Law-abiding Floridians should be allowed to openly carry firearms in public, a gun-rights groups argued Wednesday to the Florida Supreme Court on behalf of a man arrested four years ago while strolling with a visibly holstered weapon in Fort Pierce.
Nearly $3.7 billion is projected to be spent --- through state, local and private dollars --- over the next five years to handle growing international trade at the majority of Florida seaports, according to a report released Monday by the Florida Ports Council.
The spending outline, which comes as the global economy sputters but Florida's ports record growth in cargo tonnage and cruise passengers, is a $140 million increase --- 4 percent --- from a projected five-year capital improvement plan released a year ago
Lisa Edgar, the longest-serving member of the Florida Public Service Commission, will not seek a fourth term on the state's utility regulatory board.
Edgar, who did not submit an application for reappointment to the $131,000-a-year position before a Tuesday deadline, said in a prepared statement she intends to use her "regulatory and governmental experience as I pursue new endeavors and other career opportunities.”
The impasse over Florida's next insurance commissioner ended Friday.
Remaining in-house, Gov. Rick Scott and state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater --- in their third attempt to reach a joint recommendation on the high-profile job --- agreed to promote Deputy Commissioner David Altmaier to become the state's top insurance regulator.
As commissioner, Altmaier, who a decade ago was working as a high-school math teacher and track coach in Kentucky, will see his salary increase from $115,000 a year to $165,000 a year.
Palm Harbor resident Jeffrey Bragg and state Rep. Bill Hager, R-Delray Beach, have been asked back to interview again with the Florida Cabinet for the state insurance commissioner job next week.
But there still doesn't appear to be a consensus between Gov. Rick Scott and Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, who must jointly recommend the replacement for outgoing Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty.
After failing to reach agreement last month, it remained unclear Monday whether Gov. Rick Scott and state Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater will be able to find common ground on the appointment of Florida's next insurance commissioner.
The state has attracted 16 additional candidates for the position, bringing to 71 the number of applicants. Cabinet aides are expected to discuss the latest recommendations from Scott and Atwater during a meeting Wednesday.
State Rep. Reggie Fullwood, a three-term Democratic lawmaker from Jacksonville, was indicted Friday on federal charges that allege he used campaign donations for personal use at grocery, jewelry and liquor stores.
United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley III announced in a news release that Fullwood was charged with 10 counts of wire fraud and four counts of failure to file federal income-tax returns for 2010 through 2013.
To conceal the embezzlement of campaign funds, the indictment alleges that Fullwood submitted fraudulent campaign expenditure reports to the state.
When Florida voters went to the polls in 2014, they saw little competition for state Senate seats.
But then came redistricting. And as updated campaign-finance totals rolled in Monday, it was apparent that candidates --- and their contributors --- expect some heavily contested Senate races this year.
More money will be floated yearly to the state's 15 seaports under a wide-ranging transportation bill signed into law Monday by Gov. Rick Scott.
The measure (HB 7027) boosts the minimum annual funding for the Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development program --- administered by the Florida Ports Council --- from $15 million to $25 million.