Make us your home page
Instagram

Florida Legislature

  1. As state budget talks wind down, which local projects are making the cut?

    News

    TALLAHASSEE —With the big ticket items in the state budget resolved or in the hands of the top leaders in the House and Senate, the rest of the Florida Legislature hunkered down into marathon negotiations over the weekend to dole out hundreds of millions of dollars for local projects back home.

  2. After outcry, lawmakers scrap plans to fully slash funding for 'Moonlight' alumni's school

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Lawmakers in Tallahassee are largely reversing course on plans to cut $650,000 in state grant funding to the Miami arts school whose alumni helped create the Oscar-winning film Moonlight and the Broadway hit "Hamilton."

  3. Florida House marijuana bill moves closer to Senate version

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — State lawmakers are inching closer to an agreement on medical marijuana after more than 70 percent of voters declared they wanted to allow patients with debilitating conditions to use the drug.

  4. Meet the descendant of a Confederate soldier who is blocking Florida's first slavery memorial

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — A proposal to create the first slavery memorial in Florida unanimously passed the state House on Friday with roaring applause — but its prospects in the Senate are uncertain after one committee chairman stalled the legislation over a "philosophical objection" to the concept.

  5. Lawmakers set to defund Miami school that educated makers of 'Moonlight' and 'Hamilton'

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida lawmakers are on the brink of cutting $650,000 in state grant funding to the Miami arts school whose alumni helped create the Oscar-winning film "Moonlight" and the Broadway hit "Hamilton."

  1. So much for 'unprecedented openness' as Corcoran, Negron cut budget deal in secret

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — After promising unprecedented openness, House Speaker Richard Corcoran has spent long days and nights negotiating an elaborate budget deal in secret with Senate counterpart Joe Negron, keeping most other lawmakers and the public in the dark.

  2. As budget talks crash, Corcoran wants 'continuation' budget, no new spending

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — A bitter stalemate over spending forced the Legislature to suspend work on a budget Monday, stirring more bad blood among Republicans and putting an on-time adjournment in doubt.

  3. Controversy over Miami lawmaker's racial slur engulfs Florida Legislature

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Controversy raged in the Florida Capitol for a second day over Sen. Frank Artiles' racist and sexist tirade, distracting and slowing down the Legislature on Thursday, just two weeks before the end of the annual lawmaking session and building pressure on the Miami Republican to resign — or risk …

  4. Large counties push back on House's proposed $200M charter school incentive

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Administrators at some of Florida's largest school districts are speaking out in opposition to House Republicans' $200 million "schools of hope" plan that would pit new, specialized charter schools against the districts' perpetually failing traditional public schools.

  5. Legislature vows transparency on negotiating education policy. History says otherwise.

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE Florida lawmakers last week set into motion a budget process that will result in several highly consequential policy reforms affecting public education to become law this year in one form or another.

  1. In GOP-dominated Legislature, black lawmakers caucus struggles

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — When the last cocktail had been poured and the last guests had floated away from the Florida Conference of Black State Legislators' annual Scholarship Gala last month, thousands of dollars had flowed into the nonprofit foundation, courtesy of five-figure checks from a variety of special interests …

    As Rep. Bobby Powell, D-Riviera Beach, left, looks on, the chairman of the Florida Legislative Black Caucus, Rep. Alan Williams, D-Tallahassee, is interviewed at the Florida Conference of Black State Legislators’ 21st annual Scholarship Gala in Tallahassee.
  2. Watchdog report says power companies wield too much influence in Florida Legislature

    Energy

    TALLAHASSEE — To understand the influence of Florida's largest electric companies in Tallahassee, look no further than your monthly bill.

  3. Big money, powerful lobbying groups push Florida voucher proposal

    K12

    TALLAHASSEE — Nearly 200 schoolchildren greeted Senate President Don Gaetz last month when he visited a Catholic school in Pensacola to get a firsthand look at the impact of Florida's controversial school voucher program.

  4. Capitol's dash for cash: Florida lawmakers race against time, picking up checks

    Elections

    TALLAHASSEE — The race for campaign cash shifted into high gear Monday as dozens of state legislators sought contributions from lobbyists before today's start of the legislative session when such fundraising is banned for two months.

    Rep. Darryl Rouson, D-St. Petersburg, receives a campaign contribution from veteran lobbyist Paul Jess of the Florida Justice Association, at a fundraiser Monday in Tallahassee, the last day he could raise funds before the 2014 session begins.
  5. Times/Herald special report: Tallahassee's torrent of campaign contributions

    Elections

    TALLAHASSEE — When Florida legislators open their annual 60-day session on Tuesday, many of the decisions about what issues make it onto the agenda have already been made — thanks in large part to the powerful special interest groups and a torrent of cash flowing into the coffers of legislative political …

  1. After outcry, lawmakers scrap plans to fully slash funding for 'Moonlight' alumni's school

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Lawmakers in Tallahassee are largely reversing course on plans to cut $650,000 in state grant funding to the Miami arts school whose alumni helped create the Oscar-winning film Moonlight and the Broadway hit "Hamilton."

  2. Lawmakers set to defund Miami school that educated makers of 'Moonlight' and 'Hamilton'

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida lawmakers are on the brink of cutting $650,000 in state grant funding to the Miami arts school whose alumni helped create the Oscar-winning film "Moonlight" and the Broadway hit "Hamilton."

  3. This tax cut would cost Florida's local governments $644 million. And it just advanced in the Senate.

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — An election-year tax break for Florida home­owners that cities and counties say would hurt basic services emerged Friday as the key to a budget deal in the Legislature.

