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Bill Seeks Priority For Nursing Home Power Restoration

Florida Legislature
Florida House of Representatives
The Florida Channel
Leon County Judge John Cooper on June 30, 2022, in a screen grab from The Florida Channel.

A House Republican on Friday proposed a measure that seeks to ensure power restoration for nursing homes and hospitals is a priority after hurricanes and other emergencies.

The bill (HB 245), filed by Rep. Shawn Harrison, R-Tampa, comes after the deaths of residents of a Broward County nursing home that lost its air-conditioning system Sept. 10 because of Hurricane Irma. Eight residents of The Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills died Sept. 13, and four more died later after the sweltering facility was evacuated.

Harrison's bill, which is filed for the 2018 legislative session, would require a state comprehensive emergency-management plan to include guidelines for restoring electrical service with “prioritization of critical end-use facilities,” including hospitals and nursing homes.