Rep. Jimmy Patronis is not sponsoring a bill to repeal the gift ban legislation proposed by Sen. Dennis Jones as was first reported in The Miami Herald/St. Petersburg Times. Patronis said the restaurant industry talked to him about sponsoring it but he never agreed to it.
Jones, R-Seminole, filed the bill this year, his last term in office, because he believes it has had a destructive effect on the ability of constituents to meet with their legislators. Patronis, a Panama City restaurateur, said that he sympathizes with the Tallahassee restaurant industry who say the ban on anyone buying legislator a dinner or a cup of coffee has had an adverse impact on their business. Patronis's decision not to co-sponsor the bill leaves Jones without a sponsor in the House.