Florida Legislature

AL DIAZ / MIAMI HERALD

Plans for a statewide office focused on rising sea levels and more electronic-vehicle charging stations along Florida highways are moving forward in the Senate, as Republicans have become more open to addressing climate change and emissions issues.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

Some Florida dentists, hygienists, students and advocates are promoting a legislative proposal to create a new tier of providers who could offer routine procedures to people who lack access to oral health care.

Anger at Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission continues a year after Floridians approved several new plans put on the November 2018 ballot. 

Gov. Ron DeSantis Pitches New Teacher Bonus Program

Nov 15, 2019
Al Diaz / Miami Herald

TALLAHASSEE --- Gov. Ron DeSantis wants the Florida Legislature to abandon the embattled “Best and Brightest” bonus program and replace it with a new plan to offer bonuses to public-school teachers and principals.

The governor said Thursday his proposed bonus program aims to provide incentives to teachers and principals to work at schools in low-income areas. He said he will propose spending $300 million on the program.

“We think this is an improvement on the Best and Brightest program,” DeSantis said at a news conference in Vero Beach.

Citing what they say is a tremendous public and private cost to Floridians from divorce, two Republican state legislators want to create a “Florida Guide to Healthy Marriages.” They’ve filed a bill to do so for the coming legislative session.

MSD
Peter Haden / WLRN

In the more than 20 months since the deadly shooting in Parkland, the state has passed a number of laws to address school safety, including the controversial measure allowing teachers to be armed. 

DeSantis' Key Proposals Face Early Obstacles In Capitol

Oct 30, 2019

Ambitious proposals by Gov. Ron DeSantis to raise minimum teacher salaries and require employers to verify the lawful immigration status for workers collided Tuesday with early concerns from Florida’s lawmakers.

News Service of Florida

Suspended Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel faced a legislative showdown Monday in the fight to get his job back, amid procedural wrangling that began before senators even began considering his fate.

Latvala: Budget Cuts May Be Necessary To Pay For Teacher Raises

Oct 18, 2019

A House education panel on Thursday began delving into the issue of raising teacher pay, with a key lawmaker saying that while "everything is on the table," the panel still needs to figure out where the money would come from.

Florida lawmakers Monday dug into issues involving climate change and greenhouse gas emissions, phrases mostly kept under wraps by state Republican leaders before last year’s elections.

Sebastián Ballestas / Miami Herald

The fight over the future of the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority just hit another roadblock. On Monday night, attorney's for the Florida Department of Transportation asked an appeals court to dismiss a constitutional challenge to a new law that would dissolve the MDX. 

Associated Press

Gov. Ron DeSantis is facing a showdown about one of his highest-profile decisions: the ouster of Broward County Sheriff Scott Israel, whose fate now rests in the hands of the Florida Senate.

The Republican governor’s legal team failed to persuade a Senate special master that Israel’s suspension was warranted, but DeSantis has a cadre of allies who might have the power to do what his lawyers could not.

Ryan Dailey / WFSU

The future of the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority remains unclear after a recent ruling by a Leon County Judge that the legislation ordering its dissolution violated the “home rule” in the state’s constitution. Now there's a fight between state lawmakers and the current head of the MDX, Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez, over whether members of the county should maintain control.  

Sam Turken / WLRN

With Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity expected to announce soon a new minimum wage for 2020, South Florida workers who earn around the state minimum are calling for a gradual wage increase to $15 per hour.

The state’s minimum wage is currently $8.46 per hour. Later in October, the state is expected to announce an annual increase to the wage to keep it adjusted for inflation.

Over the past seven years, the annual increases have varied, but none have been more than 20 cents.

Florida Lawmakers Seek Money For Local Projects

Sep 30, 2019

Lawmakers are already seeking about $120 million for projects and programs in their local communities, while the latest state revenue estimates have spurred the House budget leader to urge “restraint” as the 2020 legislative session nears.

And based on past sessions, the number of local funding proposals — sometimes derided by critics as “pork” or “turkeys”— will soon explode.

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