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House speaker pulls plug on effort to make 911 calls confidential

House Speaker Larry Cretul said Monday he would abandon his effort to ban the public release of 911 tapes. He made the disclosure at the annual luncheon on open government. He said he did so after talks with broadcasters and others concerned about the issue. "At this particular time we're just going to check out," he said.

Cretul and the House GOP leadership strong-armed the bill through a committee last week despite opposition from Democrats, media organizations and free speech advocates. Opponents also criticized the measure's origins, noting that it came from the politically connected Florida Farm Bureau president, whose son died from an alcohol and drug overdose in 2009.

The speaker said he would rather see members focus on another bill creating statewide training standards for 911 dispatchers.

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