Rick Stone

Reporter

Rick Stone has been a journalist in Florida for most of his career. He's worked in newspapers and television but believes that nothing works as well as public radio. He and his wife, Mary Jane Stone, live in Broward County.

Ways To Connect

Rick Stone

For a lot of Florida voters and a lot of environmentalists, one of the big disappointments of this chaotic legislative session is the apparent fate of Amendment 1. That's the ballot initiative that makes three-quarters of a billion dollars available every year to buy and protect sensitive lands. But it's a shopping trip the Legislature doesn't feel like making.

Flickr Creative Commons

  TALLAHASSEE -- State House Republicans emerged from a closed-door meeting on Tuesday apparently still resolved to oppose expanding Medicaid for 800,000 low-income Floridians.

Meanwhile, the Senate, in an unusual workshop session to hash out the Medicaid problem and its implications for Florida's hospitals and its economy, was hearing from the state's chief economist that the House position threatens an economic catastrophe that begins with Florida's safety net hospitals.

Triple Five

Miami-Dade County is about to acquire 82 acres of state land that could one day be the site of the largest mall in America. 

The vacant land is just west of Miami Lakes in an area surrounded by the Florida Turnpike, Interstate 75 and Northwest 170 Street. That’s where development company Triple Five wants to build a combination shopping mall and entertainment complex that would supplant its other big property, the Mall of America in Minneapolis, as the largest mall in the nation.

Rick Stone

Every county in South Florida has big problems for the Legislature to solve this year. Some of them you may know about, some are pretty obscure. But all found their way on to lists of legislative priorities that the various county delegations brought with them this year to Tallahassee.

Murphy For Florida

There's only one declared candidate so far for the Marco Rubio U.S. Senate seat. And he's already earned a vote of "no confidence" from a wing of his own party. 

Patrick Murphy is a former Republican who switched parties in 2012 and defeated arch conservative Allen West for South Florida's northernmost congressional seat.

Miami Herald

  The Supreme Court will examine Florida's capital punishment system in its next term, and legal experts believe Florida's death penalty itself may be in danger.

A solution could be in a legislative fix now moving slowly through the Capitol in Tallahassee. It's been passed by one Senate committee but the House is showing little interest in the companion bill.

Doug McIntosh/Flickr

Florida legislators this year may expand the prescribing authority of physician assistants and nurse practitioners to include controlled substances. The move responds to Florida's reported doctor shortage and its developing flood of patients with new Obamacare health policies.

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The stars seem to be aligning for Medicaid expansion in the Florida Legislature this year.  After two years of blunt refusals to even consider it, some top Republicans, like Miami State Sen. Anitere Flores are saying the time has come.

"And what's interesting," Flores said after a Monday  interview with the Miami Herald editorial board, "is that you have the buy-in from the business community, from the private sector, from your nontraditional supporters of government funding."

Andrew T. Sullivan / Flickr Creative Commons

Local leaders in West Palm Beach are looking forward to hundreds of jobs and a fatter economy from a proposed $135 million spring training baseball stadium that's nearing approval on a couple of fronts.

But, they say, they'll give it up in a minute if scientists find it’s a threat to their drinking water.

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