Miami-Dade Legislative Item
File Number: 082378
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File Number: 082378 File Type: Resolution Status: Adopted
Version: 0 Reference: R-1379-08 Control: Board of County Commissioners
File Name: IMPLEMENT A PLAIN LANGUAGE INITIATIVE Introduced: 8/20/2008
Requester: NONE Cost: Final Action: 12/2/2008
Agenda Date: 12/2/2008 Agenda Item Number: 11A15
Notes: Title: RESOLUTION SETTING A ''PLAIN LANGUAGE'' POLICY FOR MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; DIRECTING THE MAYOR OR DESIGNEE TO IMPLEMENT THE PLAIN LANGUAGE POLICY
Indexes: NONE
Sponsors: Rebeca Sosa, Prime Sponsor
  Carlos A. Gimenez, Co-Sponsor
  Natacha Seijas, Co-Sponsor
  Audrey M. Edmonson, Co-Sponsor
Sunset Provision: No Effective Date: Expiration Date:
Registered Lobbyist: None Listed


Legislative History

Acting Body Date Agenda Item Action Sent To Due Date Returned Pass/Fail

Board of County Commissioners 12/2/2008 11A15 Adopted P

Governmental Operations and Environment Committee 11/10/2008 3W Forwarded to BCC with a favorable recommendation P
REPORT: Assistant County Attorney Geri Bonzon-Keenan read the foregoing proposed resolution into the record. Hearing no comments or questions, the Committee proceeded to vote on the foregoing proposed resolution as presented.

County Manager 10/21/2008 Referred Governmental Operations and Environment Committee 11/10/2008

County Attorney 8/27/2008 Referred Governmental Operations and Environment Committee 10/14/2008

County Attorney 8/20/2008 Assigned Jess M. McCarty

Legislative Text


TITLE
RESOLUTION SETTING A ''PLAIN LANGUAGE'' POLICY FOR MIAMI-DADE COUNTY; DIRECTING THE MAYOR OR DESIGNEE TO IMPLEMENT THE PLAIN LANGUAGE POLICY

BODY
WHEREAS, shortly after taking office, Governor Charlie Crist issued Executive Order 07-01 (attached), which, among other things, instituted a ''Plain Language Initiative'' requiring all announcements, publications and other documents to contain clear and concise instructions and information; and
WHEREAS, as part of his Plain Language Initiative, the Governor strongly encouraged state agencies to move away from heavy reliance on the use of acronyms and required each state agency under his purview to develop a plan to implement the Plain Language Initiative; and
WHEREAS, while the Plain Language Initiative applied only to state agencies under the Governor's purview, he encouraged local governments and other government agencies that deal directly with the public to seriously consider joining the Plain Language Initiative; and
WHEREAS, heavy use of acronyms and unnecessarily complex memoranda, notices, website information and other communications not only make government more difficult for the community to understand, but has also led to confusion on recent items before this Board; and
WHEREAS, the Administration should do a thorough review of memoranda, notices, reports, letters, website information and other communications with the public, businesses and other government agencies, and revise such communications so as to make them easy to read and understand by using common language to the greatest extent possible; and
WHEREAS, making a conscious effort to use common, easy to understand language will help to make government more accessible to residents,
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE BOARD OF COUNTY COMMISSIONERS OF MIAMI-DADE COUNTY, FLORIDA, that:
Section 1. It is the policy of Miami-Dade County to use plain language wherever possible and to make all memoranda, notices, reports, letters, website information and other communications as easy to read and understand as possible.
Section 2. The Mayor or Designee shall do a thorough review of all memoranda, notices, reports, letters, website information and other communications with the public, businesses and other governmental agencies to ensure that plain language is used and that these communications are as easy to read and understand as possible through the use of common language.
Section 3. Within 120 days of the effective date of this resolution, the Mayor or Designee shall (i) report back to this Board the results of the review set forth in section 2 above and (ii) provide a draft Implementing Order for the Board's approval that implements the plain language policy set forth in this resolution. The draft Implementing Order should set forth the most effective and cost-effective means of implementing a plain language policy.



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