In The News Today – January 25, 2016

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FLORIDA PUBLIC EMPLOYEES

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CNN: Shaq, Florida officer surprise kids with a basketball game

(CNN)When  White Florida police Officer Bobby played street basketball with a group of neighborhood kids this month, he promised he’d return for a rematch.

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Insurance Journal: Citizens Releases Analysis of Increasing Florida Water Loss Costs

Water loss claims, exacerbated by assignment of benefits, are driving higher rates in South Florida and increasingly across the state, according to a just released analysis conducted by Citizens Property Insurance Corp. for state insurance regulators. The insurer says the data confirms that the state is facing a serious issue that needs to be addressed.

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Palm Beach Post:  FHP: Florida man drives off with trooper hanging from car

The trooper was hanging out of the passenger’s side window before being thrown from the car and rolling into a grass yard by the side of the road, according to the Sentinel.

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Washington Post: Critical habitat identified for 2 endangered Florida cacti

VERO BEACH, Fla. (AP) – Federal officials have designated over 7,800 acres as critical habitat for two endangered Florida cacti.

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Insurance Journal: Two Florida Clinic Owners Charged With Defrauding Insurers

January 24, 2016The Florida Department of Financial Services’ Division of Insurance Fraud (DIF) announced the arrest of two unlicensed clinic owners from Miami-Dade County. Noel Ruiz of Miami and Alberto B Franco of Hialeah were accused of being involved in a “straw owner” scheme that defrauded numerous insurance companies, resulting in more than $650,000 in financial losses.

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Bradenton Herald: Florida health policies criticized for surge in HIV infections

TALLAHASSEE — Florida leads the nation in new HIV infections, but it’s not being treated as a crisis by Gov. Rick Scott or the state’s top health officer, Dr. John Armstrong.

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Orlando Sentinel: Florida housing bill would help homeless families, backers say

Local lawmakers are backing a bill they say will free up millions in state dollars to help homeless families get out of rent-by-the-week motels and into apartments and homes.

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Florida Politics: LENNY CURRY PITCHES PENSION TAX TO JAX EMPLOYEES

Another one in an informal series of epistles from Jacksonville Mayor Lenny Curry to Jacksonville employees went out Friday: this on the pension tax.

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Florida Politics: SAM MOUSA TO JAX EMPLOYEES: STOP FEEDING THE METER

On at least one public occasion, Jacksonville’s Chief Administrative Officer, Sam Mousa,groused that it’s cheaper to feed the meter and park on the street than it is to use the city’s parking garages.

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Daily KOS: How the Obama economy overcame Republican sabotage

As Barack Obama marks his seventh year in office, the resurgent American economy is posing a major problem for his Republican detractors. After years of denouncing the president’s supposed “out of control spending,” “job-crushing taxes,” and “job-killing Obamacare,” the pathetic GOP claim that Obama “made the economy worse” can’t pass the laugh test. After all, the unemployment rate has been cut in half during his tenure as the private sector added jobs for a record 70 straight months.

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Palm Beach Daly: Palm Beach to return to negotiations with fire union 

On Aug. 28, both town and union officials declared an impasse in years-long contract negotiations citing two issues: the length of the work week and retirement benefits.

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Florida Today: Kennerly: No time like now for human rights ordinances

Whether you’re a Palm Bay resident or simply care about what happens to other Brevard residents, mark Feb. 4 on your calendar.

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NBC: In Wisconsin, civil service change is another labor setback

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Gov. Scott Walker made a national name for himself among conservatives by redefining Wisconsin’s labor landscape, eliminating public unions, wiping out closed shops and erasing local prevailing wages. Now, coming off a short-lived presidential bid, he’s poised to deal state workers another blow by revamping the state’s 110-year-old civil service system.

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