Politics

Obamacare
2:46 pm
Thu October 3, 2013

Small Businesses May Find Insurance Relief In Exchanges

An employee of Covered California works in the newly opened call center in Rancho Cordova, Calif. Covered California is the state's new health insurance exchange.
Rich Pedroncelli AP

Originally published on Thu October 3, 2013 2:11 pm

Walk down the carpeted hallways of Westwind Media in Burbank, Calif., and it's common to hear the odd explosion, the hum of traffic or a burst of gunfire.

It's here in these edit bays that small feature films and TV dramas like the ABC hits Grey's Anatomy and Scandal and CBS's Person of Interest get primped and polished for prime-time viewing.

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Zoning
10:43 am
Thu October 3, 2013

Walmart Moves One Step Closer To Breaking Ground In Midtown Miami

Opponents of the proposed Walmart made their presence known.
Credit Wilson Sayre

A battle over plans to build a new Walmart in Midtown Miami continued Wednesday night before the city's Planning, Zoning and Appeals Board.

Although both sides of the issue attended the meeting, the focus instead was squarely on the numbers, two in particular: 21 and 27. These are the zoning ordinances that govern the use and design of land in midtown.                                                         

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Americas
7:30 am
Thu October 3, 2013

'Castrocare' Divides Doctors In Cuba, Brazil

Cuba is sending thousands of badly needed doctors to Brazil, but Brazil's medical establishment has sought to block the program. Here, Cuban Dr. Yocelin Macias treats a patient in the capital Brasilia on Aug. 30.
Eraldo Peres AP

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 9:48 am

Call it "Castrocare." Cuba's former leader Fidel Castro sent doctors abroad for decades to work throughout Latin America and as far away as Africa.

In some cases, like Haiti, the medical missions were seen as purely humanitarian. In other places, like Venezuela, it was a form of barter that provided Cuba with subsidized oil imports.

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Business
2:52 pm
Wed October 2, 2013

Florida Lawmakers Delay Highly Anticipated Gambling Study

Credit Wikipedia.org

A $400,000 gambling report will be delayed because it is too confusing and needs to be reviewed for accuracy, according to Senate Gaming Committee Chairman Garrett Richter, R-Naples.

The final portions of a three-part study by Spectrum Gaming Group were due to the Legislature on Tuesday, the same day executives at the New Jersey-based gambling research firm asked for another 30 days to complete the study conducted with its partner Regional Economic Models Inc., or REMI.

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Natural Resources
9:43 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Florida-Georgia Water Dispute Goes To U.S. High Court As Seafood Industry Suffers

Credit apalachicolabay.org

Florida filed a lawsuit Tuesday in the U.S. Supreme Court in a long-running battle with Georgia over water withdrawals that have damaged Apalachicola Bay, but it may be too late to help the Franklin County seafood workers who were already struggling to survive.

Gov. Rick Scott and Attorney General Pam Bondi followed through on an August announcement that Florida would seek injunctive relief so more water would flow to the bay, which collapsed last year in the face of a historic drought and dwindling releases of freshwater from Georgia.

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Economy
8:00 am
Wed October 2, 2013

How Incentives For Film, TV Production In Florida Are Drying Up

The final episode of Burn Notice being shot behind the former Miami Herald Building.
Miami-Dade Office of Film & Entertainment

Now that “Burn Notice” has wrapped up seven successful seasons, will a new show step in to send the world a postcard of Miami every week?

The USA Network production ended its run recently while ratings were still strong. Thanks to a worldwide audience, it’s likely to live for years in syndication.

But the end of the show, as well as A&E’s The Glades and Starz’ Magic City this summer, leaves a void in Miami’s economy. A lot of folks made money off these productions selling props, renting cars, catering food, cleaning costumes and working on-camera.

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Americas
6:00 am
Wed October 2, 2013

Why Uruguay Is Latin America's Marijuana Reform Laboratory

La Mano (The Hand), a modernist sculpture at Punta del Este, is one of Uruguay's best known landmarks.
Credit Flickr

This article was originally published in October and has been updated.

Uruguayans love it when you tell them what a resort paradise Punta del Este is. Or how tasty the country’s Tannat wine is. Or what a stable democracy their small nation (pop. 3.5 million) has turned out to be.

