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Capital Report: 01-17-2014

Former House Majority Leader Carlos Lopez-Cantera has been hailed as a person who can help get Governor Rick Scott’s 2014 legislative agenda off the ground as Scott’s new second-In-command. But, as Sascha Cordner reports, it’s the fact he’ll be Florida’s first Hispanic Lieutenant Governor that has all sides talking.

Florida education officials are now preparing to make a series of changes to the state’s English and math requirements. The revisions come nearly three years after Florida and more than 40 other states adopted those same standards, called Common Core. But as Lynn Hatter reports, the changes proposed to those standards, and Florida’s efforts to distance itself from the name, may not be enough to placate critics.

Florida has some of the broadest public records laws of any state in the country.  Those laws, combined with the Florida Sunshine Law, gives members of the public access to most government meetings and documents collected by state agencies.  But Regan McCarthy reports each year, lawmakers file bills that seek to hide specific government records and activities in the shade.

Archaeologists working on an island just off Miami believe they’ve found a unique stone Indian burial mound. But as Jessica Palombo reports, with part of the site underwater, the team is battling a rising sea that threatens to cover the East Coast’s low-lying areas within the century.

Some Florida lawmakers seem to propose more legislation than others.  As Stan Jastrzebski reports, that’s no accident…even though there are underlying systems which help determine which lawmakers file scads of bills and which file very few.