Senator Jeff Brandes

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A new Florida law took effect Sunday requiring the creation of civil citation programs across the state.

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The Florida Legislature has agreed to allow certain Florida officials to visit the state’s juvenile justice facilities. It’s now heading to the Governor’s desk.

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A bill allowing certain Florida officials to make announced and unannounced visits to the state’s juvenile justice facilities is now heading to the House floor.

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A legislative effort to allow pharmacists to issue flu tests to sick Floridians is on hold for now. It comes at a time when health officials say this year’s flu season is just as bad as the swine flu epidemic nearly a decade ago.

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A bill allowing Florida prison officials to recruit more young correctional officers is continuing to move in both chambers of the Florida Legislature.

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Already, the Florida Supreme Court has rejected more than three dozen appeals involving death row inmates, who received their sentences before 2002 and did not require unanimous juries. A panel of Florida lawmakers is now trying again to make a fix to that part of the state’s death penalty process.

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If Florida lawmakers don’t do anything policy wise soon, the state’s prison population could increase. That’s according to a report commissioned by the Florida Senate to promote the need for prison reform.

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About $5 million separates the Florida House and Senate’s criminal justice budget. But, while there are some differences, there are areas where both chambers agree.

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Florida lawmakers are already moving forward a bill to reform the state’s juvenile justice system. The measure aims to address abuses within the system outlined in a Miami Herald investigative series.

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Ever been the victim of a data breach? Maybe you were part of last year’s breach involving one of the largest credit agencies, Equifax. But, in Florida, if you wanted to place a freeze on your credit report, Equifax could still charge you a fee. Now, a bill is starting to move in the Florida House to eliminate that cost to consumers.

Sen. Jeff Brandes (R-St. Petersburg)
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A bipartisan coalition of Florida lawmakers are pushing two criminal justice reforms meant to roll back mass incarceration.

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You haven’t done anything wrong, but you’re pulled over anyway. The law enforcement officer asks to search your car. Should that officer be required to tell you about your right to decline the search? Florida lawmakers have started discussions about that very topic for the 2018 legislative session.

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Florida lawmakers are expected to soon take a deeper look into the Miami Herald investigative series, which detailed abuses within the state’s juvenile facilities. A panel of legislators this week gave the head of the Florida’s juvenile justice system a preview of what’s to come.

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Despite past failed legislative attempts, a bipartisan pair of lawmakers is vowing to continue their work on criminal justice reform—particularly within Florida’s prison system.

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A school bus safety bill is now heading to Governor Rick Scott, after passing the Senate this week. But, it not only received bipartisan support, but some bipartisan opposition as well.

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Senators spent Wednesday afternoon kicking the tires on a medical marijuana proposal backed by Fleming Island Republican Rob Bradley.

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A body cameras bill is starting to move through the House and Senate. But,  some lawmakers want another measure to move forward that mandates officers use the cameras at all traffic stops, citing a high profile South Florida death.

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A top priority for Senate President Joe Negron aimed at decriminalizing adolescence passed its first committee hearing Monday, but not without some concerns.

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A strong majority of Florida’s voters came together behind a constitutional amendment allowing medical marijuana.  Now Florida’s lawmakers have to come together to roll out the changes.

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A Republican state lawmaker has come out in support of a medical marijuana ballot initiative.  Florida voters will decide on the measure this November.

Republican Senator Jeff Brandes of St. Petersburg is a prime author of Amendment 4, the Legislature’s renewable energy tax cut proposal on the August 30 primary ballot. 

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The head of the Florida’s prison system says she already looking ahead to the next legislative session.

Florida Channel

A bill that enhances the penalties for passing a stopped school bus is heading to the Senate floor, after passing its last committee Monday. But, proponents of “Gabby’s Law” aren’t too happy with a recent change to the original bill.

It's assumed a conservative Republican Legislature could easily agree that less government is better. But that’s not the case when it comes to deregulation, even for professions like body wrapping and animal massage.

Florida Channel

A bill building on past reforms to Florida’s prison system is continuing to take shape.

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