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7/25/2014 - Adjourned
7/25/2014 - Adjourned
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APPEALS COURT OKs 'DOCS VS. GLOCKS' LAW
BRANDON LARRABEE |
A federal appeals court has upheld the state's controversial "docs vs. glocks" bill, overturning an earlier court ruling that had blocked part of the law from being enforced... Story

PERSONNEL FILE - PEOPLE ON THE MOVE, JULY 25, 2014
STAFF |
JEANETTE NUNEZ has been appointed by House Speaker Will Weatherford to the Statewide Council on Human Trafficking. Nunez, R-Miami, represents District 119 in the state House... Read the Personnel File

WEEKLY ROUNDUP: DIFFERENT SPEEDS FOR JUSTICE, POLITICS
BRANDON LARRABEE |
The justice system tends to move very slowly, and this week it seemed to be struggling to keep up with politics... Read the Roundup

ADVANCES: WEEK OF JULY 27, 2014
STAFF |
With the school year fast-approaching, the state's "sales-tax holiday" will start next Friday... Read the Advances


'BABY COURTS' CONSIDERED TO HEAL TRAUMATIZED INFANTS
MARGIE MENZEL |
An expert on childhood trauma urged members of the Florida Children and Youth Cabinet on Thursday to promote a "baby court" model in which judges, lawyers and caseworkers put the needs of traumatized infants and toddlers before any other considerations... Story

JUDGE SOUNDS WARY OF REDRAWING MAP QUICKLY
BRANDON LARRABEE |
A Leon County judge said Thursday he would try to rule by the end of next week on whether the state's congressional districts have to be redrawn before the November elections... Story

BACKROOM BRIEFING: JOLLY UNDER FIRE; ATWATER DEFENDS STATE'S HONOR
DARA KAM AND JIM TURNER |
The LGBT community won a major victory last week when a Monroe County judge overturned the "Florida Marriage Protection Act" banning same-sex marriages... Read the Briefing

NET WORTH UP FOR MAJORITY OF LAWMAKERS
JIM TURNER |
For most state lawmakers, 2013 was another good year financially, regardless of party... Story

INMATE'S DEATH RAISES QUESTIONS ABOUT PRISON PROTECTIONS
DARA KAM |
In one of his final letters to his mother, Justin Campos wrote that, although he was serving a life sentence for killing two members of the notorious Latin Kings gang, he had faith that God would protect him... Story


REDISTRICTING CLASH HEATS UP AS HEARING APPROACHES
BRANDON LARRABEE |
Voting-rights advocates and the Legislature squabbled Wednesday about when the state's congressional elections should be held as both sides prepared for a hearing in front of a Leon County judge... Story

POLL FINDS WYLLIE PLAYING A ROLE AS MUD CONTINUES TO FLY
BRANDON LARRABEE |
Libertarian Adrian Wyllie has become a factor in the race for governor, something that a pollster attributed to the nastiness of the race between Republican Gov. Rick Scott and his chief Democratic rival, former Gov. Charlie Crist... Story

COURT ALLOWS HIGHER RESCUE FEES FOR CITY VISITORS
JIM SAUNDERS |
Rejecting arguments that the policy is unconstitutional, a state appeals court said Wednesday that the city of Miami can charge an extra $100 when its rescue crews transport non-residents to hospitals for emergency care... Story

POLL: GOVERNOR'S RACE GETS CLOSER AMID ATTACKS
JIM SAUNDERS |
With the campaign dominated by a barrage of back-and-forth attacks, Democrat Charlie Crist's lead over Republican incumbent Rick Scott has narrowed in the race for Florida governor, a new poll shows... Story


NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA HAS: FIVE QUESTIONS FOR ANNETTE TADDEO
MARGIE MENZEL |
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Charlie Crist announced last week that his running mate would be Annette Taddeo, chairwoman of the Miami-Dade Democratic Party and a political consultant's dream: a Hispanic working mom who runs a successful small business and hosted her own show, Taddeo2Day, on CNN Latino... Story