What they don’t like is to hear Uruguay called, as many do label it today, “the Switzerland of South America.” Not that Uruguayans dislike Switzerland. But many if not most of them think the comparison is cliché, exaggerated, inaccurate, condescending.

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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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Americas
7:43 am
Mon September 30, 2013

Holy Smokes, Batman, You're Protesting In Brazil!

An anti-government demonstrator dressed as Batman carries a Brazilian flag at a protest during Brazil's Independence Day celebrations in Rio de Janeiro earlier this month. The protesters called on the government to provide better security, education, health and public services.
Ricardo Moraes Reuters/Landov

Originally published on Tue October 8, 2013 9:52 am

It's not Carnival in Rio de Janeiro, but people are dressing up anyway.

A group of Brazilian protesters have been coming out in costume at demonstrations against Rio's governor, Sergio Cabral. There's the masked crusader Batman, of course, but also a motley assortment of other characters, including Captain Jack Sparrow from the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.

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Campaign Finance
6:21 pm
Fri September 27, 2013

Seminole Tribe, U.S. Sugar Among Big Donors To Gov. Scott Re-Election Committee

Governor Rick Scott
Credit Flickr

It's been a big month so far for the political committee amassing a war chest for Gov. Rick Scott's re-election bid.

The Seminole Tribe of Florida, approaching an end to a key part of its exclusive gambling compact with the state, dropped $500,000 into the Tallahassee-based "Let's Get to Work" committee earlier this month, while United States Sugar Corporation added another $100,000 this week.

The money is just some of the $2.31 million that has poured into the political committee since the start of the month. For the year, the committee has picked up $11.9 million.

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Americas
11:00 am
Fri September 27, 2013

How Miami (And The U.S.) Are Becoming Latin America

A homeless man in Miami.
Credit Surrender Ministries

There's an old joke about Miami: Latin Americans love to visit the city because it's so close to the United States.

Then there’s the chestnut about Miami being the capital of Latin America. Or, Miami is Latin America where the phones work. And so on.

The point is, Miami takes pride in saying, We are Latin America as much as we are America. And that’s a good thing.

Except when it’s not.

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The Florida Roundup
9:00 am
Fri September 27, 2013

The Florida Roundup: Obamacare, Common Core And Capriles

 

Florida led the fight against Obamacare, but open enrollment for new health insurance exchanges begins next week in Florida.  

But with the federal government running the exchanges, have Florida leaders divorced themselves from the national health plan?

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Health Care
5:39 pm
Thu September 26, 2013

'How Much Will Obamacare Cost Me?' Try Our Calculator

No envelope backs required for this health care calculation.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Fri October 11, 2013 3:13 pm

On Tuesday, if all goes according to plan, the federal health law's marketplaces for individual health insurance are scheduled to open for business.

Nearly all Americans will be required to have health insurance starting Jan. 1, 2014, or else they'll be liable for a tax penalty.

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Americas
11:20 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Capriles in Miami: Are Venezuelans For Henrique Or Just Against Nicolás?

Venezuelan presidential candidate Henrique Capriles (left) responds to a question from WLRN Americas Correspondent Tim Padgett (right) on Capriles TV on Sept. 17.
Credit YouTube

I know Henrique Capriles speaks decent English. So because I work for English-language radio, I asked him during his visit to Miami last week if I could put a question to him en inglés.

“Go ahead,” he told me. “But I’ll answer it in Spanish.”

I’d forgotten one of Capriles’ rules as the political opposition leader of Venezuela: To keep the ruling socialist revolution back home from branding you as a puppet of the U.S. “empire,” it’s best to avoid being recorded speaking yanqui – especially when you’re in Miami, the counterrevolutionary capital.

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Health Care
9:58 am
Wed September 25, 2013

Broward Defies Gov. Scott, Allows Obamacare Counseling; Miami-Dade Up Next

Credit PATRICIA BORNS / For Miami Herald

Broward County commissioners countermanded an order from the governor on Tuesday, throwing open its health department offices for meetings between the uninsured and trained Affordable Care Act advisers.

Governor Rick Scott had previously put the buildings off limits for Obamacare counseling, saying insurance seekers might become identity theft victims.

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