Miami-Dade ballot items target public records and taxing districts

Two proposed amendments to the Miami-Dade charter would let cities establish special taxing districts for private neighborhoods and could make it easier for members of the public to copy government records.

Florida law requires governments to provide copies of public records, rather than just allow people to inspect them. Miami-Dade governments must follow state law when it comes to records, so county residents already have a right to copy public documents and other materials.

But the Citizens’ Bill of Rights in the county charter outlines a narrower requirement for public records, mentioning only that they be “open for inspection” at reasonable times. The proposed charter amendment would add the phrase “and copying, consistent with the requirements of the State of Florida’s public record laws.”