News & Public Affairs


Bill for 24 hour waiting period for abortions passes Florida Legislature, heads to Gov.Scott's desk

04/29/15 Rob Lorei
MidPoint with WMNF News Wednesday
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Tags: Kellie Dupree, abortion, Planned Parenthood, Florida Legislature, Women's rights, wmnf, Rob Lorei


We talk to Kellie Dupree, Vice President of Public Policy & Communications for Planned Parenthood of Southwest and Central Florida, on the bill that would require women to wait 24 hours after consultation to get an abortion. The bill passed the house and senate with mostly republican support and democrat opposition. Along the way the bill was amended to exempt cases of rape, incest, human trafficking and domestic abuse.

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New Port Richey state rep sounds off on the Florida House early session closure

04/29/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Wednesday)
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Tags: Florida Legislature, Florida House of Representatives, Medicaid expansion, coverage gap, Amanda Murphy, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Today we talk about the surprising adjournment of the Florida House yesterday,3 days before the end of the legislative session and without reaching an agreement with the senate on the state budget. The point of contention is the expansion of Medicaid to provide coverage to more than 800,000 working poor Floridians, as federal money for hospitals to treat them runs out. Bills on tax cuts, prison reform, and medical marijuana died in the house due to the sudden closure. State Representative Ama...

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FDEP head wants to allow commercial use on State Park land,and details on the Trans-Pacific Partnership

04/28/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Tuesday)
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Tags: Florida Department of Environmental Protection, state parks, Craig Pittman, Tampa Bay Times, FDEP, Jon Steverson, Myakka River State Park, Trans Pacific Partnership, Ben Beachy, Public Citizen, trade agreement, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Today we look at plans by the head of the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to open up state parks for commercial use. A story from Craig Pittman for the Tampa Bay Times this weekend says FDEP secretary Jon Steverson aims to make the parks completely financially self-sustaining. Currently revenue from the parks cover about 77 percent of their operating costs...

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Preview of May Day labor and immigration rally in Tampa listen

04/27/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Monday
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Tags: May Day, immigration, immigrant rights, labor, workers, Labor Day, Raices en Tampa, Marisol Marquez, SDS, Tampa, Ybor City


Friday is May First – Celebrated around the world as May Day, International Workers Day or Labor Day; on MidPoint we spoke about a May Day celebration in Tampa and about labor rights and immigration rights.

Guests were Marisol Marquez and Gague Lacharite, with Raices en Tampa and Tampa Bay SDS.

We talked about the history of May Day, and about a disturbing response to the event on Facebook by a right-wing group called ROF.

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Urban Activist Peter Kageyama on successful cities and the people who love them listen

04/27/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Monday)
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Tags: Peter kageyama, urbanism, city planning, For the Love of Cities, St.Petersburg, Tampa, Museum of Fine Art, Florida This Week, Medicaid, Florida Legislature, Jim Davis, Rick Baker, Susan Macmanus, Adam Smith


Today we have Peter Kageyama, urban activist and author of For the Love of Cities, to discuss what it takes to make a livable and emotionally engaging city. We look at several factors that have contributed in making St.Petersburg such a desirable place to live over the past decade, and if sister city Tampa can recreate the same vibrancy in its urban core. Kageyama will be a keynote speaker for a conversation called "For the Love of St.Pete", hosted by St. Petersburg Sunset Rotary Foundation a...

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Pier Selection Committee chooses Pier Park for new St. Pete icon listen

04/24/15 Janelle Irwin
MidPoint with WMNF News Friday
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Tags: pier, St. Pete, St. Pete City Council, Janelle Irwin

Last night, the Pier Selection Committee approved the design known as Pier Park as its top-ranked team. That design was number two in the city’s public survey. Destination, the public’s top ranked team and the only design that would have renovated the current inverted pyramid, was ranked number two by the selection committee.

The issue has been a contentious one. Following a ballot referendum in 2013 in which voters overwhelmingly rejected the previous chosen design called the Lens, the ci...

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Margaret Lowman, leading tree-top biologist, talks about her work and effect of climate change on Florida trees.

04/24/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Friday)
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Tags: trees, Margaret Lowman, Canopy meg, tree-top ecology, canopy walkways, Myakka River State Park, ecology, Sylvia Earle, Tampa Theatre, Susan Giles, WUSF, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Today we have an interview with Margaret ‘Canopy Meg’ Lowman, a globe-trotting conservationist and pioneer in 'tree-top ecology' which utilizes hot air balloons and forest canopy walkways to study the environment of trees. She started the TREE foundation, which helped build the canopy walkways in Myakka River State Park near Sarasota. Lowman is Chief of Science & Sustainability at the California Academy of Sciences. Fullbright Scholar and recipient of numerous academic and scientific awards....

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USF cancels plans for body farm in Lithia

04/24/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Friday
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Tags: USF, Tampa, Lithia, Hillsborough County, Hillsborough Sheriff

The University of South Florida is no longer considering locating a proposed body farm in Lithia; in a press release Friday afternoon, USF said after a community meeting Thursday night in Lithia many residents objected to what is being called the Facility for Outdoor Experimental Research and Training. The press release says the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office still wants to find a location for a facility to study how bodies decompose when left in the Florida elements.

*here is the te...

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Three Americans and one Italian killed by U.S. counterterror actions listen

04/23/15 Seán Kinane
MidPoint with WMNF News Thursday
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Tags: drones, Barack Obama, War, Pakistan, Afghanistan


The White House announced Thursday that three Americans and an Italian were killed in U.S. counterterrorism actions in the border region of Afghanistan and Pakistan; in a brief statement President Barack Obama says he takes "full responsibility" for one operation that he says inadvertently killed an American hostage, Warren Weinstein, and an Italian hostage, Giovanni Lo Porto, held by al-Qaida.

The president did not take questions.

A [statement from White House Press Secretary Josh Earn...

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An interview with family of Tampa man killed in police raid over two dollars worth of pot listen

04/23/15 Rob Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday)
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Tags: Jason Westcott, Tampa Police, marijuana, Patti Sillman, Israel Reyes, wmnf, Rob Lorei


Today Host Rob Lorei interviews the family of Jason Westcott, a 29-year-old man that was shot and killed during a police raid of his home in Tampa last year. He was previously advised by the same police department to arm himself against a potential intruder after uncovering a potential plot to rob his home. The Tampa Police were led to Westcott by an informant that claim...

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