State News

Palm Beach Post

The Florida Highway Patrol says low pay and high turnover aren’t hamstringing  Hurricane Irma response. But a union official says it shouldn’t take a mass evacuation to remind lawmakers of the value of the FHP.

Commissioner Putnam speaking in Polk County with local officials.
Florida Channel

Empty shelves typically stocked with water are cropping up on many Floridians’ social media feeds.  But one state official says the run on water is more panic than real peril.

Attorney General Pam Bondi
Florida Channel

Demand is high for disaster prep necessities, and it’s sending prices skyward.  

MGN Online

The former head of the National Hurricane Center has some last minute tips for Floridians preparing for Irma.

Major Hurricane Irma is still a Category 5 storm and still a significant threat to the entire peninsula of Florida.

http://sar-cdn.com/sites/default/files/imagecache/superphoto/12356177.jpg

Florida State University President John Thrasher is weighing in on President Trump’s decision to end a program that protects undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. as kids from deportation.

Historic Capitol
Tom Flanigan / WFSU News

The Florida Legislature is cancelling upcoming committee meetings ahead of Hurricane Irma. Lawmakers’ preparations for the 2018 session will have to wait.

Miami Herald

Hurricane Irma’s record-breaking fury and uncertain track is sending an unprecedented number of Floridians to grocery stores and gas stations, according to the Florida Retail Federation.

Shannon Behnken via WFLA News Channel 8 / https://twitter.com/WFLAShannon?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

Floridians are flocking to stores to stock up ahead of Hurricane Irma. Some locations are struggling to keep supplies on the shelves.

Irma has become the most powerful hurricane on record in the Atlantic Ocean, not including the Caribbean or the Gulf of Mexico. It grew in size and strength Tuesday, and could bring catastrophic life-threatening wind, storm surge and rainfall to portions of the Leeward Islands, the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico by Wednesday. Irma could also directly affect the remainder of the Bahamas, Cuba, and even portions of Florida later this week and weekend.

Palm Beach Post

The First District Court of Appeal is siding with Hamilton Downs, a North Florida pari-mutuel facility, in a legal battle with state regulators.

President Donald Trump is nominating Tallahassee attorney Matthew Leopold for Environmental Protection Agency general counsel, and advocates say his background as a Florida regulator is a plus.

Florida Department of Children and Families twitter

Florida’s child welfare officials are doing a review of their system and already looking ahead legislatively on the state and national level on what can be done to further help children within the system.

iStockphoto

Over the past 15 years, about 50,000 Florida kids have been adopted so far. But, the head of the state’s child welfare system has mixed feelings on that number.

fotogake via flickr / https://www.flickr.com/photos/gake/5891830312/

This year Florida lawmakers changed the way the state building codes are updated. There are concerns the new law could weaken the integrity of Florida homes, in order to cut construction costs. In the wake of Harvey, those concerns are taking on a new significance.

Nick Evans

Florida Governor Rick Scott has set a date for the execution of Michael Lambrix.

NOAA

Some have claimed that storms like Hurricane Harvey are the result of global climate change, which is likely to mean more dangerous weather events in the future. So we checked in with the State of Florida’s climatologist to get his take on that argument.

Audubon of Florida / http://audubonoffloridanews.org/?p=11408

A planned reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee could take shape more quickly thanks to an Army Corps of Engineers decision.  

iStockphoto

Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran says he’s proud of his House Budget Chairman, Carlos Trujillo receiving a nomination for a United Nations post.

OneBlood / OneBlood

The state’s blood donation centers are sending resources to Texas hospitals affected by Harvey, now a tropical depression. OneBlood is asking Florida residents to give now.

A Florida Black Bear.
Fish and Wildlife Commission via wikimedia commons

State wildlife officials say human-bear interactions are on the rise, and they’re trying to educate Floridians on ways to defuse those situations. 

Tom Flanigan

A Congressional hearing on the theft of American intellectual property by the Chinese took place yesterday (Wednesday), not in Washington, D.C., but in Tallahassee, Florida. Two House members from Northwest Florida took testimony from two experts and one victim.

Rep. Shevrin Jones (D-West Park) is one of a handful of state lawmakers pushing to change confederate commemorations like street names in Hollywood, FL.
Meredith Geddings via Florida House Website

The Hollywood city commission has approved a plan to rename three streets named after confederate generals.  It’s part of a broader effort reassessing the state’s relationship with its history.

Florida Channel

The 2018 Governor’s race could lead to Florida’s Senate Budget Chairman and House Speaker squaring off against each other in the primary. But, for now, Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran says he does not think the campaign trail will affect the legislature’s handling of the upcoming year’s budget.

Tammy Lampson

Thousands reacted this week to a photo of residents sitting waist-deep in floodwaters at an assisted living facility in Dickinson, Texas. The town did not issue a mandatory evacuation order ahead of Tropical Storm Harvey. The photo, and Texas officials' decisions to not evacuate, could have ramifications for emergency plans for Florida’s elderly residents.

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