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Capital Report: 11-15-2013

This week, it’s been almost impossible to escape the unrelenting coverage of Obamacare.  The persistent problems with the federal sign-up web site, millions of individual plans cancelled.  Florida has certainly not been immune to all the debate and uncertainties about health care.  For instance, there’s more than one insurance provider in the northern part of the state, but you wouldn’t know it just by looking at the federal government’s health insurance exchange web site.  One of the region’s top insurers isn’t on it and, as Lynn Hatter reports, that’s leaving many people with essentially no choice at all.

If you want to get parents of school-age kids REALLY in an uproar, simply suggest a change in the time school starts.   A debate over delaying the start of the school day for Florida’s high school students is headed for the state Legislature this session. As Jessica Palombo reports, a bill filed by Panhandle lawmaker Matt Gaetz would prohibit high schools from starting earlier than 8 a.m.

If you’re hearing this story in your car, think about how fast you’re driving.  Is it over the speed limit? If you’re speeding, know that if a bill pushed by a bipartisan team of Senators becomes law, your speed might soon be five miles per hour closer to being legal. But as Stan Jastrzebski reports, insurance industry officials and law enforcement officers both say it’d be better if the bill was stuck in neutral.

To keep more inmates from using forged paperwork to escape prison, Florida officials are thinking about moving all court orders into the electronic realm.  As Ryan Benk reports, a system the state’s lawyers already use might be just the ticket.

Florida lawmakers say more needs to be done to protect the state’s children from second-hand smoke and cigarettes. A pair of bills to that effect has been filed for the upcoming legislative session, but Regan McCarthy reports the bill’s opponents say the state’s lawmakers are just blowing smoke.