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Abortions Declining in Florida

April 11, 2010 - 6:00pm


Statistics released last week from Florida Right to Life, compiled from data gathered by the state Agency for Health Care Administration, show that Floridians are having fewer abortions.

The number of abortions in Florida dropped in 2009 to 82,038, the lowest levels the state has seen since 1997.

Teacher Performance Pay Shapes CFO Race

April 11, 2010 - 6:00pm


The state's chief financial officer handles money matters in Florida, but as the campaign for the position starts to heat up, it appears that teacher performance pay will be an issue in the coming election, too.

Senate President Jeff Atwater, R-North Palm Beach, the favorite to win the Republican CFO nomination, was a strong supporter of the teacher performance pay plan that passed the Senate earlier in the session and the House early Friday morning.

Florida Democrats Divided on Obama Drilling Plan

April 11, 2010 - 6:00pm


Its rare to see a former Florida Democratic Party chairman taking President Barack Obama to task -- but thats exactly what Scott Maddox is doing on the issue of offshore oil drilling.

Abortions on Decline in Florida

April 8, 2010 - 6:00pm


Statistics released this week from Florida Right to Life -- compiled from data gathered by the state Agency for Health Care Administration -- show that Floridians are having fewer abortions.

The number of abortions in Florida dropped in 2009 to 82,038, the lowest levels the state has seen since 1997.

The number of abortions in Florida peaked back in 2006 with 95,586 abortions performed in the state that year. Since then, the number has decreased, with 91,954 in 2007 and 87,520 in 2008.

Peformance Pay Plan on Its Way to the Governor

April 8, 2010 - 6:00pm


After a marathon debate that dragged into the early hours of Friday -- and increased speculation that Gov. Charlie Crist plans to veto the measure -- the House joined the Senate in passing a bill that creates a performance pay standard for Floridas teachers.

The bill passed 64-55 at 2:26 a.m. with 11 Republicans joining all 44 Democrats in opposing it.

House Tackles Host of Education Bills

April 7, 2010 - 6:00pm


While teacher performance pay dominated the lengthy House session Thursday, lawmakers also passed other measures concerning education, including one that would give voters the chance to loosen class-size restrictions during November's election.

The measure, introduced by Will Weatherford, R-Wesley Chapel, passed 77 to 41, almost on a party-line vote.

A class-size amendment was approved by Florida voters in 2002. The measure would remove caps established by the 2002 statute and allow schools to use the average size of each class.

Political Bits and Pieces

April 7, 2010 - 6:00pm


Candidates keep piling into next year's Jacksonville mayoral race. Publisher Jim Bailey and General Counsel Rick Mullaney joined the Republican field this week, while City Councilwoman Glorious Johnson, initially elected as a Republican, will be running as a Democrat.

Community College Students Rally For Education Changes

April 7, 2010 - 6:00pm


More than 400 community college students rallied at the Capitol early Thursday before spending the day lobbying the Legislature on education issues near and dear to the nearly 1.2 million people enrolled in Florida's 2-year colleges.

Obamacare Lawsuit Stumbles in House

April 7, 2010 - 6:00pm


In the latest chapter of the Florida Republicans pushback against the new federal health-care legislation, the House Rules & Calendar Council met Thursday to discuss a proposed amendment to the state Constitution.

But, even though the measure has more than half of the House members listed as co-sponsors, it sputtered and stalled.

House Roars on, Readying for Teacher Performance-Pay Vote

April 6, 2010 - 6:00pm


Despite a whopping eight-hour Educational Policy Council meeting Monday, the House committee came roaring back for more Wednesday -- including a lengthy discussion on teacher performance pay.

Speaker Larry Cretul, R-Ocala, tried to keep the focus on questioning and hold off debate until Thursday.

There has been lots of, lets just say, confusion about this bill, said Rep. John Legg, R-Port Richey, who introduced the performance pay measure in the House.

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