In The News Today – February 24, 2016

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The Independent Florida:  Editorial: Common sense, not partisanship, can prevail

When we talk about Florida politics, we usually do so in language expressing exasperation and disbelief. There is, after all, plenty to be angry about these days: Statewide, the ongoing battle over whether to allow fracking in Florida has intensified in recent days, and here in Gainesville, we’re contending with how to best correct overbilling and mismanagement on the part of Gainesville Regional Utilities and the Gainesville Renewable Energy Center.


PINAC: Florida Senate Bill 1220: A Poor Solution to Fake Problems

Suspicious E-Mail.  For starters, there is nothing suspicious about the request  for the County employees’ e-mail addresses.  These e-mail addresses are non-exempt public records.  Requestors are often looking for information to compile into a list.   However, if a requestor requests a list, an agency can deny his request if it does not keep the information in that format.  This is because Florida law provides that agencies are not required to create new records in response to a public records request.


SPB: No more ’70s paneling: Florida Senate readies for a refresh

Say goodbye to all those yards of fake-wood laminate: The Florida Senate will be shedding the 1970s look of its chamber with a nearly $5 million renovation this year.


Palm Beach Post: Florida House set to OK public pension changes

TALLAHASSEE — The Florida House pushed forward Tuesday with a controversial bill that would overhaul public retirement benefits, batting away a Democratic amendment looking to separate a widely supported change to death benefits from a contentious effort to place more employees in a 401(k)-style plan.


FOX: FOX 13 Investigates: Sheriff can’t explain missing emails

… and discovered employees went on trips paid for by the vendor, the vendor … Buried in emails the agency produced in response to apublic records … asking for Nocco’s input on a body camera bill in theFlorida Legislature.


CBS: Teacher-student sexual relationships in St. Lucie County schools soars

ST. LUCIE COUNTY — CBS12 has uncovered St. Lucie County Public School District teachers have an unusually high rate of arrests for inappropriate relationships with students.


Tallahassee Democrat: Report: State workforce down by under 7,000 under Scott

Gov. Rick Scott, who campaigned as a conservative business executive intent on shrinking the size of state payrolls while growing private sector jobs in Florida, has presided over a dramatic decline in Florida’s government workforce.


CBS: Incentives Draw War Of Words On Eve Of House Vote

TALLAHASSEE (NSF) – The House is poised to vote Wednesday to revamp how the state distributes incentives to private businesses, but it continues showing scant indication it will go along with Gov. Rick Scott’s request to earmark $250 million for corporate-recruitment efforts.


WFYV: Tornadoes, damaging winds possible in Central Florida Wednesday

A weather system pushing through Central Florida ahead of a cold front is expected to cause significant storms with a possibility of damaging winds and tornadoes, the National Weather Service said.


ABC: Lawsuit Challenges Florida Utilities’ $2B Nuclear Cost Fees

A federal lawsuit has been filed challenging $2 billion in fees charged by Florida’s two largest electric utilities for nuclear plant projects, some of which were never completed.


FOX: Bill aims to shutter Florida’s red light cameras

SARASOTA (FOX 13) – A new bill working it’s way through the Florida House aims to shutter Florida’s red light cameras for good.


AL: Mobile firefighter missing in Pensacola, Florida

A firefighter with Mobile Fiore-Rescue has been listed as a missing person with the Pensacola Police Department.


POLITICO: Senators try ‘herding’ lobbyists to address insurance issue

TALLAHASSEE — Two state senators hosted a standing-room only meeting Tuesday afternoon with insurance and trial bar lobbyists as well as other stakeholders interested in assignment of benefits legislation that could grow more complicated with an expected amendment dealing with attorney fees.


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