  4. For once, Florida Democrats have possible votes to block key Republican initiative

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — As a sign of "increasing weight" in the legislative process, Senate Democrats have enough votes to block a key priority of House Speaker Richard Corcoran, who wants to increase the property tax exemption for homeowners.

  5. So much for 'unprecedented openness' as Corcoran, Negron cut budget deal in secret

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — After promising unprecedented openness, House Speaker Richard Corcoran has spent long days and nights negotiating an elaborate budget deal in secret with Senate counterpart Joe Negron, keeping most other lawmakers and the public in the dark.

  1. After Medicaid blowup, House moves forward with its own free-market health care ideas

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — After knocking down a plan to expand Medicaid last summer, the Florida House is now pushing its own ideas for health care reform.

  2. Ideas emerge to bridge Florida's legislative divide

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Florida legislators may have ended their stalemate last week when they agreed to convene a three-week special session to resolve the budget crisis in June, but they didn't agree on the hard part: how to resolve stark differences over health care.

  3. Florida Gov. Rick Scott asks hospitals to consider profit sharing

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott is pitching a new idea to help Florida hospitals handle the potential loss of federal funds for treating indigent patients: profit sharing.

    Gov. Rick Scott unveiled an ambitious environmental plan that promises to spend $5 billion over the next 20 years. [Getty Images]
  4. Meet the Arizona doctor House Republicans like to quote

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Dr. Jason Fodeman may not be a household name in Florida.

  5. Gov. Rick Scott calls for special session, says tax cuts may be sacrificed to end stalemate

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Blaming the federal government for Florida's financial woes, Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday said he was prepared to call Florida lawmakers back for a special session to complete the budget — and even encourage them to pass a bare-bones budget if necessary.

    Gov. Scott says his tax cuts are in jeopardy.
  1. Five budget fights to watch as Scott, lawmakers collide on spending $83.5 billion

    Legislature

    By STEVE BOUSQUET

    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott and the Legislature have battled repeatedly over jobs and tourism spending for weeks, but a fight with much higher stakes is brewing.

    The state budget.

  2. Bill that attempts to freeze gambling in Florida advances in House

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — A bill that attempts to lock Florida's gambling footprint in place for 20 years — and ice out any casino expansion — passed a key House committee along a party line vote Tuesday leaving the Legislature miles apart over how to resolve the lucrative gambling compact with the Seminole …

  3. Rules conflict snags opening of Constitution review commission

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — The state panel assigned to review the state Constitution got off to a rocky start Monday as the 37-member commission met for an organizational session in the Florida Senate chambers but delayed adopting rules after several members privately raised questions about whether the proposals diluted the …

  4. Fact-checking Tallahassee: See what lobbyists, lawmakers got wrong, and right, during a week of session

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — PolitiFact Florida reporters attended committee hearings, peered in on floor debates and hoofed it to rallies and news conferences during a week of fact-checking lawmakers and lobbyists at the state Capitol.

  5. Senate passes 'stand your ground' law changes to benefit defendants

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — This could be the year the Republican-led Florida Legislature succeeds in enacting a controversial change to the state's "stand your ground" law that prosecutors warn could lead to a flood of self-defense claims and would force state attorneys to essentially try cases twice.

  6. A parade of pork: Florida lawmakers seek $2.6 billion in hometown spending

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE

    After years of secretly stashing money into budgets with little public scrutiny, state lawmakers are being forced to defend their requests for hometown projects in broad daylight.

  7. PolitiFact Florida: Rick Scott was right about Florida's unique tax on business leases

    Legislature

    Gov. Rick Scott kicked off the legislative session by touting an economic agenda chock-full of tax cuts to benefit businesses.

  8. $3.3 billion for state water projects advances in Senate despite concerns

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — A Senate plan to bond $1.2 billion in state funds to build a water-storage reservoir south of Lake Okeechobee grew to become a $3.3 billion bonding program that would fund dozens of water projects around the state — from sewage treatment in Tampa Bay to wastewater treatment in the Florida …

  9. Here's how Richard Corcoran stormed Florida's capital and made some people angry

    State Roundup

    LAND O'LAKES — Richard Corcoran puffed on his cigar, picked up a shotgun and blasted a clay pigeon out of the sky, and then another.

  10. Gov. Scott once took aim at mosquito districts as 'tax burden'

    Blogs

    The full story is here.

  1. As budget talks crash, Corcoran wants 'continuation' budget, no new spending

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — A bitter stalemate over spending forced the Legislature to suspend work on a budget Monday, stirring more bad blood among Republicans and putting an on-time adjournment in doubt.

  2. Controversy over Miami lawmaker's racial slur engulfs Florida Legislature

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Controversy raged in the Florida Capitol for a second day over Sen. Frank Artiles' racist and sexist tirade, distracting and slowing down the Legislature on Thursday, just two weeks before the end of the annual lawmaking session and building pressure on the Miami Republican to resign — or risk …

  3. Miami lawmaker's leadership and 'gun-bill fatigue' disarm Legislature

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — When Anitere Flores declared, unprompted, a month ago there were a lot of controversial gun-rights measures she wouldn't support this year, the Miami Republican state senator truly set the tone for the Legislature's gun debate in 2017.

  4. Hospitals, higher ed, hometown spending divide lawmakers as budget battle intensifies

    Legislature

    TALLAHASSEE — Hospitals, higher education and hometown spending are all focal points of disagreement after Senate and House panels approved rival state budgets Wednesday.

  5. Changes to Florida's 'stand your ground' law on track to pass

    News

    TALLAHASSEE — Criminal defendants in Florida who are charged with a wide array of violent acts — including murder, assault and domestic violence — could soon have an easier go at claiming they were justified to act in self-defense, legally stood their ground and don't deserve to be prosecuted.