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Associated Press

Joshua Doubek - Wikimedia Commons

The state House approved a bill Wednesday that would create regulations for fracking despite strong opposition from Democrats who said the oil and gas drilling practice could contaminate groundwater, damage the environment, make people sick and hurt Florida's tourism industry.

State Archives of Florida

Saying it's time to put the "death penalty" debate to rest, the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature began taking its first steps Wednesday to find a way to preserve executions in the state.

Associated Press

Florida lawmakers are moving closer to making fantasy sports legal in the state.

AP Photo

Republican Donald Trump today bowed out of the final Republican presidential debate before the leadoff Iowa caucuses, saying Fox News moderator Megyn Kelly is “a lightweight.”

With 48 hours to go before the faceoff, campaign manager Corey Lewandowski confirmed Trump’s decision this evening after a press conference in which Trump lashed out at Kelly and said she’d been “toying” with him.

“He will not be participating in the Fox News debate Thursday,” Lewandowski said immediately after the press conference.

Pool/Edmund D. Fountain / Tampa Bay Times


Florida may pay for burials of students whose remains were once on the grounds of the now shuttered Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys.

A House committee passed a bill Monday that would ban nearly all abortions in Florida, but even backers of the bill say its chances of passage, or of surviving a court challenge if it became law, likely are slim.

AP

Officials say so far, 17 Burmese pythons have been caught during the hunt for the invasive species in Florida's wetlands.

The South Florida Sun Sentinel reports the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission announced the tally Tuesday.

Amid an ongoing tug-of-war over tax cuts and spending, Florida legislators learned Tuesday that they are going to have less money to spend in the coming year than they were planning on.

Health Officials: 3 In Florida Have Zika Virus

Jan 20, 2016

The Florida Department of Health has confirmed three cases of Zika virus in Florida, including two in Miami-Dade County.

The Florida Senate is going to change its official seal one more time.

In a sign of increased harmony in the Florida Legislature, top priorities for the leaders of each house - a water bill pushed by House Speaker Steve Crisafulli and a package on education aid for the disabled pushed by Senate President Andy Gardiner - received quick final passage in the House Thursday.

Brendan Fitterer / AP Photo

The widow of a Florida man shot and killed during an argument over texting during movie previews has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the theater, its developer and one of its employees.

Nicole Oulson seeks more than $15,000 and a jury trial. According to the lawsuit filed in Pinellas-Pasco Circuit Court in Dade City, she suffered physical, psychological and economic damage.

AP

  Florida's orange crop remains unchanged from last month, but the state's grapefruit crop declined slightly.

Gov. Rick Scott kicked off the 2016 Florida legislative session Tuesday morning with his annual State of the State address. This week on Florida Matters (Tuesday, Jan. 12 at 6:30 p.m. and Sunday, Jan. 17 7:30 a.m.), we will bring you highlights of Scott’s address, along with part of the Democratic response.

AP Photo/Steve Cannon

Gov. Rick Scott gave a State of the State speech on Tuesday that was focused almost entirely on creating jobs and cutting taxes, boasting that Florida has added more than a million jobs since he took office.

The Supreme Court ruled Tuesday that Florida's system for sentencing people to death is unconstitutional because it gives too much power to judges — and not enough to juries — to decide capital sentences.

A Florida man faces child neglect charges after police say a 3-year-old girl in his care ingested synthetic marijuana.

The Legislature will begin its annual session early this year with the hopes of avoiding the chaos and dysfunction that marked the 2015 session and three special sessions that followed.

President's Obama's top health administrator visited the Sunshine State as the deadline to sign up for health insurance nears.

About 1.4 million households that got financial help for health insurance under President Barack Obama's law failed to properly account for it on their tax returns last year, putting their subsidies at risk if they want to keep coverage.

Florida Department of Corrections

Convicted killer Oscar Ray Bolin was executed late Thursday for the murder of a Pasco County woman.

Though the U.S. Supreme Court considered a last-minute appeal, the 53-year-old killer of three women was executed at Florida State Prison in Starke at 10:16 p.m. Minutes earlier, the Court rejected the final appeal of Bolin, clearing the way for his execution.

Rainbow Springs
Steve Newborn / WUSF News

A massive bill to protect Florida's springs, waterways and groundwater appears headed for passage at the start of the coming legislative session, despite objections from environmentalists who say it's been weakened by the influence of industry and agriculture interests.

They say they still hope floor amendments will close loopholes in Senate and House companion bills SB 552 and HB 7005, and are trying to pressure legislators.

A Florida radiologist and his wife are facing child abuse charges after authorities say they routinely tied up a 12-year-old girl who lived at their home and confined her to a playhouse.

Bob Leverone / AP Photo

Jameis Winston had a strong rookie season, and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers tripled their victory total from the previous year. Still, it wasn't enough to save coach Lovie Smith's job.

Smith was fired Wednesday night after going 6-10 this season, 8-24 overall in two years running a team that has missed the playoffs eight consecutive years.

A Florida woman has been charged in the death of a 6-year-old boy who authorities say died after he was pinned against a couch on Christmas Eve.

Oscar Ray Bolin was first found guilty of murdering three women nearly 30 years ago. In the decades since, every one of the verdicts delivered by juries in three separate trials was reversed at least twice by appeals courts, although ultimately he was convicted again in each case: 10 times by 10 juries, to be exact.

Kevin McCarty, who helped guide Florida's fragile insurance market in the wake of eight hurricanes a decade ago, announced Tuesday that he is resigning as the state's insurance commissioner.

Florida has a backlog of more than 13,000 rape kits that have not been tested or submitted for processing, and managing them could cost the state tens of millions of dollars and take several years, according to a report released Monday.

With same-sex marriage now legal nationwide, lawmakers in numerous states are preparing for a new round of battles in 2016 over whether to grant discrimination protections to LGBT people or religious exemptions to nonprofits and businesses that object to gay marriage.

The Florida Highway Patrol says five people are dead and two others are injured following an early morning wrong-way crash on Interstate 95 near Miami.

The crash happened around 1 a.m. Wednesday in a northbound I-95 express lane.

Trooper Joe Sanchez tells local news outlets that a woman in a pickup truck was traveling southbound in the express lane. Her truck sideswiped one vehicle and hit another head-on. Four adults in a sedan were killed in the crash. The pickup driver also died.

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