Wilson Sayre

Reporter

Wilson Sayre was born and bred in Raleigh, N.C., home of the only real barbecue in the country (we're talking East here). She graduated from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, where she studied Philosophy.

Sayre took a year off school to live in a Zen monastery in Japan and quickly realized that a life of public radio would be a bit more forgiving. Upon returning to the States, she helped launch a news program at UNC’s college-radio station, WXYC. Through error and error, she taught herself how to make radio stories.

She worked with NPR member station WUNC in Chapel Hill, interning for The Story with Dick Gordon. Then she went on to help to run WUNC's Youth Radio Institute, teaching at-risk teenagers how to make radio.

Sayre likes to keep chickens, pickle okra and make sound collages.

Sayre initially came down to WLRN in 2013 for a reporting fellowship. After that, she decided she couldn't leave. She's continued her a mission to get more Miamians to wear overalls and say y'all.

Ways to Connect

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

What do you get when you combine 20 miniature movie sets, three-dozen puppets, a string quartet, three turntables and five video cameras?

Miami Herald

Once every 20 years a group of people gets together to change the Florida Constitution, the most fundamental law of the state. That’s happening right now and anyone can be a part of those discussions as the group holds two meeting in South Florida.

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Most people in Florida who get food stamps are required to work in order to keep them.

A bill (HB 23) that’s slated to be heard by the full state House of Representatives would increase the penalties if people fail to meet those requirements. A now-competing bill in the state Senate would strike these penalties.

Across the country, people have an estimated $10 billion  riding on the outcome of the men’s NCAA basketball championship.

Only a tiny part of that is being done legally, roughly 3 percent, according to the American Gaming Association. And while some states’ gambling laws are a bit gray, Florida’s gambling laws don’t leave a lot of questions on the matter.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

New rules on how legal challenges to newly drawn legislative districts would work cleared their first hurdle in the Florida House on Wednesday after the full Senate passed along its version of the same bill.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

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When we imagine laws and when talk about them, most of us probably don’t picture the paper they’re written on or the specific words used in them.

But most cities have an actual book of laws. A lot of words in the City of Miami’s version of that book refer to men. Thursday, the city is considering a measure that would replace those words with gender-neutral substitutes and print a whole new code book.

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Florida allows some of the easiest access to government records and meetings of any state in the country under the state's Sunshine Laws. 

People have a right to access state documents like minutes from meetings between government officials, foster care case files and environmental studies. Government meetings for the most part are open to the public for anyone to attend.

Miami Herald

Every 20 years, a 37-person commission comes up with a list of amendments to the Florida Constitution.

The next cohort of the Constitutional Revision Commission (CRC) met on Monday for the first time,  in the Florida Senate chambers in Tallahassee.

The group will have a year to travel around the state and figure out what kinds of changes need to be made to the constitution. It already scheduled visits to Orange, Miami-Dade and Palm Beach Counties.

Miami Herald

Death Row inmate Mike Lambrix has lost his appeal for a new sentence.

Lambrix was one of the subjects in the WLRN documentary Cell 1, where we looked at Florida’s death penalty and the limbo it was in for more than a year.

Florida Department of Corrections

UPDATED 3/10/2017 11:05 a.m. - This post has been updated with the most recent Senate vote, which means the new death penalty rules have passed the Florida legislature and will be sent to the governor's desk for signature.

One final piece of the puzzle that held up the death penalty in Florida for years is almost back in place.

Roberto Koltun / Miami Herald

A massive higher education bill became the first real piece of legislation heard by the full Florida Senate Wednesday.

The legislation would, among other things, change how the performance of state colleges and universities is calculated, something that according to critics would benefit of more traditional four-year universities.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Robert Asencio’s office is in what he jokingly refers to as the nosebleeds—on the 14th floor of the Florida Capitol building. A poster for the Miami Book Fair is propped against a couch, not much has made it onto the walls yet.

Will convicted felons be allowed to vote again in Florida after completing their sentences?

That is the subject of a proposed constitutional amendment that could go to voters as early as the 2018 general election. Monday, the Florida Supreme Court reviewed the language of that amendment, moving it one step closer to the ballot.

Wilson Sayre / WLRN

Is Krome Detention Center an immigration processing center or a prison for immigrants?

That’s the question University of Miami students looked at as part of a new traveling exhibit about incarceration in America called “States of Incarceration.”

The exhibit currently lines the walls of the Wesley Foundation gallery on the University of Miami Campus. Each panel of the exhibit tackles a question, like “who is the death penalty for?” and “does architecture shape punishment?”

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Why should a community fund free legal aid services for its low-income residents?

The Florida Bar Foundation is trying to make the case that these programs, which provide representation by civil legal aid advocates in cases directly affecting families, homes, incomes, jobs and access to vital services, should be funded because they are  good for the economy.

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