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Category archives for: Florida Legislature

Rick Scott Proposing to Raise Per-Student Funding Back to Nominal High of 2007

| January 12, 2015

The proposal would mark an increase of roughly $261 from the current budget year, which ends June 30. But it still has to survive a legislative process in which lawmakers will be eager to fulfill their own priorities.

As Lenhart Replaces Weeks, A Canvassing Meeting Where The Biggest News Is No News

| January 12, 2015

Gov. Rick Scott appointed Kaiti Lenhart Interim Flagler County Supervisor of Elections, and the county canvassing board met for the first time today in the post-Kimberle Weeks era, and in a radically different atmosphere.

Light Up Again: John Morgan Files Medical Pot Amendment Language For 2016 Ballot

| January 11, 2015

The revamped measure clarifies that doctors cannot order medical marijuana for children without their parents’ approval and clears up ambiguity about what diseases would make patients eligible for medical-marijuana treatment.

Florida Lawmakers Seek Secrecy For College and University Searches and Vetting of Candidates

| January 11, 2015

Pointing to the possibility of a “chilling effect” if word gets out, a House bill filed Friday would allow information to be kept confidential about people applying to become presidents, provosts or deans of state universities or colleges.

Hearing Voters’ Demand for Conservation, Florida Senate Begins Money Game

| January 8, 2015

Since the amendment was approved, concerns have been expressed about issues such as how lawmakers will define land-preservation or water-conservation projects, how the state will determine which of its “impaired” water bodies is most critical and how to approach the reduction of stormwater runoff and agriculture fertilizer use.

Senate Appears Ready to Rethink Florida’s Obsession With High-Stakes Testing

| January 7, 2015

With parents complaining about a glut of tests in public schools and the Florida Department of Education investigating how much time students spend on exams, senators appear ready to refocus how the state assesses learning gains.

Citing Business as Sole Agenda, Gov. Rick Scott Is Inaugurated For Second Term, But Distractions Loom

| January 6, 2015

Gov. Rick Scott was sworn in for a second term shortly after noon Tuesday, beginning a new four years in office that in some ways brings as many questions as the first.

Slashing Taxes, Fighting Vouchers, Expanding Medicaid (or Not): What’s Ahead in 2015

| January 4, 2015

With Gov. Rick Scott set to be sworn in for his second term and legislative committee meetings beginning this week, the topics that will dominate discussion in the Capitol in the coming year are shaping up. Here’s a rundown.

2014 In Review: For Florida, A Year of Same-Olds More Than Change

| December 27, 2014

State government from the governor on down is virtually unchanged, with all major figures and almost all incumbent senators winning reelection, but gay marriage and some legalized marijuana suggest some change for the state.

Woman In “Catholic Warrior” Shirt Vandalizes Satanic Temple Display at Florida Capitol

| December 24, 2014

Susan Hemeryck, 54, of Tallahassee, entered the Capitol at 11:23 a.m. and told an on-duty police officer that “she was sorry and had to take the Satanic display,” according to a Florida Department of Law Enforcement charging affidavit.

Florida Legislature Tells Supreme Court That Fair District Amendment Is “Unenforceable”

| December 21, 2014

Lawyers for the Legislature told the Florida Supreme Court in a brief filed late Friday that part of a state ban on political gerrymandering violates the U.S. Constitution.

With 800,000 Floridians in Health Insurance Limbo, Hopes Return for Medicaid Expansion

| December 15, 2014

A coalition of businesses groups, local officials and healthcare industry representatives has rolled out a plan to insure nearly one million low-income Floridians who fall in the so-called Medicaid coverage gap.

Special Election for House: Renner Hauls In $76,500. His Three Opponents Combined: $355

| December 14, 2014

Renner’s $76,500 dwarfed amounts not exceeding $180 raised by three other candidates in the District 24 race — Republicans Sheamus McNeeley and Ron Sanchez and Democrat Adam Morley. Republican Danielle Anderson filed a waiver, as she had not posted a report on the state Division of Elections website by week’s end.

Craft Beer Growlers’ Day Finally Approaching in Florida, But Small Brewers Are Leery

| December 13, 2014

Proposals to end the state’s prohibition on 64-ounce containers known as “growlers” have been blocked in recent years by large beer distributors claiming a need to protect the state’s Depression-era three-tier regulation system.

Florida’s Minimum Wage Going Up to $8.05 as Obama’s Push For $10.10 Remains Elusive

| December 10, 2014

A Democratic bill in the Florida Legislature would seek the $10,10 threshold, but its chances of passing are slim to none. Business groups like the Florida Chamber of Commerce have argued against such proposals.

