|Member of the Florida Senate
from the 17th district
|Preceded by||JD Alexander|
|Member of the Florida House of Representatives
from the 46th district
|Preceded by||Heather Fiorentino|
|Succeeded by||Bruce Antone|
April 29, 1975 |
|Alma mater||Pasco–Hernando Community College (A.A.) University of South Florida (B.A.) (M.P.A.)|
Legg was born in Brooksville and lives in Port Richey, with his wife, Suzanne, and his five children, Rebecca, Dylan, Alexa, Jack, and Evangeline. He attended Pasco–Hernando Community College and the University of South Florida, where he graduated with a degree in social work in 1995. Legg worked as an educator, helping to establish the Dayspring Academy, a Pasco County charter school, in 2000.
Florida House of Representatives
In 2002, Legg ran for the Florida House of Representatives from the 45th District, though he lost to Tom Anderson in the Republican primary. Afterwards, he worked for State Representative Heather Fiorentino of the 46th district, as her staff director and as a consultant for the Republican Party of Florida. Following Fiorentino's retirement in 2004, Legg ran to succeed her, defeating John Stewart to win his party's nomination. In the general election, he faced Democratic nominee Delores Thomas and campaigned on a platform of opposing gun control and supporting affordable health insurance and smaller class sizes. He defeated Thomas easily, winning 56% of the vote. Legg was re-elected without opposition in 2006, and in 2008, faced Democratic nominee Ron Rice and independent candidate John J. Ubele. In this election, he received the endorsement of the Tampa Bay Times, which praised him as an advocate for "helping shape state education policy," and easily defeated Rice and Ubele. He was elected to his final term in the House in 2010 with no opposition. During his final term, he served as the Speaker Pro Tempore of the Florida House of Representatives.
Facing term limits in 2012, Legg resolved to run for the Florida State Senate in the 17th District, initially challenging incumbent State Senator Jim Norman in the primary. However, Norman ultimately decided against seeking another term, and Legg instead faced former State Representative Rob Wallace and security consultant John Korsak in the Republican primary. Though the Tampa Bay Times criticized him for the fact that he pushed "controversial bills that ended tenure for newly hired teachers and tied performance evaluations to standardized test results," they endorsed him once again, specifically citing his advocacy "for using end-of-year tests to supplant the FCAT as a measure of high school student achievement." Legg defeated Wallace and Korsak by a fairly wide margin and was unopposed in the general election.
After winning his seat in the Senate, he was immediately selected by Senate President Don Gaetz (R-Niceville) to serve as the chairman for the newly created Senate Education Committee; combining the formerly separate K-12, Higher Education and Workforce into one cohesive committee. He immediately took charge by sponsoring Senate Bill 1076, which was landmark legislation known as the Career and Professional Education Act (CAPE) of 2013, expanding the current CAPE program. "It enables middle and high school students to work towards industry certification while earning a high school diploma with the credits needed to enroll in college."
Senator Legg then emerged as a leader on an issue important to many Floridians: nuclear cost recovery for energy companies. He sponsored Senate Bill 1472 (Nuclear and Integrated Gasification Combined Cycle Power Plants). "The bill increases the number of regulatory hoops a company has to jump through in order to pass PSC scrutiny and get rate hikes approved, and gives the PSC new authority to halt collection of the approved utility fees if construction is not advancing after 10 years, and again after 20 years." He also worked to pass legislation that would toughen restrictions on charter schools by "[cracking] down on nepotism in school management, [forbidding] large expenditures after a school declares its intentions to shut down and [requiring] uniform monthly accountings to be posted on a school's website."
- "District 46 State House: NEWCOMERS FACE OFF: John Stewart, 57, and John Legg, 29, haven't held public office before. They cover a wide variety of issues in their campaign platforms.". St. Petersburg Times. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- "For a better legislature". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- "John Legg switches Senate districts, will challenge Jim Norman". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- "Jim Norman has withdrawn from his state Senate race". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- "For a better Florida Senate". Tampa Bay Times. Retrieved May 13, 2013.
- Call, James. "Senate 'lashes' education to the economy". The Florida Current. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
- Turner, Jim. "Tampa Senate Delegation Teams to Fight Nuke Plant Charges". Sunshine State News. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
- Giunta, Eric. "A Day of Mixed Blessings for Power Companies, Utility Payers". Sunshine State News. Retrieved 5 June 2013.
- "2013 session skipped some things, accomplished others". Tampa Tribune. Retrieved May 13, 2013.