Gov. Rick Scott, Senate President Joe Negron, House Speaker Richard Corcoran
State of Florida, Florida Senate, Florida House of Representatives

Top Issues of the 2017 Legislative Session

The Florida legislature will convene on Tuesday, March 7 for the start of its annual, 60-day session. The top priority is ironing out a state budget for the 2016-2017 fiscal year. But to get there, lawmakers will have to address dozens of other issues.

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Tom Flanigan

Tallahassee’s new V-A Health Center has been open since October. But on Thursday (2/23) the building finally got its official dedication and ribbon-cutting today (on Thursday).

Former Tallahassee Representative Michelle Rehwinkel-Vasilinda has joined the Republican Party of Florida.

While extending an olive branch of sorts to Governor Rick Scott, House Speaker Richard Corcoran says he is determined to ax the state’s business recruitment arm, Enterprise Florida.

Nakia Venant's facebook

The head of Florida’s child welfare system says it will most likely be about a month before he will have a preliminary report ready for state lawmakers about Nakia Venant. She’s the Miami teenager in foster care who committed suicide live on Facebook last month.

Joseph Zeballos-Roig for WFSU News

A Tallahassee businessman gave city commissioners a tour Thursday of two new developments aimed at easing the city’s affordable housing crisis. 

Greyhounds racing
Rainer Hungershausen

The Florida House unveiled its version of a gambling overhaul bill Thursday. What’s inside came as a surprise to lawmakers like Sarasota Republican Rep. Alex Miller (R-Sarasota).

"Decoupling would eventually in my estimation eliminate the cruelest form of entertainment we have here in Florida and as a freshman I was excited to be put on this committee to decouple. And instead I’m put on this committee with the idea that we won’t be able to do anything for 20 years. So it’s personally disappointing for me,” Miller said.

Historic Capitol
Tom Flanigan / WFSU News

State lawmakers want to make it harder for Floridians to amend the constitution. The plan would up the percentage of voter approval needed to pass a measure from 60 percent to more than 66 percent.

James Madison Institute

Opponents of Senate President Joe Negron’s call for building a massive water storage area South of Lake Okeechobee are turning up the heat.

FAMM

Advocates say more conservative Republicans are seeing the wisdom of reforming minimum mandatory sentencing laws.

Lynn Hatter / WFSU News

Florida is known for its beaches, and the state and Mickey Mouse are often viewed as one and the same. But before there was Disney World, or South Beach, Florida was known for something else. It’s sprawling farms, citrus groves and ranches. Today, agriculture remains one of the state’s main economic drivers. And once a decade a group of gather to honor the state’s earliest commodity: cattle.

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From NPR News

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Copyright 2017 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Mahershala Ali won the Academy Award for best supporting actor for his role in Moonlight. NPR's Kelly McEvers spoke to Ali in October about his experience working on the film, which won the Oscar for best picture. This story originally aired on Oct. 21, 2016 on All Things Considered.

One of the very first bills President Trump signed into law this month killed a Securities and Exchange Commission rule meant to promote transparency in countries riddled with corruption. Trump said getting rid of the rule, which required oil, gas and mining companies to disclose overseas royalties and other payments, would bring back jobs and save extraction companies many hours of paperwork and, potentially, hundreds of millions of dollars.

A 19-year-old white man accused of kicking a coat hanger up the rectum of a mentally disabled black teammate received no jail time at his sentencing on Friday.

Former high school football player John R. K. Howard entered a so-called "Alford plea," meaning he maintains his innocence while admitting a judge or jury would likely find him guilty. He was sentenced to probation and community service, and his conviction might be entirely dismissed at a later date.

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