South Florida

Carlos Barria

South Florida is seeing little rain during its rainy season this year.

Eastern Miami-Dade and Broward counties are drying up and are now considered to be in extreme drought conditions, according to water managers.

So far this year, Miami-Dade was 7 inches below average rainfall and Broward was down more than 8 inches.

Mimi Whitefield / Miami Herald

As the U.S. and Cuba re-establish diplomatic relations today – and open embassies in their respective capitals – all eyes are on Washington D.C. and Havana.

Except perhaps in South Florida. Here, all Cuban politics is local. So we care less about the hot air rising today in the Beltway (where U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Cuban Foreign Minister Bruno Rodríguez will meet) and in La Habana later this summer (when Kerry plans to visit and inaugurate a U.S. embassy there) and more about what this means for Miami-Dade, the Keys, Broward and Palm Beach.

Marco Ugarte / AP

COMMENTARY

Once again, Donald Trump’s got it all wrong.

Mexican immigrants aren’t the problem. Mexican officials are.

Especially all the Mexican officials who live deep inside the pockets of Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, the world’s richest and most wanted drug kingpin. Thanks to them, El Chapo, or “Shorty,” was able to waltz out of Mexico’s most secure penitentiary through a mile-long escape tunnel that’s already being called one of the country’s engineering marvels.

South Florida Residents Weigh In On SCOTUS Marriage Ruling

Jun 26, 2015
Rob O'Neal / Florida Keys News Bureau

Though same-sex marriage in Florida became legal in January, South Florida residents are participating in the buzz following Friday’s Supreme Court ruling. A 5-4 vote established that same-sex couples can now marry nationwide.

Residents in Wilton Manors, one of South Florida’s largest and most vocal gay communities, had a personal stake in the court’s decision.

Jessica Meszaros / WLRN

About 100 LGBT couples from around the world married at the W Hotel in Fort Lauderdale Thursday morning. It was a group wedding in honor of Florida’s ruling allowing same-sex marriage in January. The Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention and Visitors Bureau partnered with a few companies to host the event. 

Edward Garza / Mexican-American Council

South Florida’s best known Christmas traditions involve food. La caja china. Hallacas. But one of the richest customs involves street theater – plus a really cool donkey named Paco – and it reflects the increasingly important role Mexicans play in this region today.

Miami International Airport Workers Voting To Strike

Dec 12, 2014
Jessica Meszaros / WLRN

  Miami International Airport restaurant workers have been without a contract for about seven months. They want higher pay and better health care benefits.

Over 50 people rallied in front of Terminal E Departures at the airport Friday. They gathered HMS Host employee signatures from 7 a.m to 8 p.m.

Refinancing For Underwater Homes Ends Next Year

Dec 7, 2014
Jessica Meszaros / WLRN

The Home Affordable Refinance Program, HARP, is rolling into its last year.

The program run by the Federal Housing Finance Agency is a critical help for some South Florida homeowners.

Mitchell Zachs / Knight Foundation

Almost 50 South Florida artists and arts organizations received $2.29 million in grants on Monday to help them build everything from a Stiltsville artist-in-residency program to a Homestead mariachi academy.

Jessica Meszaros / WLRN

Homeland Security Investigations held a press conference Tuesday morning in Doral, warning South Floridians about this year’s holiday shopping season.

They asked consumers to exercise caution as they gift shop for loved ones because some bargains are just too good to be true.

Robert Hutchinson is a deputy special agent for Homeland Security. He spoke to the local press in a room filled with merchandise that, when put together, would be worth about $35 million - if it were all authentic.

Lisann Ramos

The National Nurses United union wants Ebola to be less of a threat to nurses. Members of the union gathered at Las Olas Boulevard in Fort Lauderdale Friday to take a stand for their protection.

They are circulating a petition that asks President Obama and Congress to require health facilities to improve their safety standards.

José Diaz-Balart

José Diaz-Balart says he doesn’t think of his new daily English-language show on MSNBC as South Florida being ready for the national spotlight – he thinks of it more as the nation is now ready for South Florida.

Diaz-Balart is a long-time veteran of both English and Spanish-language TV and radio – both local and international. He is currently the anchor of Noticier Telemundo at 6:30 p.m. ET.  

Saira / Courtesy

The country is grappling with how to handle the influx of Central American children who have come to the United States over the past few months. And as Central America has become more and more violent, more families have been coming to South Florida too.

Over the last year more than 55,000 families were apprehended at the U.S.-Mexico border. That’s almost six times more than the same time period a year ago.

Florida is one of the top five states receiving this influx of immigrants.

Selima Hussain

A sea of green and white flooded into Rolling Oaks Park on Saturday, as more than 150 people rallied to raise awareness of the recent kidnapping of more than 200 schoolgirls in Nigeria.

The rally, organized by the Coalition of Concerned Nigerians in South Florida, brought religious speakers, political figures and South Florida Nigerians to the Miami Gardens park. Splashes of green and white, the colors of the Nigerian flag, danced on unique headpieces, t-shirts and posters.

Selima Hussain

Late in the morning on Thursday, about 50 people gathered at Jackson Memorial Hospital to protest South Florida’s minimum wage of $7.93. The group marched through a steady drizzle of rain to a nearby Wendy's.

“We can’t support our families with what we’re making,” said Rebecca Ray, who works at the Wendy’s. “So we’re doing something about it.”

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