The Scoop: WMNF’s daily digest of news headlines for Thursday, March 30th, 2023

WMNF Daily news digest, called "The Scoop"

Permitless carry in Florida

The Florida Senate will deliver a final vote today on permitless carry, a controversial bill allowing Floridians to possess a concealed weapon in public without a license – or training. The bill also expands Florida’s school guardian program into private schools, allowing trained personnel, such as teachers or security officers, to carry a firearm on campus. Bill sponsor, Tampa Republican Sen. Jay Collins cited the recent school shooting in Nashville as all the more reason to move forward with the legislation.

6-week abortion bill

Florida’s controversial 6-week abortion bill will be voted on by the full Senate today. Part of the bill provides massive support to non-medical anti-abortion clinics.

Affordable housing bill

Gov. Ron DeSantis signed an affordable housing bill into law Wednesday that developers are cheering but critics argue doesn’t go nearly far enough to help struggling Floridians pay rent or buy houses. As the Orlando Sentinel reports, SB 102, dubbed the ‘Live Local Act’ redirects some $711 million dollars in tax revenue toward affordable housing over the next 10 years and creates incentives for developers to build more affordable housing units. But it also strips local governments of control over projects that are dubbed ‘affordable’ and outlaws local rent-control ordinances.

Orlando Democratic State Rep. Anna Eskamani applauds the additional funding but says the measure does nothing for renters. She ultimately voted against the bill primarily because it curtails local control. According to the National Low Income Housing Coalition, Florida is short more than 440,000 affordable housing units.

Land development regulations

A state Senate committee considered a bill on Wednesday that would prevent referendums on amendments to local land-development regulations.

Guns in schools

One day after a school shooting in Nashville killed six people, including three children, the Polk County school district saw its sixth arrest for gun possession on campus this school year. The Lakeland Ledger reports, the latest arrest came Tuesday morning at Haines City High School, when school resource officers received a tip about a handgun in a student’s vehicle. Officers confronted the 17-year-old male, at his vehicle and recovered a 9mm Taurus semiautomatic handgun. He was arrested for possession of a firearm on a school campus and unlawful carry by a person younger than 18. Tuesday’s arrest marks the sixth incident this academic year, with more than two months left before the summer break. The Florida House recently advanced a bill to lower the legal age to purchase a firearm from 21 to 18.

New Disney contract

Thousands of Disney workers represented by the Services Trades Council Union voted to approve a new contract with the company. Under the agreement, workers currently earning 15 dollars an hour will receive a 3 dollar/hr raise by December. UNITE HERE! Local 362 President Eric Clinton says the news comes at a trying time for staff members who have been notified of companywide layoffs. Disney began the first round of layoffs this week, as part of what they call a “strategic realignment”. By the end of the summer, some 7,000 people are expected to have lost their jobs.


Information from the Florida Public Radio network, News Service of Florida and Associated Press was used in this report.

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