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The Florida House has voted to tear down the so-called liquor wall by a razor-thin margin. It’s a rare issue that doesn’t fall along party lines, giving a brief glimpse into lawmakers’ individual beliefs.

Florida lawmakers are beginning to make headway when it comes to finding a middle ground between the House and Senate gambling plans.

House Committee Advances Redistricting Bill

Apr 25, 2017

The House Judiciary committee is advancing a bill regarding redistricting. It adds restrictions on voting districts and when people can challenge them.

A bill making it easier for certain people to get their mugshots removed and records sealed has already passed the Florida Senate. And, after recently passing its last committee in the House, it’s now headed to the floor.

A measure aimed at making it easier for cellular companies to add hardware to telephone poles is heading to the house floor.  Supporters say the move is necessary to meet growing demands on bandwidth, but opponents call it an industry handout.

A bill that looks to "un-muddy" the mission of Florida's main environmental land acquisition program could potentially affect the plan for an Everglades reservoir.

Steve Newborn / WUSF News

Will he or won't he? Attorney John Morgan said little Friday to answer that question about whether he'll run for governor.

During an appearance at the Tampa Tiger Bay Club, Morgan was at times profane, funny and well-opinionated. The Orlando attorney has become ubiquitous not only for his ads blanketing billboards and buses, but his efforts to get an amendment passed that would allow the use of medical marijuana in the state. That experience, he said, gave him a taste of what running for governor would be like.

The Florida Channel

A Florida state senator who used a racial slur and vulgar language in a conversation with two African-American colleagues resigned Friday, saying the incident is causing a distraction to the legislative process.

Republican Sen. Frank Artiles submitted a resignation letter to Republican Senate President Joe Negron and issued a separate statement.

Flickr

The swirl of controversy after the decision by Orange County State Attorney Aramis Ayala not to apply the death penalty in cases assigned to her has filtered down to a discussion of cases on Florida's death row.

No, election season is not over for Democrats. In fact, judging by the crowds and the speeches at the James L. Knight Center in Miami on Wednesday night, you would think it's in full swing. 

More than 2,000 people showed up to hear Vermont senator and former presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, along with chair of the National Democratic Committee Tom Perez, at the latest stop of their "Come Together and Fight Back" tour,  aimed at building activism within the Democratic party. 

myfloridahouse.gov

A Florida state senator who used racial slurs and obscene insults during an after-hours conversation with other lawmakers is being stripped of his chairmanship.

Florida Governor Rick Scott is now calling for $100 million dollars in tourism money—almost 25 percent more than he outlined in his spending plan early this year.  

A panel of Florida lawmakers began a discussion this week to consider automatically restoring the civil rights of ex-felons who committed nonviolent crimes.

Amid calls for his resignation, Sen. Frank Artiles, R-Miami, apologized publicly  Wednesday morning for a tirade at a club that included making derogatory comments about a fellow senator and using a racial slur. 

“I extend a heartfelt apology to my colleagues and to all those I have offended,” said Artiles from the Senate floor. 

Florida Sen. Jack Latvala says he’s not ready to give up politics after he’s term limited in the Senate next year. But he won’t say what he’s eyeing next. Latvala spoke at the Tiger Bay Club in Tallahassee.

Tallahassee City Commissioner Gil Ziffer says although a proposed increase in the homestead tax break would keep money in the pockets of homeowners, the move could hurt local governments. 

While a raft of immigration legislation is moving through the Florida House, similar proposals in the Senate appear to be on the back burner.

Florida lawmakers are considering an update to the Stand Your Ground law. The state wants to make clear that residents won’t have to wait to be attacked in their homes before using deadly force. That has gun control advocates worried.

The Florida Cabinet is saying farewell to Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, who is resigning his post early next month to work as the new Vice President of strategic initiatives and CFO for Florida Atlantic University.

Less than two weeks after the House proposal was unveiled, The Florida House is expected Wednesday to take up a controversial pension reform package.

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