It’s election season. Every single Florida lawmaker is up for reelection this year because this is a redistricting year. The Florida House, Florida Senate, and US Congressional district lines were redrawn after the release of the population and demographic data from the 2010 census. Redistricting happens every ten years after the census is done. Then each lawmaker has to run for office to represent the newly drawn district.
This presents a unique opportunity for Floridians. For three years in a row now, the Florida legislature has attempted to pass laws that will erode the rights of homeowners and tenants by legalizing a fast, sneaky way for banks to declare homes “vacant” or “abandoned”, change locks, remove possessions, and evict the residents.
Bank friendly elected officials in the Florida House and Florida Senate introduce these bills with names that hide the true intent of the legislation. In the 2010 legislative session, the bill, introduced by Tom Grady (R-Naples) was called the “Homeowner Relief and Housing Recovery Act.” Representative Kathleen Passidomo (R-Naples), who replaced Grady as Naples’ Florida House representative, carried on Grady’s legislative legacy by introducing similar non-judicial foreclosure legislation in 2011 and 2012. Those bills also failed, but only after statewide citizen engagement, demonstrations, and protests. Look out Florida. Passidomo is running in hopes of being re-elected against a challenger, Peter Richter. Another Florida House lawmaker who supports legalization of foreclosure fraud is George Moraitis, JR., (R-Ft. Lauderdale).