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Vacation Rental Giant on Winning Streak in Florida Courts

November 1, 2019 - 6:00am
Lighthouse Point vacation rental

Vacation rental marketing giant Airbnb began the year under a withering attack in Florida from newly seated Gov. Ron DeSantis for its ban on Israeli West Bank rentals.

But since rescinding that policy -- and receiving a nod of appreciation from DeSantis in Jerusalem in May -- Airbnb has been on a winning streak in the Sunshine State, especially in court.

The leading digital platform in Florida’s $31 billion short-term vacational rental industry, Airbnb won two major court victories this month.

After 10 Glorious Years, Sunshine State News and I Are Passing the Baton

November 1, 2019 - 6:00am

You probably can't imagine how much fun I've had at Sunshine State News over the last 10 years. I don't think anybody could. 

How many 65-year-old legacy journalists, trussed in a straitjacket of newsprint, get a chance to jump into the future overnight? Before Sunshine I was clueless about online news production. Sophisticated search engines and algorithms? A foreign language. The company was taking a massive risk on me. But I'm so grateful they did. I was getting a chance to create something that had no equivalent. 

Florida Continues to Flow Down History's River

November 1, 2019 - 6:00am
The Ribault Monument

Situated on the Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve and overlooking the St. Johns River, the view from the Ribault Monument is one of Jacksonville’s hidden gems. From that point on St. Johns Bluff, you have a commanding view of the river with a nice panorama of human activity, marshlands, trees and the open sky.

Gotten Away With It

Florida-Georgia Water War Set to Play Out in a Federal Courtroom in New Mexico

October 31, 2019 - 6:00am
Apalachicola River, known as "America's Most Endangered River"

Albuquerque is a long way from Apalachicola.

But when a federal judge in the New Mexico city hears arguments next week in a long-running water war between Florida and Georgia, the small Panhandle community will be at the center of the case.

Senior U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Paul J. Kelly, appointed as a special master by the U.S. Supreme Court, will weigh whether Georgia uses too much water from a river system that flows into Apalachicola Bay.

Minimum Wage Proposal First Measure to Qualify for 2020 Ballot

October 31, 2019 - 6:00am
John Morgan and Ron DeSantis

The Florida Division of Elections has confirmed sponsors of a proposed constitutional amendment to raise the state’s minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2026 have secured enough validated voter signatures to qualify for the November 2020 ballot.

According to the DOE, as of Tuesday afternoon, Florida For A Fair Wage had submitted 766,352 signatures, surpassing the 766,200 required to be presented to voters in a statewide election.

Florida's Waltz Co-Sponsors Puerto Rico Statehood Bill

October 31, 2019 - 6:00am
Michael Waltz

U.S. Rep. Michael Waltz, R-Fla. has co-sponsored a bill to make Puerto Rico the 51st state.

H.R. 4901, the Puerto Rico Statehood Admission Act, would require a "Statehood Yes-No" vote by both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate for the island. This is the same precedent established for the admission process of Alaska and Hawaii.

The legislation is sponsored by U.S. Reps. Jenniffer González Colón, R-P.R., and Jose Serrano, D-N.Y.

Trick or Delta Force

Competing GOP Forces Will Duke It Out over E-Verify in 2020

October 30, 2019 - 6:00am
Tomato pickers in Central Florida

Even before Sen. Tom Lee, R-Thonotosassa, filed a bill that would require all state employers to use the federal E-Verify system to validate workers’ immigration status -- a priority for Gov. Ron DeSantis -- the same Republican-aligned forces that stymied similar legislation two of the last three sessions were campaigning against it.


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