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Capital Report: 07-13-2018

Local governments are continuing their battle to hang onto home rule. Regan McCarthy reports that fight is centering around a court case fighting a law that largely preempts local ordinances on firearms.

The League of Women Voters of Florida is suing to block a constitutional amendment that could pave the way for more charter schools. The League says the ballot summary-which voters see on the actual ballot—is different from the language in the amendment, and is vague and misleading.

Attorney Ron Meyer is representing the League in the Lawsuit. He’s also representing the state teachers union in a case against a Florida law that targets the Florida Education Association. Lynn Hatter spoke with Meyer about both lawsuits, starting with the case against Amendment Eight. It’s comprised of three proposals—term limits for local school board members, and mandatory civics education. But it’s the language regarding school district oversight of public schools, that’s triggered the suit.

President Trump’s U-S Supreme Court nominee is already causing partisan divides among Republicans and Democrats. As Sascha Cordner reports, that fight is also making its way to the Sunshine State.

Images of bright-green water caused by harmful algae blooms have taken center stage among ecological and political conversations in Florida. This week, the federal government approved more than 1.5 billion dollars in funding to build a reservoir that takes overflow from Lake Okeechobee elsewhere in an effort to mitigate the algae’s effects. Ryan Dailey recently spoke with Florida Atlantic University’s interim director of the Harbor Branch Oceanic Institute, Dr. Jim Sullivan, to talk algae and what the reservoir stands to do to help.

Environmental Activist Nathaniel Reed died this week (Wednesday) at age 84. AnnMarie Welser reports on the legacy of his career.

Have you ever wondered what the world actually looked like a billion years ago?  A Capital City scientist has helped discover at least a partial answer to that question.  Tom Flanigan reports that finding has made her an overnight media sensation worldwide.