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What's Going on the Week of April 21

April 22, 2019 - 7:30am

Buckle up. The 2019 legislative session is about ready to pick up speed.

When lawmakers come back from the holiday weekend, they will be poised to start budget negotiations and to try to resolve a laundry list of major --- and controversial --- issues. That means a sprint toward the scheduled May 3 end of the 60-day session.

What's Going on the Week of April 14

April 15, 2019 - 9:00am

In 1988, Florida lawmakers approved a bill requiring parental consent before minors could have abortions.

The next year, the state Supreme Court issued a controversial ruling that said the requirement was unconstitutional.

Now, three decades later, the debate is back. The Florida House during the coming week could pass a parental-consent measure, and the Senate also has started moving forward with its version of the bill.

What's Going on the Week of April 7

April 8, 2019 - 9:00am
Florida Capitol complex

As he built his administration, Gov. Ron DeSantis looked early and often to the Florida House.

First, he picked then-Rep. Jeanette Nunez, a Miami Republican, to be his running mate. And after they were elected in November, he tapped former House Speaker Richard Corcoran to serve as education commissioner, then-Rep. Halsey Beshears to become secretary of the Department of Business and Professional Regulation, then-Rep. Danny Burgess to lead the Department of Veterans’ Affairs and then-Rep. Jared Moskowitz to direct the Division of Emergency Management.

What's Going on the Week of March 31

April 1, 2019 - 9:00am
Constitutional Revision Commission

When Floridians went to the polls in November, they approved 11 constitutional amendments on issues ranging from restoring felons’ voting rights to banning greyhound racing.

Now, it’s clear that many Republican lawmakers hope to avoid a repeat of such ballot-driven decision-making in the future.

Proposals are floating in the Legislature that would make it harder for citizens and groups to put constitutional amendments on the ballot --- and make it tougher to pass amendments that get there.

What's Going on the Week of March 24

March 25, 2019 - 8:30am

Florida lawmakers might want to rest up.

With about a third of the 60-day legislative session finished, the coming week is going to be filled with some of the highest-profile --- and noisiest --- issues of the year.

Felons’ voting rights. Canadian drug imports. Fracking. Armed teachers. The list goes on.

And in the middle of the week, House and Senate appropriations committees are expected to take up proposed state budgets that are in the neighborhood of $90 billion.

MONDAY, MARCH 25, 2019

Legislature:

What's Going on the Week of March 17

March 18, 2019 - 7:00am
When lawmakers meet each year, they consider hundreds of bills. But they only have one must-do: pass a state budget.
 
The outlines of a 2019-2020 budget will start to take shape during the coming week as House and Senate appropriations subcommittees discuss initial spending plans for areas such as education, health care and the environment.
 

By the Numbers: February Campaign Cash

March 16, 2019 - 9:00am
State legislative candidates faced a Monday deadline for filing reports showing campaign-finance activity through Feb. 28. Here are the top fundraisers in February in Senate and House races. These totals reflect money raised for campaign accounts and do not include money raised by political committees affiliated with many legislators.
 
2020 Senate races:
 
--- Rep. Loranne Ausley, D-Tallahassee, Senate District 3: $104,337
 
--- Sen. Jose Javier Rodriguez, D-Miami, District 37: $66,175
 

What's Going on the Week of March 10

March 11, 2019 - 9:00am
Ron DeSantis

Gov. Ron DeSantis could be on the verge of getting his first major legislative victory.

The House is expected during the coming week to approve a bill that would allow patients to smoke medical marijuana, a proposal that has already passed the Senate.

Voters in 2016 passed a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana. Lawmakers in 2017 approved a bill to carry out the constitutional amendment and included a ban on smokable marijuana.

Ron DeSantis' First State of the State: 'Be Bold ... We Can Achieve Excellence'

March 5, 2019 - 4:00pm
DeSantis' State of the State address 2019

Following is Gov. Ron DeSantis’ State of the State address, as prepared, on the first day of the 2019 legislative session:

Speaker Oliva Focuses on Health Care Choices in Opening Remarks

March 5, 2019 - 12:00pm
Jose Oliva

Following are House Speaker Jose Oliva’s remarks, as prepared, on the first day of the 2019 legislative session:

Thank you. I’d like to offer a warm welcome to all that are joining us today. Especially all of our friends and family. It is through their sacrifice and constant support that we can dedicate ourselves to this work, we thank you.

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