Sen. Sachs Appointed to Joint Legislative Auditing Committee

Senator Sachs has been appointed to the Joint Legislative Auditing Committee, a prestigious group of Senators and State Representatives in charge of ensuring that taxpayer money is properly allocated.

The committee is designed to provide continuous oversight of all government operations by auditing the activities of local governments and certain state offices.  As part of its audit, the committee is authorized to conduct investigations, during which members may hold hearings and are granted the power of subpoena.

“I look forward to this opportunity to ensure Florida’s tax dollars are spent wisely, and to help guard against waste and fraud,” Senator Sachs said Monday. “Florida’s taxpayers deserve nothing less.”

During its first meeting, the committee ordered a sweeping audit of Lake Worth’s sewer system, granting Auditor General David Martin broad leeway to investigate the dispute between the city and its seven regional sewage partners in Palm Beach County- Atlantis, Lantana, Manalapan, Palm Beach, South Palm Beach, Palm Springs and Palm Beach State College.  At the hearing, Senator Sachs stressed the important role of the committee in ensuring against fraud and mismanagement at the local level.  “Any hesitation of any government entity to open its books is suspect,” she told the Palm Beach Post at the close of the proceedings.

Sen. Sachs’ Life Saving Legislation Progresses through Senate

Sen. Sachs presents the Good Samaritan Bill to the Criminal Justice Committee. Behind her, representatives from the Florida Sheriffs and Police Benevolent Associations stand in support of the legislation.

Senator Sachs’ Good Samaritan 911 bill passed through the Criminal Justice Committee this week with unanimous bipartisan support.  Developed with the help of the Florida Sheriffs Association, this bill prevents needless loss of life and allows our law enforcement officers to focus on serious criminal activity.  If passed, the bill would protect a person acting in good faith from prosecution (in certain circumstances) when seeking medical assistance for an individual experiencing a drug-related overdose.

In 2009, nearly 3,000 people died from a drug overdose.  In a majority of these cases someone else was present at the time who could have called for help.  Many of these witnesses sited fear of being charged with a crime as the reason they did not call for help.

Drug overdose is the second-leading cause of accidental death in the nation, right behind traffic crashes.  In Palm Beach County, more people die each year from drug overdose than from car accidents or homicide.

Senator Sachs with a picture of Haile and her mother, Nelder, and Mike Edmondson, of the Children Services Council, at the first press conference

Update: Senator Sachs’ Child Safety Legislation

Senator Maria Sachs’ child safety legislation (SB 1140) passed unanimously through the Transportation Committee this week.  The proposed bill, otherwise known as the Haile Brockington Act, is in response to a disturbing increase in the number of children forgotten in vehicles and would require that child safety alarms be installed in all commercial daycare vehicles.  The bill only has one more committee stop before it is calendared for a final vote on the floor of the Senate Chamber.  In her first press conference on the bill, Senator Sachs vowed to work hard for its passage this year to stop the needless loss of young lives.