State News

Hundreds of people arrive for a mobile food distribution site.
Margie Menzel / WFSU News

The number of Floridians living in poverty has fallen since the Great Recession. But it’s still higher than the national average. According to federal data 14 percent of Floridians had incomes below the poverty line. The figure is closer to 12.3 percent nationally. WFSU is taking a look what it means to live below the state poverty line, or in some cases, right on the edge of it.

Aglez the city guy/flickr

A minimum wage case before the Florida Supreme Court will determine whether Miami Beach can move ahead with an ordinance passed by the city commission in 2016.

The issue is whether a 2003 state law stopping local governments from setting their own minimum wage supersedes a 2004 voter-approved constitutional amendment.

Miami Beach city commissioners voted to phase in a higher minimum wage that would reach $13.31 an hour by 2021. That would be about $5 more an hour than the state’s minimum wage.

Florida Supreme Court
Nick Evans / WFSU News

The League of Women Voters of Florida is suing Governor Rick Scott over the appointment of new state supreme court justices. 

Workers and volunteers help sort and stock a Tallahassee food bank.
Margie Menzel / WFSU News

The number of Floridians living in poverty has fallen since the Great Recession. But it’s still higher than the national average. The federal government has released two reports showing about 14 percent of Floridians had incomes below the poverty line. 

red tide
Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is partnering with red tide experts to combat the destructive algae ravaging the state’s Gulf coast. 

A new study published by the ACLU of Florida shows a number of mail-in ballots are being rejected. Activists are asking voters to be informed about the vote-by-mail process.

Police sirens
Pixabay / Pexels

Florida’s Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal has rolled out new training materials for employers of the state’s first responders. It’s to help those with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Courtesy Ron DeSantis Campaign

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis has released a detailed education platform. The former congressman says he wants 80 percent of K-12 dollars spent in the classroom.

Gillum speaks at a press conference to propose his education plan.
Eleanor Clark / WFSU

Democratic gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum unveiled his plans to raise teacher salaries and improve education statewide. His plan calls for $1 billion to go towards education.

The inside of the Leon County Supervisor of Elections office with a vote sign
Leon County Supervisor of Elections twitter

Deadlines for vote-by-mail voters for Florida’s general election are approaching. 

Ryan Dailey / WFSU-FM

The nonpartisan research group Integrity Florida has released a new study about Florida’s charter schools and the industry’s political influence. The study took nearly a year to complete, and takes a deep dive into how the charter model became what it is today.

Florida Senate

Incoming Senate President Bill Galvano stands by his decision to keep funds in the so-called Guardian program.

This comes after Governor Rick Scott asked the Legislature to move the remaining funds to school districts so they can hire more officers.

www.miamibeachchamber.com

The City of Miami Beach is in a battle with the state that could impact hundreds of Florida municipalities. It’s about home rule and the city’s ability to set its own policy when it comes to wages.

Florida’s minimum wage is $8.25 an hour. The amount may go up each year based on changes in the Consumer Price Index.

Miami Beach leaders voted two years ago to approve a higher minimum wage than the state.

Cannabis leaves and leaf
Drew Taylor / Unsplash

The legality of medical marijuana is still largely a gray area in the eyes of the federal government. The confusion impacting banks, dispensaries and policy is leading some, like democratic candidate for Commissioner of Agricuture Nikki Fried, to call for reform.

Florida Department of Law Enforcement's website

Monday marked the 20th annual Florida Missing Children’s Day. It was not only a time to remember those still missing and those forever gone, the day also honors the state’s efforts.

The seven-member Florida Supreme  Court poses for a photo in the courtroom.
Florida Supreme Court / Florida Supreme Court

Governor Rick Scott’s decision to start the process of appointing new Florida Supreme Court justices has ignited a looming constitutional crisis.  At the center of the issue: who—the outgoing or incoming governor—has the ability to make those appointments.

Annette Taddeo twitter

Three Floridian Democratic politicians are lashing out against Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Ron DeSantis. They’re upset about a 2013 vote he cast as a Congressman. The vote was against the reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, which provides funding and resources to fight domestic violence.

Emerson George / Courtesy Ron DeSantis For Governor

Republican gubernatorial candidate Ron DeSantis is touting his environmental platform, which his campaign released this week.

Florida State University

The council that governs most fraternities in North America has voted to ban hard alcohol in chapter houses and at events. A Florida State University official is calling that a “step forward.”

Amendment 10 at the Capitol
Shawn Mulcahy / WFSU

Florida officials are rallying behind Amendment 10, which would require certain local offices be elected rather than appointed. A number of local agencies gathered at the Capitol Monday to launch a statewide initiative supporting the proposal.

Three Older Man Talk and Laugh
Elder Care Services

Evacuating with companion pets can bring added challenges to hurricane season, particularly for elderly adults. Many seniors struggle to find pet-friendly shelters when it comes time to leave for safety.

MGN Online

As Gov. Rick Scott’s Cabinet meets for its last clemency board meeting before the state’s general election, the conversation surrounding felon voting rights is ramping up. One amendment on the ballot could put a new restoration system in place.

Ryan Dailey / WFSUNews

Florida democratic candidate for Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is making medical marijuana a key part of her platform. The South Florida lobbyist is calling for federal legislation and vowing to expand the state’s medical marijuana industry.

Twitter

Florida voters have clear choices among the major party candidates for governor.

Conservative Republican Ron DeSantis and progressive Democrat Andrew Gillum couldn’t be more different in their ideologies, and that could leave a large swath of voters scratching their heads in November.

Florida Gov. candidates with their running mates [from left to right]: Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, a Democrat, chose Orlando Businessman and former rival Chris King, while Fla. Congressman Ron DeSantis, a Republican, chose state Rep. Jeanette Nunez.
Andrew Gillum's Twitter/Ron Desantis' Twitter

This week, Florida gubernatorial candidates from the two major political parties chose their running mates: Florida Congressman Ron DeSantis, a Republican, chose state Rep. Jeanette Nunez, while Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, a Democrat, chose Orlando Businessman and former rival Chris King. Sascha Cordner spoke to University of Central Florida Political Scientist Aubrey Jewett to discuss the Republican and Democrat running mates, whether picking a Lieutenant Governor matters, and if the right choices were made on each ticket.

Pages