State

MORGAN CHALLENGES MEDICAL MARIJUANA SMOKING BAN

July 07, 2017 - 09:31

By DARA KAM THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, July 6, 2017......... Saying Floridians knew what they were voting on in November, Orlando trial lawyer John Morgan on Thursday followed through on threats to sue the state over a smoking ban included in a new law carrying out a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana.

Morgan, who largely bankrolled the medical-marijuana ballot initiative, had repeatedly threatened to launch a legal challenge over smoking, which he maintains was permitted in the amendment supported by more than 71 percent of Florida voters last fall.

JUDGE STRIKES DOWN `STAND YOUR GROUND' CHANGES

July 04, 2017 - 09:36

By JIM TURNER -- THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, July 3, 2017 .......... A Miami judge on Monday ruled that a change to the state's “stand your ground” self-defense law signed nearly a month ago by Gov. Rick Scott, intended to better protect the rights of defendants, is unconstitutional.

Supporters of the controversial law, approved by the GOP-dominated Legislature earlier this year, called the ruling “a notable setback” and predicted an appeal.

Cloud conversion bill vetoed

July 03, 2017 - 10:57

A bill dealing with state infrastructure technology, sponsored by Representative Blaise Ingoglia has been vetoed by Gov. Rick Scott.

The bill would have moved the state toward utilizing cloud technology. Ingoglia stated that if state agencies migrated to commercial cloud products, then millions in tax dollars could be saved. HB 5301 also would have created a cybersecurity task force, but Ingoglia emphasized that the major cost saver is cloud conversion.

ROSY OUTLOOK FOR STATE PENSION FUND

July 01, 2017 - 14:33

By LLOYD DUNKELBERGER
THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, June 30, 2017 .......... Florida's $155 billion pension fund is on track to show a positive gain for the eighth straight year, as the state's fiscal year ended on Friday.

Although the final number will not be calculated for some time, State Board of Administration officials said they expected the return to be near a Wednesday estimate showing the fund was up 14.24 percent for the fiscal year.

FLORIDA'S BUDGET, NEW LAWS BEGIN JULY 1

June 29, 2017 - 19:17

By JIM TURNER THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, June 29, 2017 .......... Rideshare services, such as Lyft and Uber, will have to comply with statewide rules, and students and teachers will be allowed to express their religious beliefs at public schools, under new laws that will go into effect Saturday.

The changes --- including two bills from the special session --- are among 125 revisions to Florida statutes that hit the books on July 1.

JUSTICES APPEAR SKEPTICAL OF PROSECUTOR'S ARGUMENTS ON DEATH PENALTY

June 28, 2017 - 19:56

By DARA KAM -- THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, June 28, 2017 .......... Florida Supreme Court justices appeared highly skeptical of a Central Florida state attorney's assertion that prosecutors have absolute discretion in death-penalty cases during arguments Wednesday in a legal dispute between the prosecutor and Gov. Rick Scott.

SCOTT SIGNS FIERCELY DEBATED EDUCATION BILL

June 15, 2017 - 19:57

BRANDON LARRABEE: THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, June 15, 2017......... Gov. Rick Scott signed a controversial and wide-ranging education bill Thursday, brushing aside nearly unanimous opposition from the state's major education organizations.

The 278-page measure (HB 7069), which didn't emerge in final form until the final days of the regular legislative session, deals with everything from school testing to recess.

Update on local state appropriation requests

June 13, 2017 - 12:39

(STAFF)

Two appropriation bills sponsored by Representative Ingoglia were vetoed by the Governor last week. A $425,000 appropriations request to help fund the construction of The Arc Nature Coast Life Skills Center on their Neff Lake Campus was vetoed along with The City of Brooksville’s $350,000 request to fund the Horselake Creek - Southeastern Branch Drainage Restoration Project.

Governor Scott also vetoed $4 million in funding for a wellness center for St. Leo University. The legislation was sponsored by Rep. Daniel Burgess.

SCOTT WIELDS VETO PEN ON NEW BUDGET

June 02, 2017 - 20:30

By JIM TURNER AND LLOYD DUNKELBERGER
THE NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, June 2, 2017......... Gov. Rick Scott on Friday used his veto pen to slash $410 million in legislative projects across the state, saying they failed to “provide a great return for Florida families.”

In signing the bulk of an $80 billion-plus budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1, Scott told reporters the savings from vetoes will help cover a planned increase in public school funding, tourism marketing and economic-development efforts. Those issues will be a focus of a three-day special legislative session that will start Wednesday.

A review of legislation impacting Brooksville & Hernando County

May 31, 2017 - 18:59

(STAFF)

“Things aren’t as bad as when I was here last time. It was a tough session,” said Shawn Foster of Sunrise Consulting Group to the Brooksville City Council on May 15th.

Foster continued, “it was the most onslaught attack that I’d ever seen on local rule in 20 years as staff or as a lobbyist. I think it’ll be back… The leadership that was there, they’ll still be there next year and they’ll still be in charge.”

FAILED

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