If I Were Mayor
12:21 pm
Tue October 1, 2013

If I Were Mayor: 'Miami Lakes Against The World!'

Cows roam in a field across the street from Publix supermarket in Miami Lakes.
Credit Elaine Chen

As part of our If I Were Mayor project, we asked Miami Lakes residents what they would do if they were in charge of their town.

Miami Lakes is holding a special election today to choose a new mayor after the suspension of Mayor Michael Pizzi. Pizzi was one of three mayors arrested last month on corruption charges.

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Volunteerism
11:00 am
Tue October 1, 2013

How Broward Teens Make Hospital Stays Less Confusing For Seniors

Volunteer Madison Herin hopes to become a doctor one day.
Marva Hinton

This summer Holy Cross Hospital in Fort Lauderdale expanded a volunteer program that brings teenagers and older patients together.

It’s designed to help the patients avoid delirium,  a common condition that can make hospital stays unpleasant and even frightening.

During a typical day for  volunteers in the Tender Loving Care-Advanced program, they fan out into patient rooms bringing cards, magazines, dice, books and newspapers.

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The Sunshine Economy
8:17 am
Tue October 1, 2013

The Sunshine Economy: Obamacare Comes To South Florida

Credit Tom Hudson

Click the play button above and listen to WLRN's hour-long special, "The Sunshine Economy: Obamacare Comes To South Florida," with host Tom Hudson. The episode is part of an ongoing series examining key industries of the South Florida economy. Shows air Mondays at 9:00 a.m. on 91.3 FM.

These are the faces of the uninsured in South Florida. Eddie Escobar, Kwami Livingston and Jersey Garcia (left to right) are three of the more than one million people under the age of 65 in the counties of Miami-Dade and Broward who are living without health insurance.

Beginning Tuesday, they will be able to shop for health coverage and possibly qualify for a tax credit in order to meet the individual mandate of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which goes into effect next year.

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Politics
8:15 am
Tue October 1, 2013

A Look At The Impact Of The U.S. Shutdown On South Florida

Social Security checks will still be mailed and the exchanges that are central to the the new health care law will still kick into gear Tuesday. But an estimated 800,000 federal employees are being told they can't work because the politicians haven't been able to agree on a way to fund the government.
Credit Fang Zhe /Xinhua/Landov

Much of South Florida may not notice that large parts of the federal government shut down early Tuesday, but Washington’s budget stalemate promises to bring a list of challenges for the region.

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Law
6:00 am
Tue October 1, 2013

Florida's Texting While Driving Ban Takes Effect Amid New Effort To Strengthen It

Despite the new ban on texting while driving, some say the law lacks real teeth.
Credit Creative Commons via Wikipedia User Ed Brown

Florida's new law banning texting while driving went into effect on October 1.

Governor Rick Scott signed SB 52 into law back in May, making Florida the 41st state to ban texting while driving. To some, though, the law does not go far enough.

The brunt of the new law is meant to deter drivers from sending or reading text messages. But it bans pretty much anything that requires "manually typing or entering multiple letters, numbers, symbols, or other characters." So no emailing, searching the Internet, or dialing a phone number.

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Topical Currents
1:00 pm
Mon September 30, 2013

Florida Wage Theft Issues

Donna Ballman
http://twitter.com/EmployeeAtty

09/30/13 - Monday’s Topical Currents examines the issue of wage-theft, particularly among low income and day workers.  But unpaid wages are a widespread problem within other Florida industries, including tourism, retail trade and construction.  Many cases go unreported by workers who can least afford to be shorted.  We’ll have panel of regional experts . . . and take your calls.  That’s Topical Currents . . . Monday at 1pm on WLRN. 

  • Guests/links:
  • Wage Theft Claims, Miami-Dade Consumer Service: 305-375-3677  
  • http://www.miamidade.gov/business/wage-theft.asp
  • Cynthia S Hernandez, Senior Research Associate, Instructor & Director of Internship Programs Research Institute on Social and Economic Policy Center for Labor Research & Studies Florida International University www.risep-fiu.org
  • Jeanette Smith Executive Director South Florida Interfaith Worker Justice Member of the Wage Theft Task Force  www.sfiwj.org
  • Donna M. Ballman, P.A. Employment Attorney  www.ballmanfirm.com

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Business
11:20 am
Mon September 30, 2013

More Than 7 Months After Triumph Fire, Carnival Tries To Correct Course

CEO Arnold Donald of Carnival Corp is the new CEO in the post-Triumph, post-Micky Arison-as-CEO era. He faces the issues rehabilitating it's image and getting customers and travel agents back on its side.
Credit C.W. Griffin / Miami Herald Staff

Smiling children wave. A happy couple dances by the pool. Family members play miniature golf with a view of the ocean, and a man asks a woman to be his wife. There are sunsets, kisses and giant ships serving as backgrounds for vacation snapshots.

“We never forget the moments that matter,” a woman’s voice says. “We hang them on our walls. We share them with everyone we know and hold on to them forever.”

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Health Care
11:14 am
Mon September 30, 2013

South Florida Insurance Rates Will Be Among Lowest In State, Report Says

With more Affordable Care Act health insurance prices available, Broward County residents look to pay the least in the state.
Credit Carl Juste / MIAMI HERALD STAFF

Miami-Dade and Broward County residents who buy health insurance through federally run online marketplaces opening Tuesday will be paying some of the cheapest rates available in Florida, according to federal data released Wednesday.  

A report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shows how many insurance issuers will be offering plans in each county, what tiers those plans will be on and how much the average resident would pay before tax credits in certain tiers.

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Transportation
10:50 am
Mon September 30, 2013

Florida's New Texting While Driving Ban Takes Effect Oct. 1

Experts say that texting while driving makes you 23 times more likely to get into an accident.
Credit IntelFreePress/Flickr

It's official. No more texting and driving in the state of Florida.

Gov. Rick Scott was in South Florida on Tuesday to sign SB 52, legislation championed by Sen. Nancy Detert (R-Venice) for the last four years. 

Under the new law, Florida will join a large majority of states in prohibiting texting while driving. As a secondary offense, however, drivers must be stopped for a separate alleged traffic violation before being ticketed for texting while driving. 

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