Bill filed to relax Fla.'s tough gift ban law

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Posted at 12:20 PM, Mar 07, 2013
and last updated 2013-03-07 07:22:13-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - A Florida lawmaker is proposing a two-year breather on the state's ban on gifts from lobbyists.

Sen. Tom Lee, R-Brandon, filed a bill this week to relax the current ban until 2015.

His bill (SB 1634) would allow legislators to accept non-alcoholic beverages from lobbyists. The measure would allow legislators to accept a meal if the legislator is a speaker at the event.

Legislators could also eat at a big public event hosted by a local government or other groups if the event was scheduled in advance.

Lee, a former Senate President, helped pushed the current gift ban into law. But it has been criticized by some as too stringent.

Lee's bill would only be in effect for two years to make sure the changes are working.