SCOTT ADDS MACHINERY SALES TAX CUT TO PLATFORM
JIM TURNER |
Gov. Rick Scott wants to make permanent the temporary lifting of a sales tax on the purchase of manufacturing machinery, a tax cut he also pushed last year... Story

'HURRICANE TAX' ON INSURANCE POLICIES TO END 18 MONTHS EARLY
JIM TURNER |
An extra charge on property-insurance and auto-insurance policies to cover claims paid for the 2004 and 2005 hurricane seasons will end Jan. 1... Story


TRAUMA INDUSTRY FIGHT NEARS END
JIM SAUNDERS |
Florida's trauma drama could be almost finished... Story

TRIAL JUDGE DENIES 'STAND YOUR GROUND' IMMUNITY HEARING FOR MARISSA ALEXANDER
MARGIE MENZEL |
The trial judge overseeing the case of Marissa Alexander, who faces 60 years in prison for firing a shot in a domestic dispute, has ruled that she is not entitled to a second immunity hearing under Florida's controversial "stand your ground" self-defense law... Story

NO SAME-SEX MARRIAGES IN THE KEYS FOR NOW DESPITE VICTORY FOR GAY COUPLE
DARA KAM |
Gay couples won't be able to tie the knot in the Keys any time soon despite a Monroe County judge's decision last week striking down Florida's voter-approved constitutional ban on same-sex marriages... Story

POWER COMPANIES ASK TO SCALE BACK ENERGY EFFICIENCY GOALS
JIM TURNER |
Florida's biggest electric providers are asking state regulators this week to let them scale back energy-efficiency programs --- such as rebates for installing solar panels and power-saving appliances --- that they say have become expensive and benefit few customers... Story


ADVANCES: WEEK OF JULY 20, 2014
STAFF |
Much of Florida's political world is focused on the battle between Rick Scott and Charlie Crist or debates about issues such as medical marijuana. Meanwhile, the less-sexy business of state government continues... Read the Advances

SUPREME COURT PONDERS NEW JUVENILE SENTENCING LAW
MARGIE MENZEL |
The Florida Supreme Court has asked attorneys how a new state law might affect cases dealing with inmates who were sentenced to long prison terms for committing murders or other major crimes when they were juveniles... Story

FLORIDA'S JOBLESS RATE SHOW SLIGHT IMPROVEMENT
JIM TURNER |
Though Florida slipped behind the national unemployment rate for the first time in more than a year, Gov. Rick Scott on Friday promoted that the state had its "greatest month" of private-sector job creation since he took office... Story


...Read More in the Monthly Digest


MIAMI-DADE JUDGE RULES AGAINST FLORIDA'S GAY MARRIAGE BAN

A Miami-Dade County judge ruled Friday against the state's voter-approved constitutional ban on same-sex marriages...

BONDI NEARS $1.5M IN CAMPAIGN CASH

Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi collected $32,600 in contributions from July 12 to July 18, bringing her overall total to $1.49 million, according to newly filed finance reports...

CRIST COMMITTEE SHIPS ANOTHER $600K TO PARTY

A committee closely tied to Democrat Charlie Crist's gubernatorial campaign raised $221,600 from July 12 to July 18 and funneled $600,000 to the Florida Democratic Party, according to newly filed finance reports...

GENERAL REVENUE TO BE TALLIED AUG. 7

Economists will meet Aug. 7 to update estimates of Florida's general revenue, a major source of funding for the state's education system, health-care programs and prisons...

WELLCARE POSTS LOSS, CITES MEDICAID EXPENSES

Tampa-based WellCare Health Plans, Inc., reported a loss in the year's second quarter and pointed, in part, to higher-than-expected expenses in Florida's new statewide Medicaid managed-care program...


BOGDANOFF HAULS IN $85K FOR SENATE RACE

Gearing up for the highest-profile Senate race of the year, former Sen. Ellyn Bogdanoff, R-Fort Lauderdale, collected $85,720 in contributions from July 5 to July 18, newly filed reports show...

OBAMA'S NUMBERS LACKLUSTER IN FLORIDA

Though Democrats continue to stand behind him, 52 percent of Florida voters disapprove of the way President Obama is handling his job while 44 percent approve, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday...

