Environment
3:55 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Army Corps Wants More Time on Everglades Project Report

An internal review board at the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers wants more time to finalize a report on an Everglades restoration project with a pressing deadline.

The Corps' Civil Works Review Board met Tuesday in Washington to discuss the Central Everglades Planning Project. It concluded that "while the analysis and project plans are extremely well done," more time is needed before the project report is ready for a final 30-day review by the state and other federal agencies.

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Culture
2:17 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

In Disney's Shadow, Homeless Families Struggle

Theresa Muller prepares to move out of her motel room she shares with her boyfriend, father and three children in Kissimmee. Muller and her family have been homeless but plan to move to a home in a neighboring county.
Credit John Raoux / AP Photo

When they moved from Georgia to the theme park playground of central Florida four years ago, Anthony and Candice Johnson found work at a barbecue restaurant and a 7-Eleven. Their combined salaries nevertheless fell short of what they needed to rent an apartment, so the couple and their two children have instead been hopping among cheap motel rooms along U.S. 192.

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Health News Florida
10:15 am
Thu April 24, 2014

No Place Like Home, for Childbirth

Jamie Winn with newborn son Russell.
Mary Shedden WUSF 89.7 News

Originally published on Thu April 24, 2014 12:50 pm

 When Jamie Winn prepared to deliver, she didn't pack a bag or head to the hospital. She and husband Justin invited a midwife into their Temple Terrace home.

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Politics
8:11 am
Thu April 24, 2014

Legislative Wheeling, Dealing in Final Days

Florida's Capitol

The volume on the fourth floor outside the House and Senate chambers is reaching a crescendo. Lobbyists are jockeying for positions in front of the chamber doors as lawmakers emerge for quick pow-wows. It's all part of the last-minute frenzy as, in the words of powerful Sen. John Thrasher, "bills are dying."

Priorities of House and Senate leaders, including pensions, school vouchers and medical marijuana, are all "trade bait" as the days wind down before the session's scheduled finale on May 2.

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Culture
4:17 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Revving Up for the Bollywood Oscars in Tampa Bay

Hillsborough County Commissioner Al Higginbotham – decked out in a tuxedo – on stage at the 2013 International Indian Film Academy Awards ceremony in Macau, China.
Al Higginbotham

Hillsborough County Commissioner Al Higginbotham is an unlikely advocate for the International Indian Film Academy Awards.

He said he’s not a cinema fan and knew little of the awards nicknamed "IIFA" and the "Bollywood Oscars."

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University Beat
4:04 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

USF Grads Warned: No Selfies!

Ad posted in the USF student newspaper, The Oracle, requesting that students taking part in next week's graduation ceremonies don't take selfie photos - among other "inappropriate behaviors" - when they receive their diplomas.

If you're a University of South Florida student graduating next month and your plan is to take a selfie photo on stage, the University has one word for you: don't!

In a story that's receiving national attention, the USF Division of Student Affairs sent out a notice to all graduating seniors and placed an ad in the school newspaper, The Oracle, requesting that they don't take pictures of themselves when they receive their diplomas from President Judy Genshaft.

Also on the list of what's labeled as 'inappropriate behaviors' are stepping, strolling and marching. Just a simple handshake, pose for the official photo with the President and move on, please.

Violators may face disciplinary action, including the withholding of their degree.

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Politics
3:06 pm
Wed April 23, 2014

Fact-Checking Charlie Crist's Past

Credit politifact.com

Charlie Crist was once a Republican governor of Florida.        

He wants his old job back -- as a Democrat. 

And that means -- to make a strong case among Democratic voters -- he has some explaining to do.

But some analysts say Crist is having a tough time spinning his Republican record.

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Health News Florida
11:57 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Sarasota Memorial Health CEO Leaving

Gwen MacKenzie
Sarasota Memorial Health Care System

Originally published on Wed April 23, 2014 11:32 am

Sarasota Memorial Health Care System’s president and CEO Gwen MacKenzie is leaving at the end of May for a leadership position with the nation’s largest Catholic and nonprofit health system, according to a news release.

After spending nearly 10 years with Sarasota Memorial as president and CEO, MacKenzie will return to her home state of Michigan to work for Ascension Health. While her title was not specified in the release, it said she will have administrative and operations responsibility for Ascension's five health systems in Michigan.

