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House Looks to Limit Local Regulations

February 22, 2019 - 9:00am
Rep. Michael Grant

A broad proposal aimed at curbing local business regulations advanced in a House subcommittee Thursday, despite criticism that it could block ordinances that prohibit “puppy mills” or the regulation of fertilizer use near waterways.

The Republican-dominated House Business & Professions Subcommittee voted 9-5 along party lines to approve the measure (HB 3), which seeks to eliminate existing local business regulations as of July 1, 2021 and prevent new regulations.

State Clamps Down on Shore-Based Shark Fishing

February 21, 2019 - 9:30am

Shore-based anglers will no longer be able to use fish parts, bones and blood to attract sharks, as critics of shark fishing would like to see lines cast farther away from beachgoers.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, meeting Wednesday in Gainesville, approved several shore-based shark fishing changes that will go into effect July 1.

Backroom Briefing: Concealed Carry Could Stay Put

February 8, 2019 - 9:00am

Florida’s most influential gun-rights lobbyist says don’t move --- at least for now --- the state’s concealed-weapons licensing program from the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.

But in a thin olive branch to Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, National Rifle Association lobbyist Marion Hammer in a letter posted online Tuesday also made clear she and the other concealed-carry permit holders in the state --- there were 1.95 million as of Jan. 15 --- will be watching how Fried handles the high-profile program.

Panama City's Trumbull Files 41 Bills in One Day for Hurricane-Ravaged Panhandle

February 7, 2019 - 6:00am

Rep. Jay Trumbull is casting a wide net in search of money for his storm-ravaged Panhandle district.

As House members continued to submit projects to be considered for the state’s 2019-2020 budget, Trumbull on Tuesday submitted 41 bills --- worth a total of $253 million --- all with an eye on Hurricane Michael recovery.

Trumbull, a Panama City Republican who represents most of hard-hit Bay County, called it “a good start.”

$625 Million of DeSantis' Budget Proposal Will Go to Everglades and Other Water Efforts

January 30, 2019 - 9:30am

Water protection and restoration projects, including the fight against red tide and the continued cleanup of the Everglades, will account for $625 million of a proposed budget that Gov. Ron DeSantis said he will roll out Friday for state lawmakers to consider.

DeSantis on Tuesday outlined part of his environmental budget proposal during an appearance at Rookery Bay Environmental Learning Center in Naples. He also named Chauncey Goss and Ron Bergeron to the South Florida Water Management District Governing Board.

Lawmakers to Look Again at Job Growth Fund

January 29, 2019 - 6:00am

An economic-development fund created as a compromise after a battle between former Gov. Rick Scott and House leaders could be short-lived.

Senate Appropriations Chairman Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, said a close look is warranted at the $85-million-a-year Job Growth Grant Fund, which was passed by the Legislature in 2017.

“I’ve always had some concerns about the parameters of that money,” Bradley told reporters last week.

Ethics Officials Slap Andrew Gillum with 'Probable Cause' He Accepted Gifts

January 25, 2019 - 3:30pm
Andrew Gillum and Adam Corey on a NYC boat ride

State ethics officials have found probable cause that former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, who narrowly lost the governor’s race last year and continues to draw national political attention, violated Florida ethics laws by accepting gifts from lobbyists.

Feds Boost Money for Hurricane Debris Removal

January 25, 2019 - 6:00am
Gov. Ron DeSantis in Marianna Thursday

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced in Marianna Thursday the White House is extending the number of days debris cleanup from Hurricane Michael will be fully reimbursed by the federal government.

Next Steps Eyed in Fight Against Water Woes

January 24, 2019 - 6:00am
Holly Raschein

Local governments have spent $17.3 million the state provided to combat outbreaks of red tide and toxic blue-green algae, which have caused massive fish kills and fouled waters in coastal areas for more than a year.

DeSantis Yanks Dozens of Appointments

January 19, 2019 - 6:00am
Ron DeSantis

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday rescinded 46 of the last-minute appointments former Gov. Rick Scott, now a member of the U.S. Senate, made in his final days in office.

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