Politics

Community Contributor
2:02 pm
Tue March 19, 2013

A Victim Of Gun Violence On Gun Control

The FBI says a few dealers sell a disproportionate number of firearms.
Credit Wikipedia Commons

On June 22, 2004 I was shot point blank with a .45-caliber gun as I entered a subway station in Astoria Queens. The bullet entered my back and rattled around, destroying my hip. It had just enough inertia to come to a stop after puncturing the femoral artery. Nobody was ever prosecuted for my shooting. Meanwhile, I suffered for six years before being diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder.

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Medicaid Expansion
1:00 pm
Tue March 19, 2013

Florida Republican Leaders Under Fire For Rejecting Medicaid Expansion Plan

After rejecting Gov. Rick Scott's plan to expand Medicaid in both the Florida House and Senate this month, Republican legislative leaders were hit with criticism from their Democratic counterparts.
Credit Stuart Miles / freedigitalphotos.net

When they voted on Medicaid expansion in Florida this month, Florida legislative leaders mostly organized along party lines. Now, the Republicans are getting heat from their Democratic counterparts in the House.

According to the News Service of Florida,

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Transportation
10:00 am
Tue March 19, 2013

How Much Time Do You Spend In Transit? An Interactive Map Of South Florida

From the interactive map found below. Big thanks to our friends at WNYC and Transportation Nation for this

There is a lot of discontent among South Florida residents when it comes to our transit system-- both among drivers and public transit commuters. But according to data from the Census, it could be a lot worse.

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Questions From Town Hall
8:00 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Campaign Contributions Bill Touches A Nerve That Lawmakers Are Already Addressing

THE PROBLEM: This is what worries some of WLRN-Miami Herald News audience -- money and its effect on politics and legislation.
Credit gnerk on Flickr

  TALLAHASSEE -- The Florida House and Senate are taking ethics and elections seriously this year. Bills to widen voting opportunities by restoring pre-2011 early voting days and hours are making their way through both chambers.

But there's a bill in the House that would originally have increased campaign contribution limits from their current $500 to $10,000.

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Ethics And Politics
6:05 am
Tue March 19, 2013

Ethics Reform In Florida Called 'A Mixed Bag'

The Senate convenes on the opening day of the legislative session to pass an ethics reform bill. Some say the bill actually weakens ethics rules.
Credit LaCrai Mitchell/WLRN-Miami Herald News

At the WLRN Miami Herald Town Hall meeting last month, Barbara Ricano from Sunrise wanted to know:

“After so many ethics violations and repeated ethical issues involving campaigns and elected officials, why are the consequences so minor? Why is there no real teeth to any of the penalties?”

Members of the ethics commission have complained that while they have the ability to fine office holders who commit violations, they don’t have the authority to collect those fines.

Florida Senate President Don Gaetz wants to change that.

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Session 2013
10:00 am
Mon March 18, 2013

The Best App To Keep Tabs On Your State Legislators

It would be nice to know more about state politics.  But who can keep track of all those committees and subcommittees, you say.  And all the House and Senate bills with long names and random numbers – and who is my legislator anyway?

You could go to the official state websites to find your legislators and proposed laws

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Politics
1:00 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

Capitol Press Corps Lampoons Lawmakers For A Good Cause

Tallahassee Bureau Chiefs Steve Bousquet of the Tampa Bay Times and Mary Ellen Klas of the Miami Herald as "Eyewitless News" anchors
Margie Menzel/News Service of Florida

The 58th (Sometimes) Annual Capitol Press Corps Skits took the stage at The Moon nightclub in Tallahassee this week.

Members of the media lampooned lawmakers - and themselves – while raising money for the Barbara Frye Scholarship fund.

The crowd was treated to skits with titles like “Ethics Reform School,” “Jenny Wants Respect” (poking fun at Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll, whose resignation was announced the next day), and “Rick Should Retire.”

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Gambling
12:42 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

House Panel Votes To Outlaw Internet Cafes

Reacting to an Internet gambling scandal that forced Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll to resign this week, the Florida House gambling committee today (Friday 3/15) approved a bill that outlaws gambling machines commonly used in strip mall Internet cafes and adult arcades.

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The Florida Roundup
12:00 pm
Fri March 15, 2013

A New Pope And Allied Veterans: What You Should Know From This Week's News

Jennifer Carroll resigned from her post as lieutenant governor after an investigation uncovered that a charity she had worked for had defrauded the public and government agencies.
Credit Gage Skidmore

On the week's The Florida Roundup:

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Politics
2:37 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Rep. Fasano: Medicaid Expansion 'Would Save Hundreds Of Millions Of Dollars'

Rep. Mike Fasano, R-New Port Richey, says the Florida Legislature had two years to craft an alternative plan for Medicaid expansion and chose not to.
Credit myfloridahouse.gov

Now that legislative committees have voted not to expand Medicaid, House and Senate leaders want to look at alternatives that might still utilize federal funds.

New Port Richey Republican Rep. Mike Fasano is not towing the party line.

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Jennifer Carroll
10:00 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Internet Cafe Gambling Scandal Overshadow Florida Lieutenant Governor Jennifer Carroll's Resignation

Jennifer Carroll has stepped down from her role as Lieutenant Governor in Florida.
Credit www.flgov.com/meet-the-lt-governor/

Jennifer Carroll's days as lieutenant governor and presumed running mate for Gov. Rick Scott's reelection campaign may already have been numbered when she resigned this week because of her connection to an Internet gambling scandal.

Meanwhile, the investigation of  a purported charity called Allied Veterans of the World promises to overshadow the political shakeup in Tallahassee and lead to a big change in Florida's gambling landscape.

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Politics
6:00 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Technically, There's Nothing Stopping You From Texting And Driving In Florida – Yet

Florida is one of only 11 states that doesn't prohibit texting and driving. But drivers whose texting leads to an accident and death would be guilty of homicide under a bill filed this week in the Senate and expected to soon show up in the House.
Credit poka0059 / Flickr

After several failed bills and a decade’s worth of debate, texting and driving remains legal in Florida – and the most recently proposed bill wouldn’t change that. But drivers could be charged with vehicular homicide in the case of an accident.

According to the News Service of Florida,

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Community Contributor
2:01 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

The Florida Public Records Act: A Quick-Start Guide To Open Government

Florida law allows citizens access to all state records that don't have a specific exemption.
Credit Wikipedia Commons

The Florida Public Records Act, also known as F.S. 119, is straightforward:  All state, county and municipal records are open for personal inspection and copying by any person. And it is the duty of each agency to provide you with access to public records.

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Latin America
1:00 pm
Wed March 13, 2013

With Venezuela Still In Mourning, Campaign Season Begins Again

Antonio Delgado
Credit Twitter @DelgadoAntonioM

WLRN's Phil Latzman talks with El Nuevo Herald reporter Antonio Delgado about the upcoming presidential election in Venezuela

With the country still in mourning over the death of Hugo Chavez, election season has begun again in Venezuela.

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Medicaid Expansion
10:00 am
Wed March 13, 2013

Florida Hospital Association Won't Accept That Medicaid Will Not Be Expanded

CAREGIVERS: The delegation from Ocala's Munroe Regional Medical Center. Lynette Johnson is third from the left.
Credit Rick Stone

Burdened with the expense of medical care for more than a million uninsured Floridians, the Florida Hospital Association isn't ready to accept that Medicaid won't be expanded in Florida under Obamacare.

Scarcely a day after a Florida Senate Select Committee voted down the Medicaid plan, the association had mobilized healthcare providers and patients under the banner "The Florida Remedy" to make their case public.

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