State Rep. Holly Raschein, R-Key Largo, will attend a Tuesday evening event sponsored by the Lower Keys League of Women Voters.
It's the group's October edition of its "Fifth Tuesday" series of social gatherings. This one is set for 5 to 7 p.m. at New York Pasta Garden, 1075 Duval St., in Duval Square.
But the meet-and-greet with the state representative also marks the one-year anniversary of Florida Keys women bringing the nonpartisan civic group back to the island chain.
The Key West chapter is one of two resurrected in 2012 by the state League of Women Voters, which numbers 900 state and local Leagues, including chapters in Hong Kong and Puerto Rico.
The League doesn't endorse political candidates but is a political advocate for certain policies.
Now a year old, the Lower Keys group is adding events to its plate, such as a Nov. 12 civics lesson with county tax collector Danise Henriquez, tentatively scheduled for 7 to 9 p.m. at the Sunset Marina Club House.
Florida's League of Women Voters dates back to 1939 when women in Winter Park and St. Petersburg decided to form chapters of the national movement, which began circa 1920.
"I'm a member of the Upper Keys League," Raschein said Friday, after a long day of meetings. "But I wouldn't say I'm a very active member."
The group understands why, as Raschein is in her first term as state representative for District 120.
Raschein said she has no prepared speech for Tuesday night, but will provide an update the work she's been doing in Tallahassee, from insurance rates to tougher penalties for lobster and stone crab poachers.
"Flood insurance, that's the latest crisis obviously," Raschein said. "It's impacting our recovering real estate market. I've heard of dozens of deals cancelled because of this. Astronomical rate increases -- homeowners cannot absorb these."
Raschein noted that the state League of Women Voters has endorsed the constitutional amendment meant to revive "Florida Forever," a water and land conservation program that, if passed by voters in November 2014, would dedicate funding from documentary stamp tax charges for real estate sales.
The amendment would provide some $10 million to restore the Everglades and protect drinking water sources and wildlife habitat, without raising taxes, proponents say.
"I'm a big proponent of Florida Forever and the environment," said Raschein.
As for lobster and stone crab poaching, Raschein said the current law hasn't any teeth when it comes to prosecuting the main offenders.
"You can have one short lobster or 500 and it's the same effect," said Raschein.
"It's about the sustainability of the fisheries. It's not meant to punish one-time offenders or the old couple that has one or two, it's to combat the egregious poaching."
For more information on the Florida League of Women Voters, visit its website at thefloridavoter.org; for the Key West chapter, leave a message for Joy Brown Taylor at 305-294-2424.