February 2017

Greetings from the Legislative Chair!

Our 2017 Annual Meeting was January 21st and elections were held.  Laurel Freeman did an excellent job as Commissioner on Candidacy and was recognized by the Board.  Also, thank you to our teller committee that did a fantastic job as well!  Marsha McKelvey, Angela Shaffer, and Dawn McCartney presented the membership with the slate of officers and delegates.

Elected to office: Lia Baker, Board Member (2017-2019) Stephanie Simpson, Secretary (2017-2018), Karen Roth, Financial Administrator (2017-2019)

Delegates – 2 year term: Jessica Sward (2017-2019), Jennifer Washington (2014-2019), Stephanie Simpson (2017-2019)

Alternate Delegates – 1 year term: Jean Pierre DeBarros, Laurel Freeman, Matt Florio, Joe Festante, Karen Roth

A huge thank you to James Specker, Government & Industry Relations Director from AMTA National, for coming to observe and build relationships with our Florida Chapter as well as the Florida Board of Massage during the General Business meeting in St. Augustine January 26th and 27th.

News from Tallahassee, Janet Mabry, Lobbyist

Elections are over and committees have been staffed and meetings have begun.  Committees that are of paramount interest to AMTA are the following:

Senate: Banking and Insurance chaired by Senator Anitere Flores.  This committee will handle the issues of Workers Compensation and the repeat of PIP and implementation of Mandatory Bodily Injury.  Already workshops have been held on workers compensation and a workshop on MBI was held on January 24th.

Health Policy chaired by Senator Dana Young.  This committee will be in charge of any legislation that is filed that will impact health care providers, including any legislation to Chapter 480, our licensing act.  This committee is also in charge of implementation of the Florida Constitution Amendment 2; Use of Marijuana for Debilitating Medical Conditions.  An initial discussion was held December 13, 2016.

The House committees that will be handling these issues are:

House: Insurance and Banking chaired by Representative Burgess, handling MBI (Mandatory Bodily Injury) and WC (Workers Compensation).  The Health Quality Subcommittee chaired by Representative and MD Cary Pigman, handling all Chapter (if filed) 480 legislation nd Department of Health legislation and Implementation of amendment 2 legislation.  They too have begun workshops with the first held on January 11th.

  1. Legislation has begun to be filed but as of yet there is no filed legislation to Chapter 480.  Legislation that is already on our monitoring list.  Which means we are keeping an eye on it for amendments but feel it has not actual impact on our profession as filed include:

    1. SB 156 by Senator Brandes; repeals PIP in 2020 but offers no replacement

    2. SB 114 by Senator Brandes cosmetic product registration.

  2. Board of Massage presented proposed legislation at their December Board meeting.  It was on their agenda for the January 26th and 27th General Business meeting but wasn’t discussed.  The Board traditionally doesn’t file separate legislation but rather asks for certain provisions to be included in the Department bill.  We are monitoring both the Board of Massage meetings and ultimately the Department legislation and those sections that may pertain to Chapter 480.

If ever I could be of assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out.  Thank you for the opportunity to serve!

Stephanie Simpson | Secretary, Legislative Chair, Delegate

American Massage Therapy Association, Florida Chapter

1-941-237-1020 | amtaflorida.org

Legislative Update

April 2017

From: Karen Roth President and Janet Mabry AMTA Lobbyist

As many of you may have seen on various massage postings  there is some confusion as to the repeal of PIP and the implementation of Mandatory Bodily Injury.
First AMTA has been involved in the discussions meetings and legislative committee meetings from the beginning.

In the Senate SB 1766 by Senator Lee we offered up language that would have removed the prohibition against the use of massage, in the new med pay. This language was removed as the Senate position would no re-addition of cost drivers such as massage and acupuncture.
AMTA then took the position to support the HB 1063 by Representative Grall that is the repeal of PIP with no med pay provision and the enactment of mandatory bodily injury. We were successful in getting this bill off the House floor.  It now resides in the Senate .

However, the issue of med pay continues to plague the Senate bill. AMTA will continue to push for the House bill. It is clear that the Senate under the direction of President Negron ( the author of many of the last PIP changes) that they are only interested in MBI if a med pay is included and that they would prefer most if not all the money to go to hospitals.

Feel secure that AMTA has been working on this issue since the beginning of session along with Workers compensation, and all other bills that may impact the practice of massage.

If you have any questions or concerns please get in touch.

If you would like to contact your legislator on this issue please have them support the House position, HB 1063 by Representative Grall

June 23rd, 2017

Attn: Product Liability Coverage

Dear AMTA Florida Members,

We attended a recent Legislative Summit meeting at the FSMTA Convention where it was discussed that there were some insurance cases where LMT’s were not covered by their liability insurance for using Tiger Balm. This caused alarm and concern, therefore we sought more information regarding our insurance benefits. Please rest assured that your AMTA Professional Liability Insurance Program includes an additional Product Liability segment which ‘covers legal obligations that result from a client’s unfavorable reaction to products you use during the professional massage services you provide’. The Tiger Balm case would have been covered. Further information will be provided regarding the recent Legislative meeting.

Thank you,

Jessica Sward, President AMTA Florida Chapter

Janet Mabry, AMTA Fl0rida Lobbyist

James Specker, AMTA Govern

Get on the 2019 Ballot TODAY!!

Fill out the Ballot application and our Elections Coordinator will contact you promptly about the position.


Contact the online supervisor of elections, Laurel Freeman with any questions @ 352.538.3400 and leave a message. She will call you back ASAP.