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Category archives for: Florida Legislature

16-Member Commission Will ‘Investigate System Failures’ in Parkland School Massacre

| April 23, 2018

The commission will review Florida’s policies for dealing with “active assailants” on school campuses, with a comparison to “best practices” policies around the nation.

Judge Rejects Local Districts’ Challenge of Controversial Law Shifting Money To Charter Schools

| April 20, 2018

The controversy highlights continuing tensions between local school districts and the state about oversight and expansion of charter schools, which are public schools but are often run by private operators.

10 Florida Cities Challenge State Law Barring Local Governments From Passing Gun Ordinances

| April 3, 2018

Elected officials from 10 Florida cities are challenging an NRA-backed state law that imposes strict penalties on local lawmakers for enacting gun ordinances.

New Law Gives Property Owners Right to Restrict Beach Access. Flagler Working On Protecting Public’s “Customary Use”

| March 29, 2018

The new and unusual Florida law allows beachfront property owners the right to wall off or restrict dry-sand areas from public use, but Flagler government intends to protect that “customary use” despite the law.

Scott Signs Bill Targeting Opioid Addiction, Imposing Limits on Prescriptions

| March 19, 2018

The bill is designed, at least in part, to prevent patients from getting addicted to prescription painkillers and then turning to street drugs such as heroin and fentanyl.

Are Drug Addicts Less Valuable Than Students? Florida Says Yes, Wrongly.

| March 18, 2018

Politically there may be a big difference between students’ safety and drug addicts. Ethically, there is none, and financially, addicts are being lethally short-changed.

As in Flagler, Few Districts Embrace Arming “Marshals,” So Money May Shift to School Cops

| March 18, 2018

In Flagler County, Superintendent Jim Tager and the school board said they would not support arming anyone who is not, in essence, as trained as school deputies must be to carry a weapon.

Post-Hurricane Initiatives Fall Short of Measures to Prevent Fuel Crises In Next Storms

| March 13, 2018

A strategic fuel-reserve task force and using rail-tank cars to bring fuel into evacuation areas to avoid a repeat of runs on gas stations were among initiatives that failed at this year’s legislative session.

From Guns To Opioids To Education, A Legislative Session That Got A Few Things Done

| March 12, 2018

The session became dominated in February by the aftermath of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Broward County.

Lawmakers Pass $88.7 Billion Budget But With Few of Flagler’s or Local Cities’ Priorities

| March 12, 2018

Palm Coast and the county did not get any extra appropriations, nor did Flagler’s county court system get extra help for Judge Melissa Moore-Stens.

NRA Files Challenge Moments After Gov. Scott Signs School-Safety and Gun-Control Bill

| March 9, 2018

The new law raises the permissible age to buy rifles from 18 to 21 and imposes a three-day waiting period for the purchase of rifles and other long guns, among other provisions.

Florida Increases Per-Student Funding By $101, Much Of It For Security and Mental Health

| March 9, 2018

The annual school funding formula would include a new category for mental-health funding with $69 million and increase the school-coop pot by $97 million, to $162 million.

House Edges Closer to Vote on Bill Mixing Guns With School Safety and New Limits

| March 6, 2018

Those younger than 21 would be prohibited from buying rifles, others would have a 3-day waiting period. Coaches and others could be “deputized” as school marshals.

Another Exhausting But Short-Term Victory For Flagler Government as Vacation-Rental Deregulation Fails Again

| March 6, 2018

Flagler County government had staunchly opposed lawmakers’ attempts to eliminate local regulation of short-term vacation rentals, regulations crafted in 2014 largely at Flagler’s behest.

Senate Passes Safety Plan, Including Armed Teacher Program and $97 Million for More School Cops

| March 5, 2018

Flagler County would be in line for a substantial increase in dollars allocated for school resource deputies, and would have the authority to implement a school marshal program.

For Sheriff and Flagler Schools, Clear Accord: No to Arming Teachers, Yes to More Deputies

| March 5, 2018

At a joint news conference later this week, Sheriff Rick Staly and Superintendent Jim Tager will outline new security measures and initiatives and a plan for additional school deputies, but no weaponizing of teachers.

First Responders in Florida Aren’t Covered for PTSD. That May Change After Parkland.

| March 5, 2018

Like many states, Florida does not provide lost wages to first responders disabled with PTSD. A bill that would change that is now gaining momentum after 17 people were killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School last month.

Florida Senate Backs Arming Teachers And Rejects Assault Weapons Ban

| March 4, 2018

The Senate plan and a similar House proposal would allow school boards to decide whether they want to implement a “marshal” proposal to arm certain teachers.

Gov. Scott Pleads For More Cops In Schools as Safety Plans Provoke Divisions

| March 2, 2018

Scott’s $500 million package would require, among other things, school boards to assign a law enforcement officer to each school and at least one resource officer for every 1,000 students.

Tougher Texting-While-Driving Law Passes House Overwhelmingly But Stalls In Senate

| March 1, 2018

Appropriations Chairman Rob Bradley has indicated the proposal likely won’t appear in the Appropriations Committee before the legislative session ends next week.

Ban on Assault-Type Guns Fails in Raucous Hearing, Training and Arming Teachers Passes

| February 27, 2018

The intense debate came during a Senate Rules Committee hearing on a broad package addressing school safety, guns and mental health, in response to this month’s massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland that left 17 people, including 14 students, dead.

Lawmakers Craft Law Allowing Teachers To Carry Guns In Florida Schools

| February 23, 2018

The controversial measure would allow trained teachers to bring guns to schools, a concept that has divided Republican politicians and faces opposition from Democrats and educators.

School Shooting Survivors Demand Change in Tallahassee, But NRA-Backed Bills Only “Paused”

| February 21, 2018

Students turned into activists as they cried, pleaded and argued with lawmakers Wednesday in the state Capitol, but they made limited gains, if any, with pro-gun bills merely paused.

Teacher Unions Protected But Public Funding of Private School Students Advances

| February 20, 2018

The Florida Senate rejected a House proposal to dissolve teacher unions if membership falls below a certain point, but also approved a version of a school voucher program funding private school students.

Gun Control Could Become a Key Issue in Florida’s Elections

| February 19, 2018

Major political donors on both sides plan to use support for “common-sense” legislation as a litmus test for candidates during the 2018 midterm elections.

Flagler Sheriff and County Officials Worry That Prison Reforms Could Shift Inmates,
and Costs, to County

| February 19, 2018

A spate of criminal-justice reform bills in the Florida Senate has Flagler’s sheriff and a county commissioner worried about what that could mean for the local jail population and budgets.

Deal Could End Wrangling Over Trauma Centers Around Florida

| February 16, 2018

The Legislature has wrangled with whether to continue with current regulations or to allow a more competitive environment that would increase the number of trauma facilities.

Flagler Airport Chief Roy Sieger Calls Fuel Tax Cut Proposed By Renner Committee “Ridiculous,” and Loses

| February 15, 2018

Airport Director Sieger spoke before Paul Renner’s Ways and Means Committee, but Renner, the Palm Coast Republican, voted with the committee to approve the tax cut.

Florida Was Eyeing Fast-Tracking Concealed Weapon Licenses Without Background Checks

| February 15, 2018

A proposal that would allow some concealed-weapons license applications to be approved when background checks have not been completed was put on hold Thursday because of the deadly high-school shooting in Broward County.

Florida Democrats Speak of Margaret Good’s Victory as a Sign of a Coming “Blue Wave”

| February 14, 2018

Margaret Good’s victory on Tuesday, winning a Florida House seat in Sarasota County, represents the 36th time a Republican seat has flipped Democratic since the 2016 election.

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