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Lynn Hatter

Lynn Hatter is a  Florida A&M University graduate with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. Lynn has served as reporter/producer for WFSU since 2007 with education and health care issues as her key coverage areas.  She is an award-winning member of the Capital Press Corps and has participated in the NPR Kaiser Health News Reporting Partnership and NPR Education Initiative.  When she’s not working, Lynn spends her time watching sci-fi and action movies, writing her own books, going on long walks through the woods, traveling and exploring antique stores. Follow Lynn Hatter on Twitter: @HatterLynn.

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The 2018 legislative session opened Monday with the lingering conduct of sexual misdeeds hanging over it.  The latest lawmakers caught in the web are two of the Senate’s most powerful leaders.

A plan to move the state capitol away from Tallahassee is being met resistance from Tallahassee. The local chamber of commerce issued a statement Tuesday.

Florida U.S. Senator Bill Nelson and Governor Rick Scott are in agreement: a plan to allow offshore oil drilling by President Donald Trump's administration isn't good for Florida, and it comes as Nelson is also asking the Trump administration to pull back from repealing safety regulations made in response to the 2010 BP/Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill.

Time is running out for Congress to reauthorize a federal program that helps insure more than nine million children nationwide. Florida has the fourth highest enrollment of low-income kids in the children’s health insurance program called CHIP.

Northwest Florida Congressman Matt Gaetz is among those calling for the firing or resignation of FBI Special Counsel Robert Mueller. He’s investigating Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential Election. Now some of Florida’s gubernatorial candidates are jumping into the fray.

Florida voters could be asked to ban oil drilling off Florida’s coasts. The proposal got the green-light Thursday before a Constitution Revision Commission Panel and there was little opposition.

Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran says he believes embattled Sen. Jack Latvala is heading toward expulsion from the chamber. Latvala is facing multiple accusations of sexual harassment.

A fight over public employee labor unions is brewing in the legislature. Critics are decrying a bill they say is aimed at union-busting, while the measure’s sponsor claims it’s meant to ensure unions are doing their jobs.

Florida State University has hired Willie Taggart as the new head football coach.  He had been considered the front-runner for the job.

Former Florida State University football coach Jimbo Fisher says accepting a job at Texas A&M University was a no-brainer. He issued his first statement Monday after splitting from FSU last week.

Florida State University will be searching for a new head football coach for the first time in more than 40 years.  Jimbo Fisher has accepted a job at Texas A&M University.

Speculation continues over whether Florida State University football head coach Jimbo Fisher will stay with FSU or move on to Texas A&M University. But the coach remains mum on his decision.

A proposal prohibiting local school board members from being paid looks unlikely to go before Florida voters. But term limits for those members and making superintendents appointed instead of elected are moving ahead.

Tallahassee is not the only state capitol reeling from sexual harassment claims. Legislatures in California, Indiana, Missouri, Washington and at least seven others are also dealing with the issue.

The Florida Education Association, the state’s largest teachers union, along with seven Florida teachers are suing the state, the Florida Department of Education and all 67 public school districts. That includes university lab schools, Florida Virtual School and the Florida School for the Deaf and Blind. At issue: whether the state's “Best and Brightest” teacher bonus program discriminates against black and Hispanic educators and those over 40.

For many young girls its hard navigating middle and high school. There’s cafeteria politics coupled with changing relationships among friends and family. It’s also a time for body changes, and  one group of young women say with all they have going on, the last thing they want to deal with is a dress code.

Federal funding that provides insurance for nearly 340,000 Florida kids will expire in September unless Congress acts. It’s called the  Children’s Health Insurance Program and it supports kids who don’t qualify for Medicaid.

Governor Rick Scott says he will veto the legislature’s education funding proposal, sending lawmakers back to the drawing board in a special session next week. Scott says he and legislative leaders have agreed to spend another $200 million for education, and put more money into the state’s tourism and job recruitment agencies.

Florida’s public education board had its say on a controversial ed bill and the state budget Tuesday.  Public school officials and a state lawmaker presented opposing views on how education policy played out during the legislative session.

Charter School Lobbyist: Education Bill Could End Up In Court

May 11, 2017

There are growing demands for Governor Rick Scott to veto both the state budget, and a controversial education companion measure that critics say goes too far.  House Bill 7069 covers everything from charter schools to testing to sunscreen.

State lawmakers finally signed off on a new state budget Monday night after a bit of a delay.

This week on Florida Matters we’ll take a look at what’s in the $82.4 billion spending plan along with a few other issues decided during the 60-day session.


Florida lawmakers have a budget. But that’s come at the cost of a process that has in recent years, been a lot more transparent than it is now. Lawmakers have struck deals largely in secret, seemingly backtracking on House Speaker Richard Corcoran’s promise that this would be the most transparent process in legislative history.

State employees are in line for pay raises for the first time in years. But the potential trade-offs for those pay bumps is raising concerns.

Florida lawmakers appear to be moving forward with a House priority bill boosting funding to charter schools that set up near chronically failing public schools. The measure, dubbed schools of hope, is a priority of House Speaker Richard Corcoran but its final form is still being debated.

A proposal allowing Florida Power and Light to charge customers for exploratory natural gas drilling has cleared a key senate hurdle, despite numerous consumer concerns. The company calls the move a hedge against future fuel increases.

It appears talks regarding Florida’s budget have re-started with the House budget chief saying talks could begin as early as tonight. Earlier in the day the House’s budget committee voted to re-authorizing the current year’s spending plan with a few changes, after lawmakers appeared to be at a stand-still.

Can Florida Lawmakers leave Tallahassee on time? The mood in the state capital has gone from one of pessimism, to cautious optimism that leaders can strike key deals in time.

The Florida House has unveiled plans to overhaul the state’s Medicaid program. The proposal includes new premiums and work requirements. But longtime observers say the program is stingy as-is, and they’re questioning whether the House plan is even feasible.

House Speaker Richard Corcoran says changes to the Senate’s plan to buy land south of Lake Okeechobee make the proposal better, but he’s refusing to cave on one big issue: whether to borrow money to finance the system.

After a rough start, a Florida Senate education panel has managed to move a major testing bill forward. The proposal is a mix of two separate testing bills.

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