Miami-Dade County

Leslie Ovalle / WLRN News

Polling stations around South Florida opened this morning at 7 a.m. for Primary Election Day, when registered Republicans and Democrats choose their candidates for governor, agriculture commissionerattorney general and U.S. Congress. Local elections also include school board and judicial races. But turnout at many precincts throughout the morning appeared thin.

Miami Herald Archive

Miami-Dade’s increasingly heated debate over how to reconcile broken transit pledges will be moving to court, with a Coral Gables commissioner suing the county and its mayor over using a voter-approved transportation tax to subsidize existing transit rather than expand it.

Pedro Portal / Miami Herald

Marco Rubio announced Tuesday that he will ask federal agencies to oppose the 836 expressway expansion into West Kendall, a major roadblock for Mayor Carlos Gimenez and the Miami-Dade County Commission after they gave preliminary approval for the 14-mile highway in June.

The Republican senator’s alignment with environmentalists, who say the highway would damage the Everglades and cause urban sprawl, could affect the project’s progress due to federal land swaps from the Department of Interior that are needed before construction can begin.

Daniel Bock / Miami Herald

Over the past 20 years, a special team at the Miami-Dade Fire Rescue Department has rushed around South Florida, preventing venomous snake bites from turning fatal. 

Jose Iglesias / Miami Herald

Two undocumented immigrants picked up in Miami-Dade for driving without valid licenses are suing the county for turning them over to immigration authorities under a 2017 policy switch to avoid a promised crackdown by President Donald Trump on so-called “sanctuary” jurisdictions.

SAM TURKEN / WLRN

In a unanimous vote at the Miami-Dade County Commission meeting on Tuesday, concession workers at Miami International Airport were included in the county’s living wage ordinance. While $4.98  may not seem like a lot, it’s a chunk of change Miami International Airport concession workers have been fighting to earn for years.

Wendi Walsh, the secretary and treasurer of Unite Here Local 355, is a member of the union that’s been leading the fight. “They’re not gonna get rich, but they’re gonna be able to put food on the table for their kids, so we’re thrilled,” says Walsh.

Sam Turken / WLRN

Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez and other officials rode an express bus along the South Dade Transitway Corridor on Tuesday morning to test new smart traffic priority signals meant to speed up public and private transit throughout the county. 

Miami Herald Archive

A second raccoon in South Miami-Dade has tested positive for rabies — and that means part of the Southwest Miami-Dade suburbia will be on a rabies alert until Sept. 2, another 60 days.

The alert area is bounded by Southwest 152nd Street on the north, 187th Street on the south, 117th Avenue on the east and 137th Avenue to the west. That doesn't include the main campus of Florida International University, though one person tweeted that he walked past a classroom and saw a raccoon "inside just chillin' ... acting like he paid tuition."

Adamfirst via Wikimedia Commons

Traffic, sea-level rise and the Everglades are colliding after Miami-Dade commissioners voted Wednesday to advance a potential expressway extension to state regulators.

The proposal to extend State Road 836 aims to reduce traffic for commuters in the West Kendall area. Driving the 20 or so miles to downtown Miami during rush hour can take an hour and a half -- or more.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN News

Half of the percussion section is lined up along a classroom wall, with whiteboards to their backs. Each young boy is shaking a shekere — a West African instrument made from a dried gourd and covered with a colorful beaded netting.

The rest of the musicians are sitting nearby in blue plastic chairs with djun djun and djembe drums at their feet. They bang on the instruments with one or two wooden sticks — or just their hands.

They’re laying down the beat for the girls, who are jumping and moving their bodies like waves to the music.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

Hurricane Irma last year strained Miami-Dade's plans for how to handle a major storm and its aftermath, and county leaders are rolling out changes as the 2018 cyclone season begins.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Several South Florida nonprofits are launching five meetings to ensure equality in hurricane recovery efforts, continuing work that began after Hurricane Irma.

Nadege Green / WLRN

Survivors of gun violence from across Miami-Dade gathered at the Sherdavia Jenkins Peace Park  Saturday to share their experiences.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

A plan to use treated wastewater to freshen Florida Power & Light’s troubled nuclear cooling canals will move forward, for now, without meeting strict water standards set for nearby Biscayne Bay.

On Tuesday, Miami-Dade commissioners authorized the county staff to negotiate the deal, but put off setting the standards.

Instead, terms of the costly treatment will be ironed out as the utility and the county staff work out details. Any project will ultimately come back to commissioners for final approval. But by then, critics worry it may be too late.

Courtesy of Miami-Dade County District 8 staff

South Miami-Dade County is a popular destination for cyclists because of its national parks, fruit stands and (by South Florida standards) open roads.

Recent bike-car collisions in the area have prompted a push to educate cyclists and drivers on how to share the roads safely.

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