Tallahassee is full of lobbyists, and they’re in high gear at the Capitol for the final week of the legislative session.
A lobbyist is someone who is hired by a company or organization to convince lawmakers to pass legislation benefiting their clients.
Long-time lobbyist Jack Cory doesn’t stop moving much during the session. His firm’s two-dozen clients include the Florida Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs, Florida Citrus Sports, and the Florida and National Greyhound Associations.
For two months each year,160 men and women elected by Florida voters gather in Tallahassee to make state policies. Everyday during this final week of the legislative session, WLRN-Miami Herald News will be reporting and examining what Florida lawmakers have accomplished, what’s been ignored, and how it will affect you for our special Session 2014: The Sunshine Edition.
State Senate President Don Gaetz likes to introduce House Speaker Will Weatherford as the “taller, smarter, better-looking version of the Weatherford-Gaetz” duo. Their alliance has led to the quick passage of legislation like last year's ethics reform package and this year's sex offender bills. But on several education bills, the two diverge.
For more than a year, the Miami Herald dug through Department of Children & Families records and police reports to find out how and why nearly 500 children died over the past six years after falling through the Florida Department of Children & Families’ protective net.
The investigative series, Innocents Lost, uncovered the disturbing stories and found that the agency had embraced a family preservation philosophy without ensuring all the necessary social services were in place to keep children safe in troubled homes.
Before there was a constitutional amendment to legalize marijuana in Florida on this coming November ballot, there was West Broward Representative Katie Edwards.
She represents parts of Davie, Plantation and Sunrise.
A democrat from District 98 with a background in agriculture and applied economics -- along with a law degree -- Edwards first made a legislative effort to address the possibility of medical marijuana in 2013.
Gabriel García Márquez, who died Thursday at age 87, provided one of the eerier moments of my journalism career.
In 1996, a colleague and I had been conducting a series of interviews with the Colombian Nobel laureate about his newest book, called “News of a Kidnapping.” It was a nonfiction work on his country’s violent drug-crime culture. Shortly after García Márquez sent the final proofs to his publisher, I called him at his Mexico City home and he sounded shaken.
Not one but both Florida Senators came to Doral Thursday morning to show solidarity with the state's large Venezuelan community.
In their bipartisan appearance at the Arepazo Dos restaurant, Democrat Bill Nelson and Republican Marco Rubio said U.S. sanctions against Venezuela's socialist government - which has been widely criticized for its heavy-handed response to anti-government protests - may be a stronger possibility now.
With two weeks to go in the lawmaking session, open government and ethics measures favored by watchdog groups are stalled in the Florida Legislature. There is a two-part concern about citizen access to public records.
The first worry is about the number of public-record exemptions that are pending this year. Barbara Petersen of the First Amendment Foundation says it's a dozen.
"It will be a record number of new exemptions and push the total number of exemptions to both the public records law and the open meetings law close to 1,100," Petersen said.
Join the Miami Herald and WLRN-Miami Herald News for a town hall on how to fix the child welfare system at 6 p.m. Thursday, April 17 at the Doral headquarters of the Herald. Learn more at MiamiHerald.com.
TALLAHASSEE -- A high-profile healthcare bill moving through the Florida House could strip the Miami-Dade County Commission of its authority to make the final decision on labor union contracts at the county’s public hospital system.
The bill originally sought to create new rules for trauma centers, allow skilled nurses to practice independent of physicians, and pave the way for hospitals to use virtual healthcare services.