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BP Settlement Money Starts Flowing to the Panhandle

April 30, 2018 - 11:45am
BP Oil Spill
BP settlement money is headed to new water and sewer lines for an industrial park, technical-education programs in two counties and expansion of the Port of Panama City.
 

Shark Fishing Draws State Attention

April 25, 2018 - 3:00pm

Shore-based shark fishing, which attracts sharks already near land to feed in areas that often have low visibility, is increasing in conflict with where people swim and surf.

And now, amid calls to restrict or ban shark fishing from beaches, piers and bridges, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission on Wednesday directed staff members to craft new rules.

'Warm, Welcoming Message' to Canada Pays Off

April 23, 2018 - 5:45pm

Florida’s tourism arm is touting marketing efforts that attracted an increase in travelers from America’s northern neighbor, less than a year after admitting the state had taken its Canadian visitors for granted.

Business Interests among Group Fighting Immigration Verification Proposal

April 12, 2018 - 6:15pm

A wide-ranging coalition that includes a major Republican donor, cruise-line officials, agricultural interests and former pro basketball players is seeking to halt a proposed constitutional amendment that would require Florida businesses to verify the immigration status of new employees.

Patronis, Shaw Reel in Money for Cabinet Races

April 11, 2018 - 1:15pm
State Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, the only Cabinet member able to run for another term in November, brought in nearly $500,000 in contributions last month as he waits to see if he will face a Republican primary challenge.
 
And four of the candidates seeking to replace term-limited Attorney General Pam Bondi recorded six-figure fundraising months in March, topped by Democrat Sean Shaw, a state House member from Tampa who raised more than $200,000.
 

Forecast a Glimmer of Good News for Citrus Growers

April 10, 2018 - 4:15pm

For the second time in a week, Florida citrus growers got what could be considered good news for the struggling industry.

A forecast Tuesday from the U.S. Department of Agriculture showed this season’s projected orange crop holding steady for the third consecutive month.

The estimate followed an announcement Friday by U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue that anxiously awaited disaster-relief programs for farmers who suffered damages in Hurricane Irma will be in place by mid-July.

Trump Expected to Loom over Scott-Nelson Battle

April 9, 2018 - 5:45pm

More than $100 million will likely be spent during the next seven months as two of Florida’s top elected officials go head-to-head in the mid-term contest for a spot in the U.S. Senate.

The long-anticipated contest in which Gov. Rick Scott will try to unseat U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson became official on Monday.

Key issues that could shape the contest include the mass shootings at Pulse nightclub in Orlando and at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland and hurricanes Irma and Maria.

Florida Republican Leaders: We Can Crash the Blue Wave

April 7, 2018 - 7:00pm

Florida Republican leaders who gathered this weekend in Tampa believe they can hold back a Democratic wave in November to keep the “Trump agenda alive.”

But to retain congressional and legislative majorities and to unseat Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, that means ramping up messaging about economic growth, boosting turnout, particularly among voters who request absentee ballots, and countering what the GOP describes as “mainstream media” narratives of looming Democratic victories.

Irma Agricultural Aid Slated to Start in Summer

April 6, 2018 - 6:45pm

A program to distribute federal disaster aid to Florida farmers hit by Hurricane Irma will be set up within the next 100 days, U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced Friday.

“USDA (the U.S. Department of Agriculture) is working as quickly as possible to develop procedures and a system by which affected producers can access disaster assistance,” Perdue said in a prepared statement.

The announcement added that “sign-up for the new program, authorized by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, will begin no later than July 16,” about 100 days from now.

Backroom Briefing: TaxWatch Trots out Turkeys

April 5, 2018 - 3:15pm

Gov. Rick Scott overlooked $109.2 million when making budget vetoes, according to Florida TaxWatch, which, for the second time in three years, was beaten to the punch by the governor in releasing its annual “Budget Turkey” list.

TaxWatch this week released a list of 87 projects --- collectively worth $147.5 million --- that were pushed by individual lawmakers and that the non-profit group argued should not have been included in the $88.7 billion state budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1.

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