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The Florida Roundup
The Florida Roundup is a live, weekly call-in show with a distinct focus on the issues affecting Floridians. Each Friday at noon, listeners can engage in the conversation with journalists, newsmakers and other Floridians about change, policy and the future of our lives in the sunshine state.Join our hosts, veteran journalists from our partner public radio stations: WLRN’s Tom Hudson, broadcasting from Miami and WJCT’s Melissa Ross, broadcasting from Jacksonville.

Lawmakers tackle property insurance; DeSantis targets Florida prosecutor; the ‘cone of uncertainty'

 Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis gestures as he speaks during a news conference Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. DeSantis announced that he was suspending State Attorney Andrew Warren, of the 13th Judicial Circuit, due to "neglect of duty."
Chris O'Meara
/
Associated Press
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis gestures as he speaks during a news conference Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, in Tampa, Fla. DeSantis announced that he was suspending State Attorney Andrew Warren, of the 13th Judicial Circuit, due to "neglect of duty."

On this week's Florida Roundup, we discuss Florida's troubled property insurance industry, along with Andrew Warren's trial against Gov. DeSantis and how hurricane forecasting could change.

Legislative leaders will soon begin a second special session to try to fix property insurance problems in Florida, which is a major concern for homeowners and policymakers.

The special session to tackle property insurance issues is scheduled for Dec. 12-16. The issue is once again front and center after the devastation caused by Hurricanes Ian and Nicole.

New Florida House Speaker Paul Renner has called this issue a priority, saying he’s aiming for “systemic reform” that will shore up the private market and steer policyholders away from the state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp. But lawmakers will have a lot to sort through as the already chaotic Florida property insurance market surged this year, leaving many homeowners scrambling for protection and worried about skyrocketing costs.

Guests:


DeSantis targets Democratic state attorney

Secrecy, strategy and spin: A new report says they were all part of Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ decision to suspend a Florida prosecutor who promised to protect abortion rights.

Records show that the Republican governor’s office had been quietly targeting Hillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren for months, trying to build a case to take down an outspoken prosecutor who was becoming one of the highest-profile elected Democrats in Florida. They decided Warren’s abortion pledge gave them the ammunition they needed.

However, reports show the governor and his team didn’t account for Warren’s reaction to his firing. He has sued in federal court on First Amendment grounds. In the complaint, Warren has accused DeSantis of unconstitutionally punishing a critic and potential political rival who had exercised his right to free speech.

Guests:

  • Jason Garcia, an investigative reporter covering corporate influence and the publisher of Seeking Rents on Substack.
  • Dara Kam, senior writer with the News Service of Florida who has been covering the trial.


Is it time to nix the ‘cone of uncertainty’?

Twenty years ago the National Hurricane Center debuted what it called the “cone of uncertainty.” The graphic shows the most likely path an approaching storm is expected to take, but each year there’s renewed debate over the cone and how it’s interpreted.

With the 2022 Atlantic hurricane season in the books — and with the cleanup continuing after the devastation of Hurricane Ian — is it time for an update to the cone?

Researchers from the University of Miami surveyed Florida residents about their understanding of the cone and found that many respondents misinterpreted aspects of the graphic, like the size of the storm, areas of likely damage as well as watches and warnings.

Those researchers are working with the hurricane center to improve the cone and develop graphics that can do a better job of communicating the potential effects of a storm.

Guest: Robert Eicher, assistant professor of meteorology at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and a freelance Certified Broadcast Meteorologist.

Copyright 2022 WJCT News 89.9. To see more, visit WJCT News 89.9.

Brendan Rivers comes to WJCT News with years of experience reporting and hosting news for several stations in the Daytona Beach area.