Lakshmi Singh is midday newscaster for NPR. She joined NPR's award-winning Newscast Unit in 2000.

North Country Public Radio/Champlain Valley reporter for the Innovation Trail

Sarah Harris covers the Champlain Valley for Innovation Trail. She was an assistant teacher for the first class of the Transom Story Workshop in Woods Hole, Massachusetts.  Sarah's work has aired on NPR's All Things Considered, Morning Edition and Weekend Edition. Sarah is a 2010 recipient of the Middlebury Fellowship in Environmental Journalism, has lived abroad in the Maldives and Nepal, and is a graduate of Middlebury College.

Norman Van Aken's A Word On Food
8:00 am
Sat November 2, 2013

(S)wine Snobs

Click the play button to hear the radio version of this post by Norman Van Aken.

When the woman at the butcher counter asked Jimmy the Cutter, “do you have a nice butt?” Jimmy didn’t hesitate and said, “My wife kind of digs it.”

The lady pushed her walker aside to get a better look at the pork in Jimmy’s case, pretending not to hear him. Her faded alligator purse fell open to reveal a half empty carton of Lucky Strikes and a copy of Reader’s Digest. He looked at me and rolled his eyes toward the crease of his paper deli hat.

Read more
Opinion: Kelley's Korner
11:02 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Bad Move, Mr. Crist

Kelley Mitchell thinks former Gov. Charlie Crist made a press faux-pas with his Friday announcement.
Credit Mike Cohen / Flickr/Creative Commons

The first time I met Charlie Crist, he was the state Attorney General. It was at a Florida Department of Law Enforcement news conference in their then-new digs along the Dolphin Expressway near Florida's Turnpike.

I'm fairly certain it was one of those Joint Agency Task Force announcements that had something to do with Identity Theft (Hint: "We're against it.")

So am I, by the way. It can be debilitating.

Read more
Politics
7:01 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Former Gov. Crist Enters Florida's Gubernatorial Race

Credit rawstory.com

Former Gov. Charlie Crist made it official Friday: He will run for his old job again in 2014, setting up a potential battle with Republican Gov. Rick Scott for the state's highest office.

Crist, who is set to announce his candidacy Monday morning at Albert Whitted Park in St. Petersburg, quietly filed his paperwork Friday with state election officials. The move allows him to begin raising money immediately. He becomes an instant front-runner in a Democratic primary that also includes former state Senate Minority Leader Nan Rich of Weston.

Read more
News
6:04 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

State Working To Fix Glitch-Ridden Unemployment Website

Florida's Department of Economic Opportunity provides unemployment benefits worth up to $275 a week to more than 200,000 Floridians. But glitches in the new system are preventing thousands of people from signing up for benefits.
Credit Reilly Shiarella/flickr

Florida has a new website for unemployment claims, and much like the federal government’s health insurance website, it’s plagued with problems.

The Reemployment Assistance Connect System – known as CONNECT – is where jobless Floridians must go to file their claims. It’s overseen by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

Read more
Jackson Health System
5:55 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

County Hospital Seeks Taxpayer Help To Attract Obamacare Customers

Now that formerly uninsured South Floridians are shopping for coverage on Healthcare.gov, Jackson wants to lure them with upgrades.

Jackson Health System wants to go after formerly uninsured individuals now receiving coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Because insured customers have increasingly been choosing hospitals with snazzier facilities, Jackson is asking Miami-Dade County voters to raise their own property taxes to cover a top-to-bottom remake of the hospital system.

If the referendum passes on Tuesday, JHS will issue bonds to raise $830 million for the renovations. The bond debt would add about $50 to the average county taxpayer's yearly tax bill.

Read more
Public Policy
5:22 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

Florida Food Stamps Receive Cuts

With possible further cuts to food stamps, Florida food insecurity is a concern.

Cuts to food stamps for over 3.5 million Floridians went into effect Friday, Nov. 1. And more could be coming through the pipeline soon.

Increases in food stamps, which are part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), were approved as part of the 2009 Recovery Act’s temporary boost to the economy. And those increases have run out.

For a family of four, the cuts translate to $36 per month or a total loss of $396 per year. Cuts to benefits in Florida are the third largest.

Read more
South Florida Arts Beat
1:00 pm
Fri November 1, 2013

IKO-IKO Celebrates 30 Years with a Live Performance at WLRN

IKO IKO at Pineapple Groove
http://www.iko-iko.com/

11/01/13 - Next time on South Florida Arts Beat, you can hear another of our exciting, monthly studio performances. This time we’re honored to feature South Florida’s IKO IKO on their 30thanniversary. Led by Graham Wood Drout, they’ll perform their original “urban swamp music.” Blues, Rock, R&B and Jazz with a touch of New Orleans rhythm simmer in their “musical roux.” Let the good times roll with Iko Iko.

Read more
The Florida Roundup
11:31 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Is There A Humane Way To Execute?

Miami killer Thomas Knight, one of Florida’s longest-serving prisoners on Death Row, will be executed Dec. 3.

Though the legality of the death penalty is settled, the way that we do it is not. Several Florida death row inmates have filed suit to challenge the state’s use of a drug mix they say won’t prevent excruciating pain during the execution.

Read more

Pages