Health News Florida
2:44 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Part-Time Workers With Minimal Health Coverage Get New Options

But maybe not the insurance.
Karl Dolenc iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 1:07 pm

In January, part-time workers who have so-called mini-med health insurance plans with very limited benefits and annual caps on payments will begin to lose that coverage.

Under the health care overhaul, they can't be renewed after the beginning of the year. For some, that may be just as well. Part-timers likely will have better options in January.

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Health News Florida
2:09 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

Teens Testify About ‘Cage,’ Pepper Spray

Originally published on Wed November 27, 2013 7:20 am

Teenagers who were being held at the adult Polk County Jail took the stand in a federal class-action lawsuit that asserts they were given inhumane treatment, including prolonged isolation and being pepper-sprayed while held in cages. 

As the

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Science
2:06 pm
Tue November 26, 2013

The Battle Against Citrus Greening

A greenhouse at the Citrus Research and Education Center
Credit Robin Sussingham / WUSF

Listen to the story here.

Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam calls citrus greening "as bad a situation as it could possible be for Florida signature crop." That's why the state's citrus farmers have spent more than $60 million of their own money over the last seven years to save their crops. Lake Alfred, in Polk County, is headquarters for intense research efforts to cure citrus greening.

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The Two-Way
9:41 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Big Travel Day Could Be A Big Mess Due To Weather

Tuesday's forecast for the eastern half of the U.S. shows big bands of rain, freezing rain and snow.
National Weather Service

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 8:59 am

Rain, sleet, snow and an estimated 43.4 million Americans traveling to be with family or friends.

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Politics
9:35 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Fla.'s GOP Chair Calls on Radel to Step Down

Rep. Henry "Trey" Radel, R-Fla., on Capitol Hill in Washington, in September 2013.
Credit J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press

A U.S. congressman from Florida who recently pleaded guilty to cocaine possession is focusing on rehab and will return to work, his aide said Tuesday, despite calls from the state's top Republican Party officials for him to step down.

On Monday, party chairman Lenny Curry suggested U.S. Rep. Trey Radel from Fort Mayers should resign after his recent conviction in Washington, D.C. The chairman joined a growing number of party leaders in Radel's own district and Florida's governor who are calling for his resignation.

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Health News Florida
8:11 am
Tue November 26, 2013

Judge Upholds Use of New Execution Drug

Originally published on Tue November 26, 2013 8:07 am

A Florida judge on Monday signed off on the use of a new drug the state is using in its executions. 

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Culture
4:58 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

Bro Bowl's Fate Still Unknown in Perry Harvey Sr. Park Face Lift

The graffiti-covered Bro Bowl sits in the middle of Perry Harvey Sr. Park.
Yoselis Ramos WUSF

The City of Tampa has been planning a redevelopment of Perry Harvey Sr. Park for years. In the same park sits a 35-year-old skate bowl, which recently made it on the National Register of Historic Places. Because the facelift would require federal money, the city has to plan how to take care of both the new park and figure out what to do with the Bro Bowl.

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12:12 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

County Sent Sick, Dying to Facility that Lost Assisted-Living License

Lead in text: 
Bay Gardens Retirement Village in Tampa no longer has a license to operate as an assisted living facility. As the Tampa Bay Times reports, the facility lost that license in 2010 after years of endangering and neglecting patients. But as a review of public records and interviews with former tenants by the Times shows, Hillsborough County continued to pay for people to live there, even though many of them were sick and needed more care than Bay Gardens was able or allowed to provide.
TAMPA Bay Gardens Retirement Village seemed to get worse every year. In 2005, state inspectors found filthy, reeking bathrooms, a raccoon living in the ceiling and a patient whose genitals had been bitten by ants. In 2007, they discovered a demented man, smeared in his own filth, plucking at his colostomy bag in a stinking, roach-infested room.
Education
12:05 pm
Mon November 25, 2013

What Children’s Authors Make Of Common Core And Education Policy

Miami Book Fair International brought more than four dozen children’s authors to Florida over the weekend
Credit Sammy Mack / StateImpact Florida

More than four dozen contemporary young adult and children’s authors were in Florida over the weekend for Miami Book Fair International.

As Common Core State Standards for English and language arts are putting a national spotlight on what kids read in class, many of those authors are thinking about the way literature is taught in school—and how that’s changing.

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Law & Order
11:55 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Mother of Bullied Polk Girl Plans Lawsuit; Wants Tougher Laws

Rebecca Sedwick

The mother of a Lakeland girl who committed suicide after complaining about being bullied said Monday that she will push lawmakers to pass new anti-bullying legislation because current laws don't do enough to protect children.

Tricia Norman and her attorney also said during a news conference that she plans to file wrongful death lawsuits against those she believes are responsible for her daughter's death, though she refused to identify those people specifically.

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Health News Florida
8:05 am
Mon November 25, 2013

White House Pushes Next Year's Health Plan Sign-Ups Later

Originally published on Sun November 24, 2013 6:32 pm

Another day brings another delay for the federal health law known as the Affordable Care Act.

On Friday, the Obama administration announced that, starting next year, it is pushing back the start of the sign-up period for those buying individual and small business insurance until mid-November, rather than mid-October. That will give insurance companies some extra time to set their premiums, given this year's difficulties.

And, as some analysts point out, the delay may also ease some political concerns for Democrats.

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Culture
6:00 am
Mon November 25, 2013

Bro Bowl's Fate Still Unknown in Perry Harvey Sr. Park Face Lift

The graffiti covered Bro Bowl sits in the middle of Perry Harvey Sr. Park.
Yoselis Ramos WUSF

The city of Tampa has been planning a redevelopment of Perry Harvey Sr. Park for years. In the same park sits a 35-year-old skate bowl, which recently made it on the National Register of Historic Places. Because the facelift would require federal money, the city has to plan how to take care of both the new park and figure out what to do with the Bro Bowl.

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Environment
9:34 pm
Sun November 24, 2013

Rate Of Coastal Wetlands Loss Has Sped Up, U.S. Study Says

Saltwater wetlands that include marshes and shoals on Virginia's Atlantic coast. U.S. coastal wetlands losses were 25 percent greater from 2004-2009, according to a recent federal study.
U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Originally published on Fri November 22, 2013 7:47 pm

The U.S. lost an average of 80,000 acres of coastal wetlands from 2004 to 2009, according to the latest data published by federal agencies. More than 70 percent of the estimated loss came in the Gulf of Mexico; nationwide, most of the loss was blamed on development that incurred on freshwater wetlands.

"The losses of these vital wetlands were 25 percent greater than during the previous six years," NPR's Elizabeth Shogren reports for our Newscast unit. She also notes that the loss equals "about seven football fields every hour."

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Law & Order
4:12 pm
Sat November 23, 2013

Two Workers Injured at Mosaic Plant Explosion

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue

Two workers were injured this afternoon after an explosion was reported on the Mosaic processing plant on U.S. 41 near Riverview. Hillsborough County fire officials report a hundred-foot cloud rocked the plant.

Workers were doing routine maintenance of an empty acid tank which  ruptured, causing the top to fly about 100 feet and crash down on the ground.  Two Mosaic employees sustained injuries that were non-life threatening and were transported to an area hospital. 

Law & Order
12:49 pm
Sat November 23, 2013

Miami-Area Police Force Accused Of Rampant Racial Profiling

Originally published on Sat November 23, 2013 2:25 pm

Based on witness interviews, public records and surveillance video, The Miami Herald dropped a stunning story on Friday: It alleges that for years, the Miami Gardens Police Department has racially profiled the clients and employees of a convenience store in the Miami-area city.

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