Regan McCarthy

Senior Producer/Assignment Editor

Regan McCarthy is the Assignment Editor and Senior News Producer for WFSU News/ Florida Public Radio. Before coming to Tallahassee, Regan graduated with honors from Indiana University’s Ernie Pyle School of Journalism. She worked for several years for NPR member station WFIU in Bloomington, Ind., where she covered local and state government and produced feature and community stories. She has also worked for the London Business Matters Magazine and the Rochester Sentinel, a daily local newspaper. She is the recipient of six professional broadcast awards including first-place Best Radio Feature from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists.  When she isn’t tracking leading newsmakers she spends her time knitting, reading, strolling through the woods and brunching at new restaurants.  Follow Regan McCarthy on Twitter: @Regan_McCarthy

City of Tallahassee

Tallahassee City Commissioners are considering employee pay raises and employee cost increases as part of their spending plan for the upcoming budget year.

Photo of houses in Southwood
Erich Martin

Tallahassee residents won’t see an increase in their property tax rate next year. City Commissioners voted during a budget workshop Wednesday to keep the current rate in place. Commissioner Curtis Richardson says that’s the plan commissioners had in mind when they reduced the rate during the last budgeting cycle.

Steve Buissinne https://pixabay.com/en/users/stevepb-282134/

Tallahassee City Commissioners will continue their budget talks in a workshop Wednesday. Officials started discussions during a meeting last month. Commissioner Scott Maddox says he’s glad to see the process kicking off early.

Gas pump
Mike Mozart / Flickr

Governor Rick Scott has signed a bill into law that creates tougher penalties for people using gas skimmers.

http://kaboompics.com/photo/3619/woman-writing-in-her-notebook

A report from the Federal Reserve Bank of New York says on average, recent college grads are leaving school with more than $30,000 in debt. And Florida lawmakers worry many of those students haven’t given much thought to how they’ll pay that money back.

Lance Cheung

While some Florida utility companies have raised concerns about higher than expected fuel prices, Tallahassee Utilities officials say they’re not seeing any cost increases on the horizon. Reese Goad is Tallahassee’s Deputy City Manager. He says a diversified energy portfolio is one thing that helps keep local costs steady and he says the addition of two-planned solar farms will build on that.

Monticello Republican Representative Halsey Beshears sponsored the bill. He says the special district has been inactive for years.

chart showing inches of rainfall to date
Florida Forest Service

Florida officials are urging residents to take precautions and comply with burn bans as forecasts predict even drier conditions going into the spring and summer.

A home hit by a large tree during hurricane hermine
Regan McCarthy WFSU News

There’s just a month left for Tallahassee residents to apply for Hermine Disaster recovery money through the State Housing Initiative Partnership, or SHIP.

Steve Buissinne https://pixabay.com/en/users/stevepb-282134/

Tallahassee Commissioners are scheduled to meet Wednesday for a workshop on the city budget. The meeting comes after state lawmakers passed a plan that could have a significant impact on their bottom line.

Non-euphoric marijuana was supposed to be available January 1 of this year.
Nick Evans

Medical Marijuana is on the agenda for the Leon County Commission’s Tuesday meeting.

Jeff Kubina

Lawmakers have folded on plans to pass a comprehensive gambling overhaul bill this legislative session.

No gambling deal will pass this legislative session. Lawmakers announced plans Tuesday to dissolve their conference on the issue. Representative Jose Diaz led the House’s side of the negotiations. He says a move to let eight new counties operate slot machines was a main sticking point.

“We were far apart on a lot of things. We were not on the same page on effective date or on Bingo or on blackjack. But referendum counties was the big divide,” Diaz said.

Florida lawmakers are beginning to make headway when it comes to finding a middle ground between the House and Senate gambling plans.

Steve Buissinne https://pixabay.com/en/users/stevepb-282134/

Members of the Florida House moved through a long list of bills during a floor session Tuesday. The meeting teed up several tax cut proposals for a floor vote.

Greyhounds racing
Rainer Hungershausen

A bill that would ban the use of steroids in racing greyhounds is nearing its last hurdle in the Florida legislature.

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

Florida Wildlife Officials are putting the possibility of a black bear hunt on hold—at least for the next few years. The decision came during a Wednesday meeting the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission meeting.

Erich Martin

Florida clerks of court are often considered the foundation of the state’s judicial system, but they say they no longer have enough money to do their jobs.

Greyhounds racing
Rainer Hungershausen

A bill to prevent greyhound tracks from giving their racing dogs steroids is moving forward in the Senate.

Members of the greyhound industry say without the ability to use anabolic steroids, like testosterone, to keep their female dogs from going into heat, a catastrophe could be just around the corner. Fred Johnson works with the Florida Greyhound Association of Jacksonville.

Steve Buissinne https://pixabay.com/en/users/stevepb-282134/

You may not use much of that German you took in high school, or perhaps not even that U.S. History. But lawmakers are pushing a class Fort Myers Republican Representative Heather Fitzenhagen says most people will use.

Jam in jars
Olia Gozha / https://unsplash.com/@olia

Bee keepers and jam purveyors may soon be able to take their business to the internet. Brandon Republican Senator Tom Lee is pushing a measure to expand where members of the cottage food industry can hock their wares

Ted Murphy

A gambling overhaul bill passed through the full Florida Senate Thursday. Meanwhile the House bill is heading for that chamber’s floor. While leaders say it’s been years since a gambling bill has advanced so far through the process, others point out there’s a long way left to go.

Peeking at cards during a poker game
Michał Parzuchowski / https://unsplash.com/@mparzuchowski

Florida Senators have teed their gambling overhaul bill up for a vote on the floor Thursday .

The full chamber discussed the measure Wednesday. Bradenton Republican Senator Bill Galvano is the bill sponsor. He says each of the provisions in the bill are contingent on one another as well as on the state’s ability to negotiate an agreement with the Seminole Tribe of Florida.

Laptops at a coffee shop
Leroy

Florida House lawmakers are moving forward with a plan to revamp the state’s information technology system.

Fringehog / Flickr

A bill to ban red-light cameras passed the Florida House Thursday.

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