1960s Florida PBA began in the 1960’s when elected leaders of several Fraternal Order of Police lodges around Florida met with Dade County police officers and decided to form a statewide politically active labor organization for law enforcement personnel. Charlie Maddox elected first president.
1972 With over 1,000 members, the FPBA established a membership representation system, and members in every district, agency, municipality, and division could be represented. Police officers continued to gain through the FPBA and soon became recognized as professionals.
1974 PBA proposed legislation passed giving law enforcement officers the right to engage in collective bargaining. The contract and safeguards you now have go back to this legislation. Salary incentive payments guaranteed on the local level also passed.
1981 The Association approved its first chapter, which consisted of members from area, city, county, state or local agencies.
1982 Florida Supreme Court affirms public employees right to collectively bargain for retirement. (City of Tallahassee v. PERC)
1986 PBA proposed legislation passed raising retirement credit amount to that of FRS Special Risk for officers under a municipal police pension plan, enhanced minimum disability benefits, gave officers more say in the running of their pensions and permitted Boards of Trustees to hire their own legal counsel.
1988 PBA successfully argues before the Florida Supreme Court that public employees’ right to collectively bargain supercedes Civil Service Rules and Regulations. (Hillsborough County Governmental Employees Association, Hillsborough County PBA, Inc., PERC v. Hillsborough County Aviation Authority and Hillsborough County Civil Service Board)
PBA proposed legislation increased the retirement accrual rate of special risk members of FRS from 2 percent to 3 percent a year.
1991 Florida Supreme Court rules that Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services officers have the right to warrantless felony arrests. (Florida PBA, Inc. v. Florida Department of Consumer Services)
1993 PBA proposed legislation passed extending the Police Bill of Rights to all Florida Deputy Sheriffs.
1994 PBA proposed legislation passed which provided that any political subdivision which employs a police officer or correctional officer killed in the line of duty as the result of an act of violence inflicted by another person shall pay health insurance for the officer’s spouse and children for a defined period.
1995 Bob Sheehan, West Central Florida PBA, elected president.
1996 PBA proposed legislation passed the Alu-O’Hara Public Safety Act. Allows full-time law enforcement and correctional officers who suffer a catastrophic injury in the line of duty to receive full payment for their health insurance if the officer became injured when responding to an emergency, fresh pursuit, or because of the unlawful act by another. Free coverage was also provided for the spouse and for dependent children up to the age of 25.
1997 PBA proposed legislation passed creating the Deferred Retirement Option Program (DROP) for Florida Retirement System employees.
1998 Ernie George, Palm Beach County PBA, elected president.
1999 PBA proposed legislation passed measure ensuring that state tax dollars sent to cities for police pensions will be used properly and certain minimum benefits were guaranteed. It was a major reform and enhancement of municipal police pension plans.
PBA proposed legislation passed the Heart and Lung Law. Providing that any condition or impairment of health caused by tuberculosis, heart disease, or hypertension resulting in total or partial disability shall be presumed to have been accidental and to have been sufof duty. In 2002, coverage was extended to all state and local law enforcement and correctional officers.
2000 PBA proposed legislation created the Law Enforcement and Correctional Officers Bill of Rights. Allowing officers to see all statements made by complainants and witnesses prior to any disciplinary proceeding.
PBA proposed legislation increased the Special Risk buy-back. Restoring benefits to a full 3 percent a year accrual for those active and retired officers who had received less than a three percent benefit for their prior service years.
2002 PBA proposed legislation passed doubling existing death benefits (maximum $150,000) for state and local officers killed in the line of duty. Indexing the amount to the annual inflation rate, so the amount goes up every year. Allowing surviving children and spouses to attend college (through post graduate school) tuition-free.
2003 Florida Supreme Court rules on PBA case, Williams v. Coastal Florida PBA, that Deputy Sheriffs’ have the right to collectively bargain.
PBA proposed legislation increased from zero to six the number of rank and file law enforcement officers on the 19 member Criminal Justice Standards and Training Commission (CJSTC). CJSTC is the body that grants certification to officers and, likewise, can take away an officer’s certification to work as a law enforcement or correctional officer. Having the six commissioners of this rank has made for a much fairer and sympathetic hearing board for rank and file officers up on charges.
Note: Current Florida PBA President John Rivera served many years as one of these six commissioners, having been appointed for terms of office by both Governors Bush and Crist. A number of PBA presidents have served on the CJSTC including Ernie George (who also served as Chairman), Pat Hanrahan, Mick McHale, and current CJSTC Commissioner Nick Marolda.