New bill helps high school athletes change schools

Bill heads to to Gov. Rick Scott's desk

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. - A bill making it easier for high school athletes to transfer with less fear of retribution and also require the Florida High School Athletics Association to award membership to any school seeking it is heading to Gov. Rick Scott.

The Senate passed the measure (HB 1403) on a 21-18 vote after an hour of debate Thursday. Among other things, the bill puts the burden of proof on high school administrators to prove wrongdoing if they suspect "recruiting" when an athlete transfers. The bill sanctions coaches involved in unethical recruiting. It would also encourage that schools decide on who to schedule regardless of FHSAA membership.

The governing body came in for some harsh words from Senate Rules Chairman John Thrasher who called it an "over-the-top organization" that rules with a hammer.

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