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News Service of Florida

Florida’s citrus industry ended its growing season on a slight uptick, regaining the Sunshine State’s dominance in orange production over California.
Flikr / Creative Commons

News Service Of Florida

Amid ongoing struggles in Florida's citrus industry, the Department of Citrus appears to be turning attention to studying orange juice consumption.

The department said Tuesday it is looking for three separate studies that would assess various aspects of orange juice consumption, including how it can affect people’s moods when drinking it as a snack.

News Service of Florida and Steve Newborn

Part of a new elections law that requires “sufficient nonpermitted parking” at early voting sites will create an unconstitutional burden on young voters attending colleges or universities, plaintiffs in a long-running dispute over campus early voting argued in documents filed Monday.

The parking requirement was tucked into a sweeping elections package during the waning days of the legislative session in early May. Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the package (SB 7066), and the new law went into effect on July 1.

The National Hurricane Center says a trough of  low pressure has an 80 percent chance of develloping into a tropical depression in the Gulf of Mexico in the next five days.
FLORIDA PUBLIC RADIO EMERGENCY NETWORK

Florida’s Division of Emergency Management is bracing for the potential growth of a storm system expected to move south into the Gulf of Mexico later this week, with particular attention given to Panhandle counties impacted by Hurricane Michael last year.

By News Service of Florida

Calling arguments by the state Office of Public Counsel “premature, unnecessary and baseless,” Florida Power & Light is asking regulators to deny a request for an administrative hearing on a proposal that includes adding 20 solar-power plants.

Governor's press office

News Service of Florida

Gov. Ron DeSantis’ net worth dropped nearly 9 percent in 2018 as he left Congress and made a successful run for governor.

DeSantis reported a net worth of $283,605 as of Dec. 31, down from $310,971 at the end of 2017, according to a new financial disclosure posted Monday on the Florida Commission on Ethics website.

State officials faced a Monday deadline to file updated disclosures, which typically detail their finances as of the end of 2018.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody
Daylina Miller/WUSF Public Media

News Service of Florida

Florida’s new Cabinet lineup is once again a millionaires’ row.

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried and Attorney General Ashley Moody were elected to the Cabinet in November, joining returning Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis. And while the new lineup is slightly less well-off than the previous Cabinet, Fried, Moody and Patronis each top seven figures in net worth, according to newly filed financial-disclosure reports.

News Service of Florida

After successfully pushing through a controversial law that bans so-called sanctuary cities, the chairman of the Republican Party of Florida is planning a statewide “listening” tour on immigration. 

Tampa electric
Google Maps

Feeling a little warm lately? You’re not alone.

Tampa Electric Co. customers set a record this week for summer electricity use.

Attorneys for Cambridge Christian School filed a document Thursday at the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that suggested the Supreme Court ruling could affect the pre-game prayer case.
Google Maps

A week after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that a large cross can remain on public land in Maryland, the decision is being cited in a legal battle about whether a Tampa Christian school should have been allowed to offer a prayer over a stadium loudspeaker before a high school football championship game.

Pinellas County Sheriff  Bob Gualtieri
Julio Ochoa / WUSF Public Media

News Service of Florida

HAVANA -- Three minutes and 51 seconds.

That’s how long it took Nikolas Cruz to kill 17 students and staff members and injure another 17 during last year’s shooting rampage at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis speaks at a bill-signing event at the University of South Florida in Tampa on Wednesday.
Adam Bakst / WUSF Public Media

By News Service of Florida, Carrie Pinkard and Adam Bakst

Governor DeSantis said in Tampa Wednesday that he wants Florida to be the number one state for veterans.

He then promptly signed legislation that would help with that goal.

Daylina Miller/WUSF News

A move to eliminate a 90-day Medicaid retroactive eligibility period will continue for at least another year.

children entering school building
School District of Manatee County

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday signed a budget-related bill that could lead to changes in a long-controversial formula for divvying up money among school districts.

