Politics

Florida Forever Coalition
10:00 am
Sat February 9, 2013

What Gov. Rick Scott's $74.2 Billion Budget Would Mean For South Florida Environmental Projects

Gov. Rick Scott is proposing big boosts for environmental projects in his 2013-2014 budget.
Credit Tax Credits / Flickr Creative Commons

 If Gov. Rick Scott's proposed $74.2 billion budget passes the Legislature intact, it would include $75 million for conservation land projects spearheaded by the Florida Forever Coalition. The 2013-2014 budget also includes $60 million for Everglades restoration and $6.5 million for restoring springs.  

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The Florida Roundup
12:00 pm
Fri February 8, 2013

How The Dolphins Stadium Won State GOP Votes

A bill that would allow public money to help fund renovation for the Sun Life stadium unanimously passed a state Senate committee.
Credit Bogeskov

On the Florida Roundup: The Dolphins jump the first hurdles in their quest for public money to upgrade Sun Life Stadium.  

Rising tides on your street - how sea level rise could cost our region millions

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Marco Rubio
10:00 am
Fri February 8, 2013

On Immigration, Rubio Surrendered To Win

Credit Time

How did Florida U. S. Sen. Marco Rubio seize the leadership of the Republican Party from Paul Ryan, the Minnesota congressman who ran for vice-president with Mitt Romney?

By leading the trend to the party's nose-holding surrender on the immigration issue, argues New York Magazine. Writer Jonathan Chait says Rubio has tapped into a new GOP school of thought, which is that Republicans have no other problems except for immigration.

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Session 2013
9:00 am
Fri February 8, 2013

Death Penalty Bill Dead For The Session

OPPONENTS: State Reps. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda and Matt Gaetz. Gaetz' committee killed her anti-capital punishment bill.

State lawmakers will not  decide whether to abolish the death penalty this year. Rejecting cost, fairness and morality arguments, a House criminal justice subcommittee on Thursday voted down a bill to abolish capital punishment in Florida.

The vote was largely along party lines, with the majority Republicans voting in favor of preserving the death penalty.

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Session 2013
10:00 am
Wed February 6, 2013

Dolphins Stadium Plan's First Approval May Encourage Public Funding For Other Teams

RENOVATIONS: This is what the Dolphins might do with Sun Life Stadium if its funding bill gets passed. Other sports teams would also like tax funding for their own renovation plans.

A Florida Senate committee's smiling approval of the Miami Dolphin's request for stadium renovation money may have set off a flurry of similar campaigns by sports teams and enterprises around the state.

The Senate Commerce and Tourism Committee on Tuesday unanimously approved sales tax breaks that would help the Dolphins finance a $400-million renovation of Sun Life Stadium. The team is still hoping for a penny increase in the hotel bed tax for the rest of the public share of the bill, which it says will be less than half of the total cost.

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Session 2013
7:23 am
Wed February 6, 2013

First Approval For Internet Sales Tax 'Reform'

INTERNET KILLED THE COMPUTER STORE: Senators who voted for the Internet sales tax say it's a fairness issue for traditional retail.

TALLAHASSEE -- An annual effort to collect taxes on Internet sales began again in the Legislature on Tuesday, with a Senate committee agreeing to offset any new money collected with other tax breaks in a bid to appease anti-tax lawmakers.

The Senate Commerce and Tourism Committee approved a measure (SB 316) by committee chairwoman Sen. Nancy Detert, R-Venice, that would require Internet vendors who sell to Florida residents to pay state sales tax.

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Energy
1:22 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

FPL President Says Controversial Nuclear Fee Has Been Good For Jobs And The Economy

Florida Power and Light President Eric Silagy
Credit http://www.nexteraenergy.com/company/bio8.shtml

Phil Latzman's interview with FPL president Eric Silagy.

Florida Power and Light is the state's largest utility serving roughly 4.6 million customers.

Since 2006, FPL customers have been paying what's called a "Nuclear Cost Recovery Fee," which enables the utility to charge in advance for future costs of building and improving nuclear power plants.

Since then, about $320 million has been raised to add 525 megawatts of new power to Turkey Point in South Miami-Dade.  

