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Chris Sprowls
Florida House of Representatives

The Tampa Bay area should get a larger voice in the state legislature next year. Members of the Florida House on Tuesday named Chris Sprowls of Pinellas County as its next speaker.

GOVERNOR'S PRESS OFFICE; DAYLINA MILLER/WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA; WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

Florida Supreme Court justices are the highest-paid statewide officials, with their salaries substantially higher than the amounts paid to the governor, state Cabinet members and legislators.

House Seeks To Defend Medical Marijuana Law

Jun 4, 2019

As court battles continue about whether the state is properly carrying out a 2016 constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana, the Florida House is again trying to weigh in. 

An Airbnb sign.
Wikimedia Commons

Lawmakers in Tallahassee are closer to enacting statewide regulations on short-term rentals. But local governments, which have set their own rules, are opposed to the proposal.  

Florida Abortion Bill Would Require Minors To Obtain Consent

Apr 8, 2019

Stephanie Loraine Piñeiro was 17 when she discovered she was pregnant for the second time. 

She says her parents were livid about her first pregnancy a year earlier, though she never dared tell them she was raped. Her father took her to a clinic for an abortion. On the way home, she says, he threw birth control pills from the clinic out of the car window and ordered her to abstain. 

All 120 Florida House seats were up for grabs in 2018 and a few races offered a few firsts for candidates in Tampa Bay.

Republican Ray Blacklidge and Democrat Jennifer Webb battled for an open seat in Pinellas County’s House District 69 for the seat being vacated by Republican Kathleen Peters.

In the end, the win went to Democrat Webb who will become the first openly gay woman in the Florida Legislature.

The Florida House is seeking to intervene in a potentially far-reaching legal battle about the constitutionality of a 2017 law that set regulations for the state’s medical-marijuana industry.

Florida's Republican legislative leaders are starting their final negotiations on a new state budget after reaching a deal on key details behind closed doors.

The Florida House is ready to take up two familiar healthcare reform measures Wednesday. Supporters say both bills will make care more accessible and more affordable. The plans face uphill battles in the Senate.

University of South Florida St. Petersburg

Tucked away in a higher education bill moving through the Florida House is a modification that would phase out separate accreditation at two University of South Florida campuses.

University of South Florida

A bill under consideration by the Florida House would shake the very foundation of the University of South Florida by revoking the separate accreditations of its St. Petersburg and Sarasota-Manatee campuses.

State Lawmaker Resigns From House After Residency Probe

Nov 1, 2017

Democrat Daisy Baez, a first-term lawmaker who had been considered a rising star in her party, left the state House on Wednesday as she pleaded guilty to perjury in an investigation about her legal residency.

In a single-sentence letter delivered Wednesday morning to House Speaker Richard Corcoran, Baez wrote that “effective immediately, I am resigning my office.”

Second Democrat To Seek Sarasota House Seat

Sep 22, 2017
Florida House of Representatives website

A second Democratic candidate has opened a campaign account to run in a special election for the House seat vacated by former state Rep. Alex Miller, R-Sarasota. 

Photos: USF/Amazon; Collage: Stephanie Colombini/WUSF

She’s one of the most sought-after political analysts in Florida and the nation, and she has a new book out, "Florida's Minority Trailblazers: The Men and Women Who Changed the Face of Florida Government.” Our latest Florida Matters “Newsmaker” is University of South Florida political science professor Dr. Susan MacManus.


Members of the Florida House moved through a long list of bills during a floor session Tuesday. The meeting teed up several tax cut proposals for a floor vote.

House Committee Advances Redistricting Bill

Apr 25, 2017

The House Judiciary committee is advancing a bill regarding redistricting. It adds restrictions on voting districts and when people can challenge them.

House Approves ‘Certificate Of Need’ Repeal

Apr 20, 2017

The Florida House on Wednesday easily passed a bill that would eliminate a controversial regulatory process for the approval of new hospitals.

The House is proposing nearly $300 million in tax cuts.  The ways and means committee unveiled their ideas this week.

Florida mayors came to the Capitol this week to circle the wagons.

Mark Schreiner / WUSF 89.7 News

While the University of South Florida Board of Trustees had a full agenda for Thursday's meeting, two outside events Wednesday ended up as topics of concern.

The Florida legislative session has begun, which means it’s time to get serious about the state’s budget.  But the past few months of prologue have done little to bring the parties together.

Environmental groups fighting hydraulic fracturing in Florida have a new megaphone.

House, Senate Agree On Health Budget

Mar 4, 2016

House and Senate budget chiefs reached agreement Thursday night on two areas of the state spending plan for the year beginning July 1, striking deals on funding for environmental programs and health care.

House Speaker Backs KidCare For Legal Immigrants

Jan 13, 2016

To the surprise and delight of lawmakers who have long backed the proposal, House Speaker Steve Crisafulli on Tuesday called for eliminating a five-year waiting period for children of legal immigrants to be eligible for the state's KidCare health-insurance program.

Health Industry Regulatory Changes Sail In House

Jan 13, 2016

A House panel Tuesday quickly approved two high-profile bills that would revamp health-care regulations --- and are drawing opposition from at least parts of the hospital industry.

Senate Again Focused On Uber Driver Insurance

Dec 9, 2015
Screenshot from Apple App Store

The Senate isn't ready to match a House proposal that would prevent local governments from regulating popular app-based transportation services, such as Uber and Lyft.

Redistricting Session Falls Apart Amid House-Senate Battle

Aug 21, 2015

A special session called to redraw state congressional lines was derailed Friday, the latest sign of growing acrimony between Republican leaders of the House and Senate.

A Florida legislator wants a criminal investigation into Planned Parenthood, but the organization calls the request "politically motivated."

State Rep. Charles McBurney, a Jacksonville Republican and chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, asked for the inquiry in a letter Thursday to the head of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement.

House Backs Changes For State Workers, Hospitals

Jun 12, 2015

Pitching more competition and choices in the health-care system, the House on Friday passed six bills that include proposals to revamp health coverage for state employees and eliminate key regulations in the hospital industry.

But as lawmakers head into the final week of a special legislative session, it remains unclear whether the Senate will pass any of the bills. Senate President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, remained non-committal Friday, though he suggested the House's proposed changes to employee health insurance likely will not pass.

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