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'Growlers' Going to the Governor

Apr 26, 2015
Wikimedia Commons

Half-gallon "growlers" are closer to going under brewery taps across Florida.

The House on Friday joined the Senate in supporting the end of the state's prohibition on brewers being able to fill 64-ounce containers known as "growlers" for off-site consumption. Currently, brewers can only fill containers of other sizes.

"Let's all just push the button and free the growler here in the state of Florida," Majority Leader Rep. Dana Young, R-Tampa, said before the House voted unanimously to approve the bill.

Jury Convicts Final Three Defendants In FAMU Hazing Case

Apr 26, 2015

An Orlando jury has handed down hazing and manslaughter convictions to the final three defendants in the death of a Florida A&M University marching band drum major. The verdict brings a three and a half year old legal saga to a close.

AP Photo/Lauren Victoria Burke

Ethical questions are being raised about the Tampa Bay Times' coverage of Don Hughes, the Ruskin man who flew a homemade gyrocopter onto the grounds of the Capitol.

The Times first reported on Hughes' flight close to the time he took to the air on Wednesday.

A bill that would require women to wait 24 hours before having abortions passed a second Senate panel Wednesday, while an identical version (HB 633) is ready to go to the House floor.

The Senate Judiciary Committee voted 6-3 along party lines to approve the Senate measure (SB 724), filed by Sen. Anitere Flores, R-Miami.

It would add a 24-hour waiting period to the conditions for informed consent before women can terminate pregnancies.

Remember the story of Davion Only? He's the teenager who gained worldwide notice after pleading with the congregation of a church in St. Petersburg to adopt him.Ten-thousand people came forward to inquire about him.But in the end, the answer to his prayer was already close at hand.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and a University of South Florida anthropology professor are developing a forensic research site, where investigators could study how the humid climate and sandy soil affect human corpses, The Tampa Tribune reports.

Florida veterans were forced to wait at least 30 days for nearly 93,000 medical appointments at VA medical facilities from September through February, and half of those delays were found at just seven sites in north Florida and the Panhandle, according to government data reviewed by The Associated Press.

The data shows the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs is far from reaching its goal of reducing long waits for care at some hospitals and clinics in its massive health system.

When cancer intruded into Warren Elly's life, he challenged himself, writing a daily web blog for all to see. In typical Warren Elly gusto, he wrote, "I'm not resigned to anything except the fight. With each tick of the clock, I am more determined to fight." And fight he did -- all the way to the end.

  Five months after narrowly rejecting a medical-marijuana ballot initiative, Florida voters overwhelmingly support allowing doctor-prescribed pot in the state, according to a poll released 

Daylina Miller/WUSF

    

Cuba is less than one hundred miles from the southernmost tip of Florida, but for years, travel to there has been restricted.

At a recent event called “Cuba Forum – Tampa at the Forefront of Historic Change,” business owners and community leaders who have lobbied for better relations with the country met with U.S. Commerce officials.

The Florida Legislature is considering several new measures to restrict abortions, including one with a strong chance of passage that calls for a 24-hour waiting period before a woman can undergo the procedure.

That measure, House Bill 0633, would require that a woman make one trip to the clinic for legally required counseling before coming back 24 hours later for the procedure. Another measure, House Bill 147, with less chance of passage, would require that abortion clinic doctors have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles.

The conservative political group Americans for Prosperity is taking aim at Senate President Andy Gardiner’s Medicaid expansion plans.

The mailers were sent to voters in the districts of 23 state senators, including Senate President Andy Gardiner. Officials from Americans for Prosperity said in a statement the current plan doesn’t do enough to curb health care costs.

The group, backed by the Koch brothers, wants to expand telemedicine, eliminate government oversight of health care and allow some health care workers to do more.

Tampa, Orlando Growth Behind State Population Boon

Mar 26, 2015
Associated Press

People moving to the Interstate 4 corridor and South Florida propelled the state's population to almost 20 million residents last year, allowing it to surpass New York as the nation's third-largest state, according to U.S. Census Bureau figures released Thursday.

More than half of Florida's growth last year came from three metropolitan areas: South Florida, Orlando and Tampa. With Florida adding another 292,000 residents last year, the state now has 19.9 million residents, trailing only California and Texas.

Daylina Miller/WUSF News

  Businesses in downtown Tampa now have a direct line to patrol officers assigned to the area thanks to an expansion of the Tampa Police Department’s “Business Watch" program. 

The program started in 2011 in Ybor City, where police say crime has been reduced 60 percent during the day and 50 percent at night.

Ben Brown / Orlando Sentinel

One person was found dead after a small helicopter crashed into an Orlando house.

The Orlando Sentinel reports the helicopter crashed Sunday afternoon, scattering debris and starting a small fire.

Orlando Fire Department Assistant Chief Hezedean Smith said when the flames were put out, firefighters found the person dead inside the guest house.

Smith did not identify the person.

Daylina Miller/WUSF News

With visibly shaking hands, University of South Florida medical student Chris DeClue opened his envelope.

The sound of rustling paper echoed through the speakers.

“USF. Diagnostic radiology,” he said as the crowd erupted into cheers.

Friday was National Match Day and 128 USF students, the school’s largest ever medical class to celebrate,  gathered at Ulele, a restaurant near downtown Tampa, to find out where they're going to do their post-graduate medical training.

Amendment 1 Spending Plan Lands Mixed Reviews

Mar 18, 2015
Robin Sussingham / WUSF 89.7 News

Florida's natural springs would get $50 million, the Kissimmee River is in line for $30 million, and a wastewater plan for the Florida Keys is up for $25 million, under a newly released House proposal that would help carry out a voter-approved increase in conservation dollars.

But there are few other clearly outlined projects in a $772.1 million proposal for next fiscal year released Tuesday by the House Agriculture & Natural Resources Appropriations Subcommittee. The proposal is focused more on land management and water projects than on new land acquisitions.

Former U.S. Ambassador Chris Hill is talking tonight (March 17) at 6 p.m. at the Mildred Sainier Pavilion at New College in Sarasota. He has a new book out, "Outpost:Life on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy: A Memoir."

Hill served in South Korea, the Balkans and Iraq. And now serves as Dean of the Josef Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver.

The Seminole Tribe of Florida is making an aggressive campaign for renewal of a gambling compact set to expire in July. The compact gives the tribe exclusive rights over games like blackjack.

Besides creating a television ad, the tribe also commissioned a poll which showed 61% of voters support the renewal of the compact.

Neil Newhouse, Partner and Co-Founder of Public Opinion Strategies, was one of the people in charge of conducting the poll. He discussed the poll's findings during a media conference call on Monday.

WEAR ABC 3

Human remains washed ashore in heavy fog Wednesday after seven Marines and four soldiers were killed in an Army helicopter crash during a night-time training mission off a Florida beach.

All 11 service members were presumed dead, according to a Pentagon official who spoke with The Associated Press on condition of anonymity for lack of authority to be identified in the media.

Kim Urr, 62, who works at the Navarre Beach campground near where the helicopter went down, said she heard a strange sound followed by two explosions around 8:30 p.m. Tuesday.

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