Jim Ash

Reporter/Producer

Jim Ash is a reporter at WFSU-FM.  A Miami native, he is an award-winning journalist with more than 20 years of experience, most of it in print.  He has been a member of the Florida Capital Press Corps since 1992.

Ash has worked variously as a reporter, columnist and bureau chief.  His specialties include state politics, the judicial system and the environment.  His career has included coverage of everything from the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster and Hurricane Andrew to the Florida presidential recount.

Ash is a graduate of the University of Iowa where he earned a degree in English.  He spent his summers interning for newspapers, including the Austin-American Statesman in Texas.

A hiking enthusiast, Ash has explored most of the public trails in California's Big Sur.  He is an avid reader who enjoys traveling, exploring the Big Bend, and water sports.

Florida Senate

A last vestige from one of the darkest chapters in Florida’s history fell in the Senate Tuesday. The members took a largely ceremonial vote to wipe a 1977 ban on gay adoptions off the statute books.

eVoting.com

Governor Rick Scott hates the idea of online voter registration. The Senate wants it done yesterday.

Wiki Watchee Springs

A massive, industry friendly rewrite of state water policy continued churning through the Senate Wednesday.  Some critics contend the policy changes are a mile wide and only a few inches deep.

cow.com

Convinced the state is setting aside too many acres for conservation, some conservative lawmakers want to blur the distinction between private and public land. As Jim Ash reports, plans are in the works to open up public preserves for so called “low impact” agriculture.

Florida House of Representatives

A controversial growth management bill is growing less so. Environmentalists and local governments persuaded the sponsor, Republican Representative Mike La Rosa of St. Cloud, to back off a hot-button issue.

Florida House of Representatives

Getting the green light for big housing projects and other large scale development would be easier under a bill up before a House panel Tuesday. As Jim Ash reports, the controversial measure by Republican Representative Mike La Rosa of St. Cloud is drawing angry protest from environmentalists.

Florida House of Representatives

Religious freedom is more important than the bond between a mother and child. As Jim Ash reports, that appears to be the view of some Republican conservatives who want to give adoption agencies the right to discriminate against gays and lesbians.

No self-respecting conservative makes it to Tallahassee without promising to crack down on crime. But that commitment to law and order often stops at the courthouse door.

poodleanddogblog.com

They take bullets for their partners, work overtime for no pay and don’t get benefits. But as Jim Ash reports, that would change under a proposal by a House Democrat to set up a retirement plan for police dogs.

Florida House of Representatives

After voting last month to end Florida’s 1970s era ban on gay adoption, Conservative Republicans in the Florida House sent a different message Thursday, Jim Ash reports. To the jeers of gay and lesbian parents, the Judiciary Committee agreed to give private adoption agencies the right to discriminate.

www.tpl.org

Florida Forever could become Florida Never if Republicans have their way. As Jim Ash reports, that’s how critics are describing paltry spending proposals in the House and Senate for what was once the nation’s largest wilderness preservation programs.

Florida House of Representatives

A Florida House committee is throwing its two cents into delicate nuclear negotiations between Iran and Western powers. As Jim Ash reports, the House Local and Federal Affairs Committee approved a memorial to President Barack Obama and Congress.

Center for Advanced Research and Teaching

Democrats sounded the alarm about hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” the same day Republicans went ahead with plans to cement ground rules for the controversial gas and oil drilling technique.

Office of Attorney General

Governor Rick Scott and the Cabinet have hired a prominent Florida law firm to defend them against allegations they secretly discussed firing former Florida Department of Law Enforcement head Gerald Bailey. The representation could cost taxpayers as much as 50 thousand dollars.

Florida Senate

While they could win a prize for the world’s driest martini, manufacturers of “palcohol,” --  powdered alcohol -- aren’t scoring a lot of points with their pre-marketing campaign. A Senate panel voted Monday to ban powdered alcohol sales in Florida before it hits the shelves.

Florida House of Representatives

It’s the gold standard for every conservative – a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution.  Jeffrey Utsch, executive vice president of the ultra-conservative Compact for America, preaches it in a video on his group’s website:

Florida Senate

The Senate Transportation Committee agreed Thursday to crack down on drivers who cut off and harass so-called “vulnerable users” of the road.

Florida Departmenty of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles

For a legislator, it’s a chance to help a worthy cause or send a message to the political base. But specialty license plates are flooding the market and Senate Republicans want to put on the brakes.

Florida House of Representatives

The same Republican leaders who are pushing to rewrite state water policy apparently aren’t satisfied. Now House leaders are taking their scissors to the massive rule book that governs all the new growth in Florida.

BBC

Privacy advocates scored a victory Tuesday when a House panel agreed to reign in the roving eye of pilotless drones. A bill by Republican Representative Larry Metz of Yalaha passed the Civil Justice Subcommittee.

Florida Senate

In what amounts to the year of the environment, the Senate focused Tuesday on Florida’s water and its troubled springs.

Florida Secretary of State

Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner sailed through the beginning of his Senate confirmation hearings Monday, but not before navigating a few crosswinds. As Jim Ash reports, Governor Rick Scott’s choice for the state’s top elections officer was never really in jeopardy.

Florida Senate

It’s been seven years since drug dealers murdered  23-year-old Rachel Hoffman while she worked undercover for the Tallahassee Police Department -- and her father says not enough has changed.  

Associated Press

Call it the “CC” word. The allegations have been floating around the Capitol for weeks – Governor Rick Scott has a gag order on members of his administration – use any words or phrases related to climate change and you’re history.

Florida Senate

A Florida State University expert says statistics are on the side of Republican lawmakers who want to allow concealed weapons on campus.

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