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Florida Supreme Court hears arguments on redistricting listen

05/09/13 AP
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Florida Supreme Court justices are weighing whether to end a lengthy legal battle over new political districts.

Thursday lawyers for the Republican-led Legislature asked the high court to throw out a lawsuit that says legislators violated strict new standards when they drew up new districts for the state Senate. The maps were adopted last year.

Raoul Cantero, a former Supreme Court justice hired by the Senate, contends that the Supreme Court has already upheld the map once and that the ...

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Tampa activists ask State Rep. why he voted for foreclosure bill listen

03/01/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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A bill in the state legislature that would speed up the foreclosure process cleared the House floor yesterday and a group of about 20 Tampa Bay area residents aren’t happy about it. They protested the vote at Representative Shawn Harrison’s office in Temple Terrace. Harrison was one of 94 ...

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Senator Paula Dockery wants "citizen's veto" bill listen

01/06/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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A bill is being introduced to the Florida legislature that would give citizens the power to veto certain laws. It’s sponsored by Representative Richard Steinberg, a Miami Democrat and a Republican Senator from Lakeland, Paula Dockery.

The measure will be discussed during the upcoming legislative session which starts on Tuesday. If lawmakers pass the so-called citizens veto bill, it would appear on the ballot for voters in November as a constitutional amendment. A 60-percent vote would...

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McManus on Dockery's possible entry into the governor's race listen

05/26/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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The St. Petersburg Times reported today that Lakeland Rep. Paula Dockery is considering a run for the Republican nomination for governor next year.

In a press release, Dockery says that her future intentions have been on running for the District 12 Congressional seat that is open with Adam Putnam stepping down to run for Agriculture Commissioner.

But she writes, “I have been surprised and flattered by numerous e-mails, phone calls and letters encouraging me to run. It's become very ap...

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Rep. Keith Fitzgerald on Legislature's lack of action listen

05/08/09 Arielle Stevenson
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Last year, Gov. Charlie Crist bucked party lines by endorsing clean energy at the the Global Summit for Climate Change, promising to invest in renewable technologies and reduce carbon emissions.

As lawmakers in the Tallahassee wrap up another legislative session today it looks like Florida has made little progress toward greener fuels.

Democratic State representative Keith Fitzgerald of Sarasota spoke with WMNF earlier this week about the state’s clean energy portfolio. Fitzgerald sa...

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King sways some Democrats on budget vote listen

05/08/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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The Florida Senate voted 32-8 for the $66.5 billion budget today, but not all of the Democrats voted against it, as they vowed last night as a protest.

Jacksonville Republican Jim King tried to shame some of them today against voting against the budget, discussing the bipartisan nature of the Senate in passionate terms.

Miami Dade County Democrat Fredericka Wilson bitterly accused Senate leaders of capitulating to the more conservative House in crafting the final budget.

J.D. Alexand...

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State university tuition increase going to Governor Crist's desk listen

04/29/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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A bill designed to eventually raise tuition at Florida's public universities to the national average is going to Gov. Charlie Crist. Crist supports the legislation that received final passage today in the House.

Democrat Marty Kiar was one of the relatively few in either state body against the bill.

Florida's tuition now ranks at or near the bottom nationally. It’s numbers like that prompted St. Petersburg Democrat Bill Heller to support the bill.

The bill would give each of th...

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Florida to forfeit $444M in unemployment stimulus money listen

04/28/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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With just days before the legislative session ends, it is becoming likely the state of Florida will reject $444 million dollars in federal stimulus aid.

GOP lawmakers say they do not want to increase the burden on the state’s unemployment trust fund when its running out of money.

Gov. Charlie Crist has said he supports a law to draw the extra federal money, but a bill sponsored by Jacksonville Sen. Tony Hill that would do so appears to be all but dead in the Legislature.

This morni...

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Florida House debates controversial offshore drilling bill listen

04/24/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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A proposal that would lift the state ban on offshore oil drilling was debated before the entire House of Representatives in Tallahassee this afternoon.

The issue of offshore drilling has always been contentious in Florida – it was suddenly brought up for discussion late last week, without any warning.

The Miami Herald reported this week that the shift in policy was being aggressively pushed by Associated Industries of Florida, whose members include oil companies that the group refuses...

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ACLU willing to sue if election bill passes listen

04/24/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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In Tallahassee today, the House of Representatives debated a scaled down Elections Reform bill today that had received harsh criticism from activists and even Gov. Charlie Crist.

The new version removes a provision to eliminate as acceptable two forms of ID used mainly by older voters; requirements that paid petition circulators must register with the state; a requirement that voters who change their address close to an election must cast provisional ballots; and rules that would have made...

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