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Bid to halt financing for state elections gains momentum listen

03/26/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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A bid to end public financing of elections for high offices in Florida gained momentum Tuesday when the House Policy and Budget Council vote along party lines to eliminate public financing for governor and other cabinet offices.

The legislation comes in the form of a proposed constitutional amendment passed in 1998 that would repeal the provision by guaranteeing a public match for qualified candidates.

The bill is being sponsored in the House by Republican Alan Hays.

To qualify for a...

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Florida Senate apologizes for slavery listen

03/26/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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The Florida Senate has formally apologized for its long support of slavery in a resolution calling for reconciliation.

Senators this morning quickly approved the resolution after hearing some of the history detailing the savage treatment endured by slaves in the 19th century and the reluctance of politicians in the last century to recognize the intolerance and mistreatment of blacks.

Gov. Charlie Crist called it significant that the Senate formally apologized for its long support of sla...

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Activists: Tropicana contamination lingers listen

03/26/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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This afternoon at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, citizens who oppose a new waterfront baseball stadium held a press briefing to discuss possible environmental contamination at the site of the existing domed stadium.

Neil Allen is a Realtor and represents Preserve Our Wallets and Waterfront (POWW). He showed WMNF one of the monitoring well caps in the parking lot to the east of the stadium and Booker Creek, which runs along the stadium. There's recent evidence of continued environmenta...

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Floridians die each day due to lack of health care listen

03/26/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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According to a health care advocacy group, more than six working age Floridians die each day due to lack of health insurance.

That sobering statistic, and several others were mentioned today during a conference call highlighting a new report by the Washington-based organization Families USA that documents how the lack of health insurance is literally killing Floridians.

Ron Pollock, executive director of Families USA, listed some of the obvious negative affects suffered by those who lac...

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Part 1 of annual tax call-in program

03/25/08 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Tuesday)
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Today we presented the first of two call-in programs this week devoted to offering advice on filling out federal income tax forms. Our guests were CPA's Phil Scheidt, Lee Hewitt and Malcolm Hayes.

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Charlie Rose on security after 9/11 listen

03/25/08 Mark Anderson
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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The Hillsborough County League of Women Voter’s held a forum today to discuss the ongoing controversy surrounding the reduction of terror threats at the cost of diminished personal freedom.

Professor Charlie Rose of Stetson University, a law professor and former Judge Advocate General in the service gave his views on the current situation.

In post 9/11 America, there was a widely accepted view that terrorism threats needed to be reduced at all costs, including the cost of reduced huma...

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Controversial pastor cancels Tampa appearance listen

03/25/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Barack Obama’s former pastor, Jeremiah Wright, has canceled what would have been his first public appearance since a furor erupted two weeks ago over inflammatory remarks made in his sermons.

The Rev. Wright was scheduled to deliver a sermon at the Bible-Based Fellowship Church of Temple Terrace tonight as part of 3 days of revival meetings celebrating the church’s 10th anniversary.

The Rev. Earl B. Mason Sr., senior pastor at the Bible-Based Fellowship Church of Temple Terrace, says it...

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Mario Cuomo and Bob Dole speak in Sarasota listen

03/25/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Former Republican presidential candidate and Sen. Bob Dole and former New York Gov. Mario Cuomo spoke in Sarasota this morning as part of the Ringling College Library Association’s Town Hall 2008 lecture series. Before they addressed the 1,700 people who filled the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall, WMNF spoke with Dole and Cuomo.

Cuomo said he was staying neutral in the Democratic race for president by not endorsing either candidate. He referenced a poll saying nearly 30 percent of each cand...

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Health care survey says high costs hurting insured listen

03/25/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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In a new survey on health care in America, 95 percent of respondents say America’s health care system needs fundamental change or should be completely rebuilt.

The survey, sponsored by the AFL-CIO, consists of interviews with more than 26,000 people who were questioned from January through earlier this month.

The statistics in the new report are troubling. Although it is well known that 47 million Americans do not have any type of health care, the survey says that of those that do, 61 ...

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Sustainable Living: Bicycling

03/24/08 Jon Butts and Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Friday)
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Guests were Julie Bond, senior research associate at the Center for Urban Transportation Research, University of South Florida and co-chair of Tampa BayCycle; Tina Russo, senior park manager, UTB Trail/Suncoast Trail/Town and Country Greenway Trail for Hillsborough County Parks, Recreation and Conservation Department; and Alan Snel, founder of the Seminole Heights Bicycle Club.

They discussed upcoming bicycle related activities, cycling courses, new urban bike lanes and took calls and emai...

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Declining demand for teachers in state’s schools? listen

03/24/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Because of state budget cuts and declining student enrollment, some of the largest school districts in Florida are expected to hire fewer teachers this fall than they have in the recent past. This follows years of increased recruitment due to a chronic shortage of teachers in the state.

Andrea Zahn is director of communications for Pinellas County Schools. She says the county expects to hire about 100-200 fewer teachers this fall. Student enrollment is projected to be lower next year in P...

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Tampa car dealer won't face charges listen

03/24/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Over the weekend, the Tampa Tribune reported that the Hillsborough County State Attorney’s office will not file charges against Tampa car dealer Jason Kuhn even though the Florida Department of law enforcement discovered that employees were asked by Kuhn to donate to Tampa City Council candidate Julie Brown in 2006 and 2007.

Brown was defeated last year by Councilman John Dingfelder, in a race that saw both candidates spend nearly $150,000 each on the local race.

The FDLE learned tha...

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Scionti on CSX rail line and immunity – Part 2 listen

03/24/08 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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On Thursday, a state House panel gave its first approval to the $491 million purchase of rail lines from the freight company CSX for a 61-mile commuter rail line through Orlando and other sections of Central Florida. Before the approval, the House infrastructure committee approved an amendment that will make the state pay for damages or injuries on the commuter rail even if CSX is at fault.

On Friday, WMNF’s Seán Kinane spoke with Rep. Mike Scionti, D-Tampa, one of only two members of the...

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Media critic's take on Obama controversy listen

03/24/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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For more than a week, national cable and broadcast news outlets played video snippets of remarks by Barack Obama’s pastor, the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, leading to a drop of support for Obama in some national and regional polls.

Eric Deggans, the media critic for the St. Petersburg Times, writes on his blog that after observing longer video passages of some of Wright’s speeches, reporters are absolutely not giving full context to this story.

Deggans acknowledges that the imagery of an an...

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Terri Schiavo revisited in new memoir listen

03/24/08 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Newsweek magazine contributing editor Eleanor Clift has been covering Washington politics for decades.

Her new book features reporting with a touching memoir about the last few weeks in the life of her husband, Tom Brazitas, a political reporter for the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Brazitas passed away from kidney cancer in March of 2005, at the same time that Terri Schiavo was living her last few days in a Pinellas Park hospice.

Clift combines the two stories in her new book, *Two W...

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