Taxpayers’ Bill for Rick Scott’s Losing Battle to Drug-Test Welfare Recipients: $307,000 and Rising

| December 8, 2014

ACLU of Florida Executive Director Howard Simon, who blamed the governor and the Legislature for the cost to taxpayers, blasted Scott for refusing to back down as the governor mulls appealing the latest decision calling his ploy unconstitutional.

Satanic Temple Display Approved for State Capitol, With Festivus Beer Pole and Nativity

| December 5, 2014

The Florida Department of Management Services this week approved the proposed holiday display from the Satanic Temple, which a year ago was rejected because the agency said its proposal was “grossly offensive.”

Fifth Court Decision in a Row Calls Rick Scott’s Drug-Testing Scheme Illegal

| December 3, 2014

The 11th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected a Florida law pushed by Gov. Rick Scott requiring welfare applicants to submit to drug tests before they can receive benefits.

Hurricane-Free For 9th Consecutive Season, Florida’s Property Insurers Now Better Braced for Catastrophe

| December 1, 2014

A single Andrew-like Hurricane could wipe out in a day what Florida has taken almost a decade to recoup, but those nine years of calm have also placed the state in a stronger position to face an eventual and inevitable catastrophic storm.

Florida’s Pot Legalization Forces Open 2-Front Offensive: Legislature and 2016 Ballot

| November 29, 2014

After falling just 2 points short of victory in November, medical-marijuana advocates will take their battle to the Florida Legislature, and failing that, will place the initiative on the ballot again in 2016.

Florida Republican and Democratic Legislators Renew Attempt to Protect Against Gay Bias

| November 24, 2014

The bill would add protections for more than 536,000 gays, lesbian and transgender adults living in Florida by expanding the law that forbids discrimination based on religion, race, color, ethnicity, age, gender, handicap or marital status.

Let the Hunting Begin:
Florida Lifts Ban on Silencers

| November 23, 2014

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Friday agreed, with little comment, to issue an order that immediately removes a prohibition on the use of noise-suppressors, or silencers, with rifles and pistols.

Howard Holley Will Run for Flagler’s House Seat Against Paul Renner, Sullivan, O’Brien Teetering Out

| November 20, 2014

The special election to fill Travis Hutson’s Florida House seat in District 24, made up mostly of Flagler County, is turning into a combination of musical chairs band feeding frenzy.

Divided and Diminished, Florida Democrats Choose West Palm’s Pafford to Lead in House

| November 18, 2014

After Democrats lost six seats in elections earlier this month, some members pushed instead for Rep. Dwayne Taylor, D-Daytona Beach. Taylor pulled out of the race earlier Monday, saying he couldn’t work with the leadership of the state party.

Derek Hankerson Will Not Run in Special Election for Travis Hutson’s Seat After All

| November 17, 2014

Derek Hankerson, who challenged John Thrasher in the Republican primary form Florida Senate last August, sent in the following letter today explaining why he has decided not to run again in the coming special election for either Senate or House.

Judge Throws Out Florida’s Medical Marijuana Rules, Calling Them Vague and “Unbridled”

| November 15, 2014

Administrative Law Judge W. David Watkins sided with Miami-based Costa Farms and others that objected to the Department of Health’s use of a lottery to pick five licensees that will grow, process and distribute strains of non-euphoric marijuana authorized by the Legislature and approved by Gov. Rick Scott earlier this year.

Florida Supreme Court Orders GOP Consultant to Release Redistricting Records

| November 13, 2014

The documents were requested by voting-rights organizations challenging the state’s congressional districts as Republican political consultant Pat Bainter refused to disclose them. Several media organizations also filed a “friend of the court” brief arguing for the documents’ release.

Despite Big Election Losses, LGBT Floridians Hope for Progress on Ending Workplace Discrimination

| November 12, 2014

The Florida Competitive Workforce Act would ban discrimination in the workplace based on sexual orientation. It was sponsored by one of only two openly gal legislators, who lost. It will now be sponsored by a Republican lawmaker, Rep. Holly Raschein of Key Largo.

Dave Sullivan Won’t Give Way to Trevor Tucker in Race for House as Hankerson Joins It; Democrats Are No-Shows

| November 11, 2014

Flagler School Board member Trevor Tucker said he was seriously thinking of running for an open Florida House seat in the Jan. 27 primary, but only if REC Chairman Dave Sullivan chose not to run, as Tucker doesn’t want to split the vote., Sullivan says he’s in it to stay.

Elections 2014 R.I.P.
Why Democrats Keep Failing in Florida

| November 8, 2014

For all its fear-based tactics, the Florida GOP focuses on understanding their base voters, and making them feel respected and protected. Democrats in comparison have no clue.

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