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Two local businesses received an award Wednesday for employing people with disabilities.

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Tuesday marks the start of World Breastfeeding Week, and a number of Panhandle county health departments are marking the week with several events.

Florida Channel

The Florida Legislature may have sent an $82.4 billion dollar budget to Governor Rick Scott Monday, but Scott is still indicating he may veto it.

Bay County Health Department

Bay County has confirmed its first positive rabies case for 2017 in a kitten. Health officials say it’s the second cat to test positive for rabies in Bay County in recent months.

Eastern Shipbuilding / https://www.uscg.mil/acquisition/opc/default.asp

U.S. Senator Bill Nelson toured a shipyard in Panama City Tuesday with the head of the Coast Guard, Admiral Paul F. Zukunft. The visit is meant to drum up excitement for a new $10 billion contract.

Former President Bill Clinton's twitter

Former President Bill Clinton is cancelling his North Florida bus tour campaign for Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton.

Bay County Health Department

Florida’s Surgeon General visited Bay County as part of a health tour of the state’s coastal areas.

Florida Department of Health

The head of Florida’s health department is making his way through the Florida Panhandle as part of a tour of the state's coastal areas. Bay County residents are invited to take part in the latest stop in the “Health in All Places Tour,” highlighting the county’s health services.

Panama City finished construction on a new stormwater management facility Friday as part of a restoration project put forth by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection. The project comes as the result of the Deepwater Horizon settlement.

GiveForward.com

A settlement may have been reached for the two Indiana teens who suffered serious injuries in a Florida Panhandle parasailing incident, but the attorney for one of the girls says the case is still not over for the victims.

Groupon.com

A bill regulating the parasailing industry is among 32 new laws set to take effect Wednesday. And, the head of Florida’s water sports association says the state’s parasailing industry is ready.

The "White-Miskell" Act

In January, Sen Maria Sachs (D-Delray Beach) said she’d never go up in a parasail with an industry that doesn’t have any uniform standards.

A new local chapter of a nationwide support group for people who stutter is set to launch soon in Panama City.

Heidi Reynolds is currently a student pursuing her speech-language pathology degree online at Utah State University.

“And, I want to go for my doctorate and maybe find the cause of stuttering and how to help those who stutter find their confidence,” said Reynolds.

Bay County 12-Year-Old Arrested For Stealing School Bus

Jun 24, 2014
school bus
City of Watsonville

Around 5:30 a.m. Tuesday a 12 year-old was arrested in Bay County.  The boy who authorities say stole a school bus is now facing charges. 

Just before daybreak the Sheriff's Office was notified that a juvenile had been seen driving a school bus near the Wal-Mart on Front Beach Road in Panama City.   

A deputy performed a traffic stop to find that indeed, a 12-year-old boy was driving the bus.  It was later discovered the school bus had been taken overnight in the city of Parker. 

cannabiscareerinstitute.com

Want to learn about starting up your own Marijuana business? Well, there’s a seminar coming to a city near you over the next couple months.  It’s offered by the Cannabis Career Institute, which according to its website, is America’s first and premier marijuana business training center.

musicians play with cup in foreground
Aggie85 via Flickr

With Gov. Rick Scott’s signature on a law, patrons are now allowed to carry open beer and wine containers out of restaurants during Panama City street festivals.

Panama City City Manager Jeffrey Brown says it used to be that street vendors could sell alcoholic beverages—but nearby restaurants were still restricted by traditional open-container laws.

Water Sports Industry Association (wsia.net)

A measure aimed at regulating Florida’s parasail industry is heading to the House floor. But, the newly expanded bill almost became collateral damage, after an initial attempt to pass the bill in its last committee failed.

The Original Bill

Florida’s parasailing industry gained national attention, after two Indiana teens were seriously injured in a Panhandle parasailing accident last year. Authorities say bad weather and heavy winds played a main role in that particular incident.

Governor's office

A bill aiming to make Florida the most veterans-friendly state in the nation got signed into law Monday. Surrounded by several military personnel and elected officials, the Governor signed the measure at a National Guard Armory in Panama City.

There are about 1.5 million veterans in Florida, and Governor Rick Scott says in signing the so-called “G.I. bill,” his hope is it makes Florida a better place to live for even more veterans.

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

After several years of never being taken up in the Florida Legislature, a bill seeking to regulate the state’s parasailing industry is now heading to the Senate Floor. It’s a popular water sport in the Sunshine State that’s ended in tragedy for some.

It was in 2007 when Crystal White and her little sister Amber went parasailing in Pompano Beach.

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

A couple of victims of Florida parasailing accidents and their families traveled to Tallahassee Thursday. They advocated on behalf of a bill aiming to regulate Florida’s parasailing industry, which unanimously passed its first Senate hearing.

Alexis Fairchild Recalls Her Accident

Sascha Cordner / WFSU-FM

An Indiana teenager who was injured in a Panama City Beach parasailing incident last summer is suing the company responsible, and is expected to testify at a committee hearing next month in favor of a bill that could help put uniform safety standards in place for Florida’s parasailing industry.

Parasail Bill Hearing

If you asked Delray Beach Democratic Senator Maria Sachs if she’d parasail now, her answer would be “no.”

Flickr Creative Commons

Florida lawmakers on the Senate Criminal Justice Committee are preparing legislation to patch some of the holes in the state’s criminal justice system that led to the premature release of two Franklin County inmates. The Florida Department of Corrections, Law Enforcement and the Clerks of Court all agree – one of the major problems with the state’s prisoner release procedure is lack of uniformity.

Bahrain Center for Human Rights

A human rights organization which advocates for people in the Middle Eastern nation of Bahrain is raising concerns about a triathlon taking place in Panama City this weekend. Two members of the Bahraini royal family who are accused of torturing protestors in their home country are slated to take part in the Panhandle race, but police say they're not taking any special precautions.

Water Sports Industry Association

A bill aiming to make the parasailing industry safer will look different than in years past when it’s next discussed by the Florida Legislature. The bill’s sponsor says instead of having the government regulate the industry, parasail operators would regulate themselves.

It’s the fourth consecutive year the legislation has been filed. In years past, the bill has allowed for government regulation of the parasailing industry, but Delray Beach Senator Maria Sachs says she worked out a compromise to give the bill a chance of passage.

GiveForward.com

The two girls involved in a recent Panhandle parasailing crash are now back home in Indiana. But, their story may foster more discussion in Florida. The incident is spurring a couple of Florida lawmakers to renew their push to regulate the parasailing industry.

Legislation aimed at regulating parasailing in Florida is set to be filed for next year’s 2014 Legislative Session. It’ll be the fourth consecutive year such a bill is written. But, Deerfield Beach Democratic Representative Gwendolyn Clarke-Reed says she believes this time her measure has a better chance.

Paul Ryan Rallies Supporters In Panama City

Nov 5, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney and running mate Paul Ryan are barnstorming key states leading up to Tuesday’s election. Ryan stopped in Panama City, Florida on Saturday.

Hundreds of people gathered at the Panama City Marina to hear Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan’s promise to take the country in a different direction under the Romney/Ryan ticket.