After multiple issues with how public universities handled funds, the Florida Board of Governors required trustees at all 12 public universities to take a financial training session called Flavors of Money.
State University System Board of Governors

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed into a law a higher-education package that changes how public universities and colleges will fund construction projects, a top priority of House Speaker Jose Oliva, R-Miami Lakes.

The bill (SB 190) was prompted, in part, by a high-profile financial scandal at the University of Central Florida. The university was found to have misused millions of dollars in state funds for a construction project.

Florida will seek new bids in three years instead of renewing its contract with the company that oversaw last year’s botched SunPass conversion.
FourteenSixty / Flickr

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday signed a controversial measure aimed at expanding and building three toll roads on the western side of the state, with supporters saying the plan will help prepare for future growth and aid in disaster evacuations.

The Ledger

With the proposal awaiting a review by the Florida Supreme Court, prominent Orlando attorney John Morgan last month continued funneling money to a ballot measure that would increase the minimum wage. 

Daylina Miller/WUSF News

Florida legislators have passed a bill that would pave the way for residents to buy cheaper prescription drugs imported from Canada.

Mugshot of Robert Joseph Long
Florida Department of Corrections

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed his first death warrant, with an execution scheduled May 23 for Tampa-area serial killer Robert Joseph Long, according to documents posted on the Florida Supreme Court website. 

The state may have to pay millions of dollars more in treatment costs for inmates infected with hepatitis C.
Florida Department of Corrections

The state may have to pay millions of dollars more in treatment costs for inmates infected with hepatitis C, following a federal judge’s ruling Thursday that said prison officials have been “deliberately indifferent” in caring for thousands of inmates infected with the virus.

A stack of poker chips.
Jamie Adams / Wikimedia Commons

With three weeks left in the legislative session, House Speaker Jose Oliva is not rejecting the possibility of reaching a gambling deal with the Seminole Tribe of Florida. 

Sign reading "Vote precinct precinto"
Bobbie O'Brien / WUSF

A coalition of groups has asked a federal judge to require 32 Florida counties -- including a handful of Tampa Bay area ones -- to offer Spanish-language ballots and other election materials, the latest move in a legal battle that started last year. 

Florida Department of Environmental Protection

Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Friday he intends to keep Noah Valenstein as the state’s environmental secretary, a move that quickly drew praise from a number of conservationists. 

Wikipedia.com

Getting the state to come to the rescue of sports teams trying to build or refurbish stadiums could soon become a thing of the past.

Photo Courtesy of Florida Department of Environmental Protection

There is little chance the Florida Senate will revisit a controversial state law that has impacted public access to some beach areas, according to top Republicans in the chamber.

Gov. Ron DeSantis said it’s not productive to any gun-safety dialogue to focus on partisan politics, as Democrats continued to criticize President Donald Trump after two mass shootings over the weekend.
Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia Commons

In the final step in reshaping the Florida Supreme Court, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday named Carlos Muniz to the high court. 

Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried added sexual orientation and gender identity to workplace protections at the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Fried, the lone Democrat to hold one of the state’s three Cabinet positions, is the first to add such protections to hiring rules that address race, religion and disability.

Wikimedia Commons

University of Central Florida President Dale Whittaker on Friday has acknowledged a “broken culture” at his school, after receiving an investigative report on the improper use of state funding to construct a major campus building.

Gov. Ron DeSantis asked the Florida Supreme Court justices to issue an opinion on whether felons must pay all fines and fees before they are eligible to register to vote.
Flickr

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday rescinded 46 of the last-minute appointments former Gov. Rick Scott, now a member of the U.S. Senate, made in his final days in office.

The selections to various boards yanked by DeSantis Friday required Senate confirmation.

Among the names pulled were Andy Pollack, placed by Scott on the State Board of Education, and Carlos Beruff, named by the former governor to the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission.

Just hours after the inauguration Tuesday of Gov. Ron DeSantis, his predecessor, Rick Scott, was sworn into the U.S. Senate.

Twitter

Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis on Friday named an ardent opponent of Medicaid expansion to lead the state Agency for Health Care Administration and backed former state Sen. Dana Young to lead the tourism-marketing agency Visit Florida.

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