Lieutenant Governor of Florida
- See also: Current Lieutenant Governors
The 18th and current lieutenant governor is Jennifer Carroll, a Republican elected in 2010. She took office on January 9, 2011 and will come up for re-election, if she chooses to run, in November 2014.
Before becoming lieutenant governor, Carroll was a member of the Florida House of Representatives from 2003 to 2010. From 2004 to 2006, she served as majority whip and was deputy majority leader from 2003 to 2004. She ran unsuccessfully for U.S. House in 2000 and 2002. Carroll is a 20-year veteran of the U.S. Navy, where she served from 1979 to 1999, retiring at the rank of lieutenant commander. She also owned and operated 3N and JC Corporation, a public relations consulting firm she and her husband founded.
Carroll holds an M.B.A. from St. Leo University, a B.A. from the University of New Mexico and an A.A. from Leeward Community College. She and her husband, Nolan, have three children.
There shall be a lieutenant governor, who shall perform such duties pertaining to the office of governor as shall be assigned by the governor...
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Per Article IV, Section 5 of the state constitution, the governor must be at least 30 years old and have been a resident and registered voter of Florida for at least seven years on the day of his election.
Florida elects lieutenant governors in federal midterm election years (e.g. 2006, 2010, 2014) The lieutenant gubernatorial inauguration is always set for the first Tuesday after the first Monday in the January following an election. Thus, January 9, 2011 and January 12, 2015 are inaugural days.
Although gubernatorial candidates are not required to have a running mate for the primaries, the state constitution requires a 'joint candidacy' for the general election.
Lieutenant governors of Florida are prohibited by the state constitution from serving more than two terms in a row. These need not necessarily be two full terms: if a person has served more than six years in a row, he is considered to have served two terms. After remaining out of office for one term, a former officeholder may again seek election. Details of term limits are laid out in Article IV, Section 5 of the Florida Constitution.
The manner for filling a vacancy in the lieutenant governor's chair is set out in statute, not constitutionally. In the case of a vacancy, the governor appoints a replacement to serve the remainder of the former officeholder's term.
However, if, after the appointment of a replacement lieutenant governor, a vacancy then occurs in the office of governor with more than 28 months remaining in the term, voters must choose a governor and lieutenant governor to serve out the remainder of the terms at the next general election.
Florida Statutes, 14.055
Upon vacancy in the office of Lieutenant Governor, the Governor shall appoint a successor who shall serve for the remainder of the term, provided that if after the appointment a vacancy occurs in the office of Governor with more than 28 months remaining in the term, at the next statewide general election the electors shall choose a Governor and Lieutenant Governor to fill the remainder of the term...
The lieutenant governor's primary duty is to replace the governor in case of his death, resignation, or inability to exercise his office. In addition, he may have other such duties as the governor and state legislature may assign.
The lieutenant governor's pay is set by law and may not be increased or diminished effective during the current term.
In 2010, the lieutenant governor was paid $124,851 a year, the 9th highest lieutenant gubernatorial salary in America.
Prior to 1968, the president of the state senate was first in the line of succession.
The position was restored with the 1968 revision of the state constitution (See Article IV, Section 2). The position had existed for a few decades after Florida achieved statehood in 1845, then was abolished in a previous constitutional revision.
Office of Lieutenant Governor
State of Florida
PL-05 The Capitol
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0001
Citizen Services Hotline: (850) 488-4441
Executive Office of the Governor Switchboard: (850) 488-7146