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2018 Florida Legislature

Most child marriages in Florida would be banned — though not for 16- and 17-year-olds when there's a pregnancy — under a bill overwhelmingly approved by the House on Wednesday.

Tuesday in Tallahassee was a day for love and awareness. Governor Rick Scott marked the day as Developmental Disabilities Awareness Day. Advocates took it as their cue to ask for their legislative priorities this Valentines Day.

A Democratic Florida lawmaker tried using Nazis, guns and porn star Stormy Daniels, among other topics, to try to thwart a proposed resolution recognizing pornography as a health risk.

Florida students who find themselves with excess credit hours might soon catch a tuition break. A move is underway to roll back a policy that could charge them double-tuition.

Lawmakers Debate University Performance Funding

Feb 14, 2018

An education bill is sparking debate about how universities receive performance funding and lawmakers are facing an important decision about the future of the program.

A number of child welfare bills are continuing to move in the Florida Legislature.

Florida lawmakers want first responders to get workers’ compensation for post-traumatic stress disorder. But the House bill would only give them a year to file a claim. 

Teachers' Unions Threatened By Florida House Bill

Feb 12, 2018

House Bill 7055 has been a lightning rod for controversy. The measure is known for a move to offer bullied students scholarships for private or charter schools. But, tucked away in the bill’s 200 pages, one provision threatens teachers’ unions with decertification.

The Florida House and Senate have both passed their versions of next year’s budget. Both proposals spend about $87-billion, but the two plans remain for apart when it comes to how much of that money is put toward issues like healthcare and education.

The power struggle between the Florida Legislature and the state’s local governments continues. That was obvious during Friday morning’s (2/9) meeting in the Leon County Commission Chambers.

With less than a month to work out substantial differences, the Republican-controlled Florida House and Senate on Thursday passed dueling $87 billion budgets for the coming year.

Marion County Public Schools

Following a sharply worded partisan debate, the Republican-controlled Florida House on Thursday passed a sweeping education bill that would add yet another private-school voucher program in the state while also making a vast array of changes on everything from school testing to how much money charter schools can receive.

A bill allowing Florida prison officials to recruit more young correctional officers is continuing to move in both chambers of the Florida Legislature.

Florida lawmakers want to cut penalties for people who accidentally show their concealed weapons. The bill is ready for a floor vote in the House. But gun control advocates are worried the plan is a step towards open carry. 

Bill Calls For Reporting Birth 'Adverse' Incidents

Feb 9, 2018

Physicians, certified advanced registered nurse midwives and licensed midwives who attend at-home births or deliveries in birthing centers would be required to report to the state “adverse” medical incidents, under a bill the Senate considered Thursday.

Senate Poised To Pass Needle Exchange Expansion

Feb 9, 2018

The Senate is inching closer to approving a bill that would allow hospitals, clinics, medical schools and substance-abuse treatment programs to begin offering needle-and-syringe exchange programs to reduce the spread of diseases such as HIV.

A proposal to redistribute hundreds of millions of dollars away from safety-net hospitals and toward increasing base Medicaid payments at all hospitals drew opposition Wednesday in the Florida Senate.

Lawmakers Poised To Pass 'Pregnancy Support' Measure

Feb 8, 2018

The Florida Legislature for more than a decade earmarked funding in the state budget for “pregnancy support services.”

Florida House of Representatives

The Florida House and Senate are poised to approve rival versions of a new $87 billion state budget.

Florida lawmakers are considering legislation that would create a uniform framework for bike sharing companies in the state of Florida. Tampa Republican Senator Dana Young said her bill addresses preemption and enforcement. 

Already, the Florida Supreme Court has rejected more than three dozen appeals involving death row inmates, who received their sentences before 2002 and did not require unanimous juries. A panel of Florida lawmakers is now trying again to make a fix to that part of the state’s death penalty process.

‘Remote’ Pharmacies Plan Gets Senate OK

Feb 7, 2018

The Senate Health Policy Committee gave unanimous approval Tuesday to a bill that would create in law so-called “remote dispensing site pharmacies” and allow managed-care plans to use them in meeting network adequacy requirements.

House Panel Targets 'Sober Homes'

Feb 7, 2018

Florida would require additional background screening for operators of controversial recovery residences known as “sober homes,” under a bill that cleared a House panel Tuesday.

The Florida legislature is again considering banning fracking—the process of extracting oil and natural gas underground. Lawmakers have tussled over the issue in recent years, but proposal sponsor Dana Young says the process is too dangerous to allow in Florida.

Florida lawmakers want to expand the use of digital voting and tallying machines. Many of the state’s election managers are behind the plan. But critics don’t want to leave the paper ballot behind.

The Florida House has passed a bill making it easier for law enforcement to return firearms to certain gun owners without a court order.

The Florida House has passed a bill making it easier for firearm dealers to pay for background checks.

A proposal to allow unused prescription drugs to be donated to low-income patients is advancing in the Florida Legislature. Florida already allows cancer drugs be donated.

Florida House members are considering cutting funding for programs that supply patients with a powerful addiction-fighting drug.

A Jacksonville addiction specialist says that move could make it harder to stem the opioid epidemic.

Groups Warn Against ‘Premature' Workers' Comp Changes

Feb 6, 2018

After lobbying the Legislature to makes changes to the workers’ compensation insurance system for the past 18 months, business leaders are backing off this year.


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