VOTER REGISTRATION DEADLINE MONDAY

Floridians face a Monday deadline to register to vote in the Aug. 26 primary elections...

CLAIM BILLS FILED FOR 2015 SESSION

The first bills for the 2015 legislative session began popping up on the Senate website Thursday, with lawmakers filing five claim bills...

FL POLL: CLINTON TOP CHOICE FOR 2016

Democrat Hillary Clinton continues to be the favorite potential candidate of Florida voters in the 2016 presidential race, leading former Republican Gov. Jeb Bush by a margin of 49 percent to 42 percent in a hypothetical contest, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday...


APPEALS COURT DENIES REQUEST TO LIFT STAY IN GAY MARRIAGE CASE

A Florida appeals court Wednesday denied a request from a Key West gay couple to lift a stay of a Monroe County judge's ruling that overturned the state's ban on same-sex marriages...

FEES FOR REAL ESTATE LICENSES REDUCED

Real-estate professionals could collectively save about $2.7 million a year through a reduction in license fees that went into effect this month, the governor's office announced Wednesday...

SUPREME COURT SETS HEARING ON REDISTRICTING RECORDS

The Florida Supreme Court will hear arguments Sept. 19 in a legal battle about records in a congressional redistricting lawsuit...

WORKMAN PLANS SENATE BID IN 2018

State Rep. Ritch Workman, R-Melbourne, has filed paperwork as a first step toward running for a Senate seat in 2018, according to the state Division of Elections website...

POT RULES TO BE DISCUSSED

The Florida Department of Health will hold a meeting Aug. 1 to continue discussing regulations for carrying out a new law allowing a type of medical marijuana...

RICH CONTINUES TO LAG IN QPOLL

Former state Senate Minority Leader Nan Rich continues to trail Republican Gov. Rick Scott in a head-to-head contest and remains little-known to voters, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released Wednesday...


CHARTER SCHOOL BALKS AT REQUIRED BUSING

A charter school has filed a legal challenge against the St. Lucie County School Board in a dispute about whether the school can be required to offer busing to children who live two or more miles away from campus...

SHELDON CALLS ON PSC TO REJECT UTILITY CONSERVATION REQUESTS

George Sheldon, a Democrat running for attorney general, called Tuesday for the Florida Public Service Commission to reject proposals from the state's largest power companies to scale back energy-conservation programs --- and also criticized Republican Attorney General Pam Bondi for not getting involved in utility cases...

MEDIA COMPANIES WANT ACCESS TO REDISTRICTING DOCS

A group of media companies is asking the Florida Supreme Court for permission to file a "friend of the court" brief in a lawsuit over documents related to a congressional redistricting case...

QPOLL ON GOVERNOR'S RACE COMING WEDNESDAY

After its earlier polls showed Democrat Charlie Crist with a hefty lead over Republican Gov. Rick Scott, Quinnipiac University on Wednesday is expected to release an updated poll about this year's gubernatorial race...

JUSTICES COULD HEAR LEE COUNTY ELECTRIC DISPUTE

A Lee County electric utility has asked the Florida Supreme Court to take up a dispute with the city of Cape Coral about the costs of moving utility lines and power poles because of a road project...

INDIAN RIVER GOES TO PSC ON UTILITY BREAKUP

Indian River County this week asked the Florida Public Service Commission to help sort out the ramifications of a plan for unincorporated areas of the county to stop relying on the city of Vero Beach for electric service...


COURT RULES AGAINST AGENCY IN 'IBUDGET' DISPUTE

An appeals court Monday found that the state Agency for Persons with Disabilities did not properly carry out a law that created a new system of funding services for people with developmental disabilities...

SCHOOL CHOICE POLITICAL GROUP RAISES $300K

A political organization that backs school-choice programs collected $300,000 in contributions from July 5 to July 11, with $100,000 of that amount coming from Charter Schools USA, Inc., according to newly filed finance reports...

REPORT: FLORIDA BLUE COULD RAISE RATES

Major insurer Florida Blue could raise rates in 2015 for people enrolled through the federal health-care exchange after seeing a large number of older and sicker enrollees, Kaiser Health News reported Monday...

 
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