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Town Hall on Session 2013
10:25 am
Tue February 5, 2013

Ask Us Anything: Archive Of Our Online Chat With Citizens Property Insurance

Despite the absence of any major hurricane for the past several years, property insurance rates have risen in Florida.
Credit cayobo

The price of property insurance in Florida keeps going up --  such that some homeowners are getting second mortgages or dropping coverage all together.  The state created Citizens Property Insurance to be the insurer of last resort for Florida homeowners. But plans to shrink Citizens by loaning money to private insurance companies and allegations of corporate misconduct have sparked outcries by some state officials and the public alike. 

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Session 2013
9:00 am
Tue February 5, 2013

Two Years Later, State Voting Law Fixes Take Root Where The Problem Was Caused

In Tallahassee, a series of proposals to repair the state election system is finding broad support in the Legislature that many say broke the voting process two years ago.

A Senate bill instituting one of the reforms proposed by Secretary of State  Ken Detzner has already been filed and there are clear signals from a House elections subcommittee that it will prepare a bill to launch the rest of them.

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Medicaid
7:07 am
Tue February 5, 2013

Federal Approval Launches Florida's Transition To Medicaid By Managed Care

SENIORS FIRST: Florida's new managed care system for Medicaid could allow some seniors to 'age in place,' rather than move too soon to nursing homes.
Credit Kaiser Health News

TALLAHASSEE -- Federal health officials have approved a key part of Florida's effort to transform its Medicaid program, clearing the way for tens of thousands of seniors across the state to move into managed-care plans.

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Florida Legislature
8:00 am
Mon February 4, 2013

Youth Is No Barrier To Power In Tallahassee

MR. CHAIRMAN: Very young guys run very powerful committees in the Florida House. How did that happen?

Number crunching by a Florida university professor has led to an odd conspiracy theory about the Florida House of Representatives.

Not that Prof. Mark Soskin actually subscribes to the theory himself. As you hear on TV a lot, he's just sayin'.

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The Florida Roundup
12:00 pm
Fri February 1, 2013

Why An FBI Investigation Probably Won't Stop Immigration Reform

GOP opposition to immigration reform has been tempered by their loss of the Latino vote in the 2012 election.
Credit Anuska Sampedro

On the Florida Roundup: New immigration reform proposals are put on the table in Washington. How could a path to citizenship be traveled in immigrant-rich South Florida?   Plus we get the latest update on the FBI raid of a West Palm Beach eye doctor with connections with U.S. Senator Bob Menendez, a sponsor of a bipartisan immigration reform plan.

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Session 2013
9:00 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Scott's $74.2 Billion Budget Sets The Record

RECORD BREAKER: Gov. Rick Scott's proposed budget would put more than a billion new dollars into education.
Credit St. Petersblog

TALLAHASSEE -- Gov. Rick Scott unveiled a record-breaking $74.2 billion budget Thursday, pouring hundreds of millions of additional dollars into public schools, colleges and universities in a proposal that Democrats knocked as a public-relations gimmick.

Scott's plan would boost spending by almost $4 billion in the coming budget year, which begins July 1, with much of the increase heading to education. He said the bump reflected more incoming tax revenue brought on by an economic recovery after the fallout from the Great Recession clouded the budgets of his first two years.

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Immigration Reform
7:16 am
Fri February 1, 2013

Rubio's Tea Party Ties Starting To Fray

AMONG FRIENDS: Tea Party support catapulted candidate Marco Rubio to the U. S. Senate in 2010.
Credit Daron Dean/Tampa Bay Times

U. S. Sen. Marco Rubio's leadership in the movement to reform American immigration policy has complicated his once-cozy relationship with the conservative organization formerly known as the Tea Party.

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Public Insight Network
10:00 am
Thu January 31, 2013

Do You Know Who Your State Legislators Are?

Redistricting last year may have had a role in making it more difficult for PIN members to name their state legislators. Above, a map showing pre-redistricting Senate district boundaries (in red) and current Senate district boundaries (in black).

The state Legislature, perhaps more than Congress, passes laws that have a direct impact on the day-to-day life of a Floridian: how much you pay in sales tax, how much time you have to vote, how you obtain a gun.

Tallahassee is in our lives every day. It's only 480 miles away. And yet, for many in South Florida, it might as well be on another continent. 

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