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Alimony Differences Heat Up outside the Governor's Office

April 12, 2016 - 7:15pm

The scene outside Gov. Rick Scott's office Tuesday may have been even more acrimonious than the alimony bill awaiting his action.

Men, women and a handful of children crammed into a waiting room, some bearing posters and balloons, attempting to bully each other into changing their positions on one of the legislative session's most controversial measures, a proposal that would overhaul the state's alimony laws and change the way judges decide child time-sharing arrangements.

But after a two-hour standoff, the attempts at conversion were futile.

Voting-Rights Groups Blocked From Recouping Legal Fees

March 26, 2016 - 6:00am

Groups that successfully challenged the Florida Legislature's congressional map aren't entitled to recover millions of dollars in legal fees from the state, an appellate court ruled Thursday.

A three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal unanimously rejected arguments from a coalition of voting-rights organizations and a group of voters that their lawyers had essentially done the work of a "private attorney general" while state Attorney General Pam Bondi "sat on the sidelines."

Behind-the-Scenes Push for Gambling Deal Fell Short

March 15, 2016 - 7:15pm

With time running out in the legislative session and a gambling deal all but dead in the Senate, industry lobbyists and the Seminole Tribe scrambled to put together a new deal that included major concessions from the tribe regarding slot machines.

Although the talks never resulted in a piece of legislation, or even a draft bill, they marked the first time in recent history the Seminoles and pari-mutuel operators, traditionally at odds, have worked together to nail down an agreement palatable to the tribe, the pari-mutuel industry and the Legislature.

Marijuana Expansion En Route to the Governor

March 7, 2016 - 7:30pm

Terminally ill patients would have access to marijuana under a measure that would legalize full-strength pot for the first time in Florida if signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott.

The proposal, approved Monday by the Senate, would add cannabis to a list of experimental drugs available to patients diagnosed with illnesses that could result in death within a year without life-saving interventions.

Senate Signs Off on Alimony Overhaul

March 4, 2016 - 8:15pm

The Florida Senate approved an alimony overhaul that would establish formulas for alimony payments and includes a controversial provision dealing with how much time children should spend with their divorced parents.

The proposal, approved in a 24-14 vote Friday, is a compromise with the House, which originally objected to the inclusion of the child time-sharing provision. The measure now goes to the House.

House Gambling Plan on a Roll

February 29, 2016 - 11:30pm

THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, February 29, 2016……Calling it a "love note" to the Senate, a key House committee Monday signed off on a sweeping gambling bill that would ratify a $3 billion agreement with the Seminole Tribe and allow pari-mutuels in at least five counties to add slot machines.

Gambling Bills Likely to Spark High-Stakes Debate

February 4, 2016 - 11:15pm

House and Senate leaders will roll out gambling bills Friday that would allow the Seminole Tribe to add craps and roulette at its casinos, potentially do away with dog racing and most horse racing and open the door for slot machines in Palm Beach County

Late Thursday, Senate Regulated Industries Chairman Rob Bradley and his House counterpart, Regulatory Affairs Chairman Jose Felix Diaz, were working on details in the two proposals, slated for votes next week in both committees.

Scott, Seminoles Try to Sell Gambling Deal

February 1, 2016 - 8:30pm

Gov. Rick Scott used a joint press conference Monday with the Seminole Tribe to pitch the economic impact of a proposed $3 billion gambling agreement now in the hands of the Legislature

For Scott, the deal is all about jobs.

During an hour-long presentation by the Seminoles about expansion plans, the tribe's representatives said that more than 3,600 workers would lose their jobs if lawmakers don't sign off on the proposed gambling deal, known as a "compact."

State Targets Pari-Mutuels over Card Games

January 27, 2016 - 3:00pm

Florida gambling regulators filed complaints this week against seven pari-mutuels over a lucrative type of card games, accusing the facilities of illegally operating the games more than three years after state officials first approved them.

State Moves Forward with Medical Marijuana Despite Challenges

January 11, 2016 - 7:15pm

Florida health officials are holding to a deadline next month for the state's first medical marijuana businesses to seek permission to begin growing non-euphoric cannabis, even with hearings in license challenges stacked up through mid-summer.




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