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December 9, 2022

Next week, Florida lawmakers will again meet outside the regular legislative session to try to stabilize the state’s troubled property insurance market. The legislature passed a few measures aimed at reducing the rising cost of homeowner’s insurance when they met in the spring, but legislative leaders say more work is needed. Valerie Crowder spoke with the state’s Insurance Consumer Advocate Tasha Carter about how lawmakers could best help policy holders.

The Florida Supreme Court took up an objection to what’s called “Marsy’s Law” this week. As Gina Jordan reports, the essence of the argument is that the law shields the identities of police officers as well as crime victims, when it comes to public disclosure.

A federal judge will decide later this month whether Governor Ron DeSantis unjustly suspended Hillsborough State Attorney Andrew Warren. The twice-elected Democrat sued - saying his First Amendment rights were violated - and a federal trial wrapped up late last week. DeSantis suspended Warren in August over his signing of statements that said he would not pursue criminal charges in cases involving abortion or gender transition treatments. WUSF's Steve Newborn talks about the case with Judge Scott Stephens. He's retired from Florida's 13th Circuit Court and is now an adjunct professor at Stetson University College of Law.

The holiday season always seems to bring the plight of the less fortunate into sharper relief. This year is no exception. Every other Saturday, a line of cars stretches across the grounds of the Shady Grove Number One Primitive Baptist Church in east Leon County. They’re there for the church’s biweekly food distribution. Last month the line was 150 cars, and it grows by about 10 households with each distribution. As Margie Menzel reports, the need isn’t going away.

It’s been two and a half months since Hurricane Ian struck Southwest Florida and crossed the state. Cleanup crews have collected more than 23 million cubic yards of debris left by the category 4 storm. That’s roughly enough to fill the Empire State Building more than a dozen times. But many piles remain, and WUSF’s Kerry Sheridan reports a couple in Manatee County found a creative way to spruce up theirs.

A prominent anthropologist believes Spanish explorer Hernando DeSoto took a different path than originally thought after that famous Tallahassee Christmas celebration in 1539. Tom Flanigan reports.