cuz they don't go to church on sunday they don't know You or what You stand for,Lord just help they need You, too, Lord i feel sorry for them cuz satan got them in his pit, amen
  • by Lip Cheese on Mar 8, 2011 at 06:19 AM
    In all my life, good times and bad..so bad at times, I bought a $1.00 Whopper from Burger King and split it between my two children for dinner, God never let me down. Not once! I have always seen a miraculous way back to stability, sometimes being offered a job when I was too depressed to ask for one. By forgetting my preconceived notions of religion, I received what I needed through prayer. My friend Jesus helped me when I could not help myself. I am still a butthead at times but I am still trying. Go for a walk, talk to a stranger, help the homeless. You might be surprised.
  • by They have succeeeded on Mar 8, 2011 at 06:14 AM
    Corporations, politicians, and Wall Street have succeeded. They have run the economy into the ground and now wages are artificially suppressed and unemployment has skyrocketed. This has forced us all to “just be glad we have a job” and pitted us, the people, against each other. The fall of the middle class already has begun. There are just going to be the wealthy and the poor.
  • by Judy Location: Havana on Mar 8, 2011 at 05:33 AM
    To so true71: I passed the governor's mansion yesterday and thought the same thing you did. I remember when buying groceries was a "have to..." now we just do without. ~State worker also
  • by sotrue71 Location: tallahassee on Mar 8, 2011 at 05:21 AM
    you know, i saw this last night on the news...and i remember seeing the roast beef and food that they were eating...and all i could think was how hungry i was because i havent had the money to buy complete groceries this month (cheese sandwiches as many ways as can be made)... it saddens me to think that our legislature was eating well last night and there were people hungrier than me without any food last night...i guess i should be thankful that i have a roof over my head and a television (not cable) to watch (depressed in tallahassee...oh yeah, AND i'm a state worker-for now)
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