State News

Attorney General Pam Bondi (left) and Governor Rick Scott (third from left) spoke about an Alachua County emergency declaration after the Florida Cabinet meeting Tuesday.
Brittany Clark / Florida Governor's Office

A federal appeals court is eyeing a date to hear arguments in Florida’s ongoing legal battle concerning the restoration of felon voting rights. 

Bill Nelson's youtube channel

Florida’s U.S. Senatorial candidates Rick Scott and Bill Nelson have both offered their takes on President Donald Trump’s exit from the Iran nuclear deal. Their respective stances could become a central issue between the opposing campaigns.

Drugs and firearms seized as part of "Operation Spring Cleaning."
Florida Sheriff's Association Youtube

This year’s “Operation Spring Cleaning” was a huge success. More than half the counties in the state participated in an effort to get controlled substances off the street during a six-month period.

Governor Claude Kirk standing with his mother on inauguration day: Tallahassee, Florida (January 3, 1967)
FloridaMemory.com / Florida Department of State

Teachers in several states have gone on strike in recent months, protesting for better pay and working conditions. But that’s not the case in Florida, and likely will never be. Still, once upon a time, Florida led the first teacher strike in the United States. 

Gov. Rick Scott (center) with House Speaker Richard Corcoran (left) and Senate President Joe Negron (right) after signing 2018's House Bill 7055 and Senate Bill 4.   3/11/18
The Florida Channel / WFSU

When Governor Rick Scott rolled out the first television ad in his campaign for U.S. Senate in April, it centered entirely on his desire to bring 12-year term limits to Congress. Meanwhile, this week saw the retirement of Senate President Joe Negron who says he is a “big believer in term limits.” The conversation has even reached the Constitution Revision Commission, with a proposal that would limit school board members to 8-year terms. Florida Public Radio’s Ryan Dailey recently talked with Professor Daniel Smith, Chair of the Political Science Department at the University of Florida to talk about why the conversation about term limits is bubbling up in every level of Florida politics.

The sign with a bicycle also says "share the road."
AAA

It’s National Bike Safety Month, and Triple-A has some tips for drivers and bicyclists to share the road safely and avoid any deadly crashes. 

apalacheecenter.org

For the past several years, mental health agencies in and around Tallahassee have formed a tight bond to help them address community needs. Now that coalition structure is being used as a model for the rest of the state in the wake of the Parkland school shootings.

Senate President Joe Negron (R-Stuart)
Nick Evans

Senate President Joe Negron announced his retirement today, leaving two years of his current term on the table. Negron, who was put in office during a 2009 special election, attributes those additional two years to “reapportionment litigation.”

Car tag for the Florida Police Benevolent Association
FLHSMV.org / Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles

Florida’s largest police union is throwing its support to Democratic Gubernatorial Candidate Gwen Graham and Republican contender Adam Putnam. The former Congresswoman and the state Agriculture commissioner are among the slate of statewide office endorsements. 

peoriapublicradio.org

The Florida Supreme Court will take up a long running lawsuit over public school funding. The lawsuit began in 2009 and has made its way through the courts, spanned two governors, multiple education commissioners, and three house and senate leaders.

Sea turtles on beach
Isabella Jusková

Sea turtle nesting season is officially underway. Officials are advising beachgoers to take precautions to help keep turtles safe.

WFSU

The organization behind a petition drive to put an assault rifle ban on the 2020 ballot announced its steering committee Monday. 

Florida Civil Rights Hall of Fame

Governor Rick Scott has announced his three nominees for Florida’s Civil Rights Hall of Fame. All three nominations have made significant contributions to minorities in the state.

Ryan Dailey / WFSUNews

Those who have sworn to protect Floridians gathered in the Capitol Courtyard Wednesday to remember law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty this past year, and the loved ones they left behind. 

The 2018 Florida Constitution Revision Commission. Group photo.
Constitution Revision Commission

Florida voters will pick a slate of new state leaders, local legislative representatives, city and county officials  and toward the end, if they make it-- a dozen or so requests to change the state constitution.  Yet some of those requests are likely to give voters pause upon a close read: do they want to ban indoor vaping while simultaneously banning offshore drilling?  Many of the amendments are grouped together and observers worry the result will end up confusing voters. 

Ryan Dailey / WFSUNews

The fight to restore voting rights for those with a felony in their past has become a rapidly intensifying factor in shaping upcoming state elections. After an apparent political victory for Gov. Rick Scott’s cabinet, Democratic challengers are hitting back.

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri speaking to members of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission, which he chairs. It had its first meeting Tuesday.
Florida Channel

Between a Medal of Heroism ceremony honoring a school resource officer and a commission convened to investigate the failings that led up to a Valentine’s Day massacre, mass school shootings still took center stage in Florida this week.

Amanda Nalley / Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission has announced new recreational fishing dates for the greater amberjack due to reports of overfishing. 

Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission wants more research for approving the harvest of previously endangered goliath groupers. But, many against the decision say the science does not back up the reasoning.

A snowy plover on its nest
FWC's Flickr

It’s Nesting season for Florida’s waterbirds. And, Florida wildlife officials say it’s important the public keeps its distance, while on the beach or boating on the state’s waterways.

Ryan Dailey / WFSUNews

As an appellate court reviews an appeal by Governor Rick Scott and his cabinet in the battle for a new rights restoration scheme for felons, protesters rallied at the Capitol Thursday. Civil rights leaders urged support for a citizens’ initiative amendment on the ballot in November.

Attorney General Pam Bondi (left) and Governor Rick Scott (third from left) spoke about an Alachua County emergency declaration after the Florida Cabinet meeting Tuesday.
Brittany Clark / Florida Governor's Office

Hours before a deadline set by a federal judge for Florida to overhaul its felon voting rights restoration system, the state’s Executive Clemency Board was given more time by a federal appeals court. Governor Rick Scott canceled an emergency meeting that would’ve seen the board vote on changes.

(from right to left) Marion County Sheriff Billy Woods, Deputy Jimmy Long, Long's wife, and Gov. Rick Scott, following SRO Long's Medal Of Heroism presentation.
Governor Rick Scott's Office

Governor Rick Scott has awarded the Medal of Heroism to the school resource officer credited with taking quick action to help prevent another mass school shooting last week.

Photo of a water passage cutting through green brush in the Everglades
Erich Martin

Florida Wildlife Officials are considering an executive order to keep so called “Injurious wildlife species” from being brought into the state. Paul Grey works with Audubon Florida. He says the order is important since Florida is especially susceptible to the negative impact of invasive species.

A manatee mating herd at Coquina Beach in Manatee County
FWC Screenshot

Florida wildlife officials say they’ve received many calls of manatees in distress all over the state. But, officials say a lot of times, the sea cows are just mating.

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