Law & Order
9:32 am
Wed April 23, 2014

Supreme Court Says No To No-Fault Case

The Florida Supreme Court won't hear a challenge by acupuncturists and massage therapists who sought to overturn a 2012 law that supporters said would cut fraud from the state's no-fault auto insurance system.

Monday's decision effectively ends the case, which focused during appeals on whether unnamed plaintiffs had legal "standing" to pursue the challenge. But Adam Levine, an attorney for the challengers, has said in the past he could re-file the case with named plaintiffs.

With the decision, Insurance Commissioner Kevin McCarty said the law proceeds, "nothing changes."

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Business
1:58 pm
Tue April 22, 2014

WUSF Wins Two Regional Edward R. Murrow Awards

Edward R. would be proud

WUSF has won two regional 2014 Edward R. Murrow Awards.And they both went to…. drum roll please…. WUSF reporter Bobbie O’Brien. For Best Feature Reporting for her story on Autism Defined by Those with the Diagnosis that she did with our intern, Andrew Casey; and for best Sports Reporting for Veteran Athletes Give Super Effort in Super G.

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Culture
11:46 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Bollywood IIFA 2014 Comes To Town

Shahid Kapoor with Kareena Kapoor
Credit IBN Times

The International Indian Film Academy's biggest party is starting this week in Tampa. Otherwise known as the Bollywood Oscars, tens of thousands of fans are expected to attend IIFA events across the Bay Area.  

And famous Bollywood actors and actresses are expected to be in town. 

So to get you ready for the festivities, which start with the IIFA Stomp Wednesday night at Tampa's Curtis Hixon Park, here's a little primer on The Best of Bollywood from Time.  

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10:34 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Breaking Down the Myths and Misconceptions About the Gulf Oil Spill

Lead in text: 
A large part of the confusion was due to the connected, yet distinct, seafood issues surrounding the spill. Whether the seafood was safe for humans to eat was mixed with stories of the future of Gulf fisheries; harm done to wild fish was conflated with health of the seafood supply. To clear up some of the confusion, here are seven topics of concern, some still unresolved, about the Gulf Oil Spill, brought to you by the Smithsonian Ocean Portal and the Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative (GoMRI). These should help you better understand the spill’s effects on seafood and wildlife.
In the months and years following the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, telling fact from fiction regarding seafood safety and ecosystem health was supremely difficult. Is Gulf seafood safe to eat or not? Are there really deformed shrimp and black lesion-covered red snapper? Will the Gulf ever be clean again?
10:32 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Four Years Later, a Sharp Divide on Gulf Oil Spill

Lead in text: 
A spate of reports and press releases leading up to the anniversary of the disaster, which took place April 20, 2010, sketch a picture of a region still awash in oil and tar, with fish and wildlife struggling to survive and thousands of people suffering from both economic and physical or mental distress. Those assessments stand in stark contrast to BP's declaration last week that "active cleanup" is complete and ongoing restoration work "is helping the Gulf return to its baseline condition, which is the condition it would be in if the accident had not occurred."
The state of the Gulf of Mexico four years after the worst oil spill in U.S. history is as unclear as a marsh soaked with petrochemicals. The state of BP, on the other hand, is powerful and proud, with the British energy giant showing little tolerance for criticism over the incident.
10:23 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Laurel Wilt Fungus Poses Threat to Florida's Avocado Trees

Lead in text: 
Lethal to avocado and other tree species in the laurel family, the fungus — Raffaelea lauricola — poses a serious threat to Florida's commercial avocado industry, worth $55 million to the state economy, according to University of Florida agricultural economist Edward "Gilly" Evans. First detected in northeast Florida's Duval County in 2005, the disease moved rapidly through the state, striking Florida's commercial production area in south Miami-Dade County in March 2012.
WINTER HAVEN | Born and raised in Mexico, Sergio Cruz certainly has the pedigree for making authentic guacamole. In recent years, the Winter Haven man has coalesced recipes into a formula that routinely wins rave reviews at potlucks and family gatherings.
Environment
9:17 am
Tue April 22, 2014

Forced To Put Its Nets Away, Cedar Key Clams Up — Literally

Downtown Cedar Key
Credit Wikimedia Commons

Since Florida banned gill nets 20 years ago, University of Florida researchers have helped Cedar Key replace commercial fishing with aquaculture. The area's now among the most productive clam farming regions in the U.S.

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