Press Release from Winter Park’s Vose Law Firm —
Winter Park, Fla. (Aug. 26, 2013) – A new lawsuit was filed today seeking to strike the controversial “sick time” measure from the next Orange County election ballot. The suit was prompted by a new Florida law signed by Governor Rick Scott in June preempting local governments from “mandat[ing], establish[ing], or otherwise requir[ing]” employers to provide employment benefits not required by Florida or federal law.
The suit, brought by former state representative and former Winter Park mayor Allen Trovillion, alleges that in light of the new Florida law, both the adoption and enforcement of the ordinance proposed by the ballot measure are illegal in themselves, and that the ballot language is inherently misleading to voters because of the effect of the new law.
The suit also alleges that it is “in the public interest that substantial public financial resources, as well as personnel time and effort, not be wasted on a Ballot Measure prohibited by Florida law.” Said Trovillion:
“With the passage of the new state law, I see no reason why anyone on any side of the political spectrum would support wasting taxpayer money and voter time on printing and distributing a misleading, and statutorily prohibited ballot question, other than for cynical political gain.”
Wade Vose, a partner with Winter Park-based Vose Law Firm LLP, which represents Trovillion in the action, noted that the suit also focuses on the obvious public interest in avoiding voter confusion at the polls, which together with superfluous ballot initiatives, has been cited as a form of voter suppression. “When you have a ballot measure that promises to provide myriad benefits and to be enforceable in court, but Florida law clearly prohibits its enforcement, you don’t get a much better example of a misleading ballot measure,” said Vose.
Trovillion also stated, “The taxpayers of Orange County should not have to pay to print, distribute and explain a ballot item that is prohibited by law, and that is bound to confuse, waste time, increase voting time and mislead voters, just so Washington-financed activists can score political points. This lawsuit will save money, eliminate confusion and uncertainty, and avoid misleading several hundred thousand voters.”