LISTEN LIVE

News

News

A federal grand jury has subpoenaed documents related to former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, his failed 2018 gubernatorial bid, a charity and a wealthy donor. The Tampa Bay Times first reported the March 26th subpoena.

School ‘Guardian’ Program Grows

May 31, 2019

An executive order signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in February helped increase the number of counties participating in a controversial “guardian” program that allows school staff members to be armed on campus, Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran said Thursday. 

JERUSALEM – At the end of the day for Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, it was about building relationships, making new connections and checking in with familiar political allies.

DeSantis spent the last day of his marathon mission to Israel meeting with embattled Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu along with the Cabinet and several lawmakers before placing a prayer in the Western Wall for Florida’s safety this hurricane season and a prayer from a Panhandle girl who lost her house in Hurricane Michael.

Hurricane Irma was at Category 4 strength when it crossed the Florida Keys in September of 2017. And the Keys are still in the rebuilding process, even as a new hurricane season starts.

Senator Rick Scott stands at podium
Kerry Sheridan/WUSF

Hurricane season starts June 1, and now is the time to get prepared, officials said this week.

The Sarasota Orchestra wants to build a performance space specifically designed for its acoustics and to expand programming.
Sarasota Orchestra

The Sarasota Orchestra will look beyond the city limits for a new home. The announcement comes a week after Sarasota rejected the orchestra's plan to build a new music center at downtown Payne Park.

In a statement, the orchestra said "pressing calendar constraints and acoustic limitations at the six venues used by Sarasota Orchestra currently hinder growth and future achievement of its mission."

Rubin Disputes Allegations Amid Calls For Resignation

May 30, 2019
Office of Financial Regulation Commissioner Ronald Rubin was fired on Thursday.
Office of the Financial Regulator

Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis wants the state’s top financial regulator --- whom he championed for the job earlier this year --- to resign, amid allegations of sexual harassment.

A little nudging for storm prep shouldn’t be necessary after Matthew battered Florida’s east coast in 2016, Irma essentially drenched the entire state in 2017, and Michael ground up a chunk of the Panhandle last year.

Disaster Relief Package Blocked Again In Congress

May 30, 2019

A second congressional Republican, arguing for a vote by the full House, blocked an attempt Tuesday to pass long-stalled federal disaster relief funding that would assist Florida’s hurricane-ravaged Panhandle.

Tanzanian children playing soccer
Jordan Peloubet

A junior at Tampa Prep is raising money to help build a soccer field back in his birthplace of Arusha, Tanzania.

Jordan Peloubet said the field would provide a wonderful opportunity to the children of the village and their families. Led by his father, Drew, the Peloubet family has been able to work with the organization love.fútbol, a non-profit group that builds soccer fields in developing countries.

Prosecutor Ayala Will Not Seek Second Term

May 29, 2019
Renato Sago / WMFE

More than two years after she created a firestorm by saying she would not seek the death penalty, Central Florida State Attorney Aramis Ayala announced Tuesday she will not run for re-election in 2020. 

Florida’s Director of Cannabis has only been on the newly-created job a few months, but is already helping architect the foundation for a state hemp program.

A class-action lawsuit has been filed challenging the use of solitary confinement in Florida prisons.

If you went to the beach over the Memorial Day weekend, you may have seen sea turtle nesting areas cordoned off for protection. That's because South Florida is in the midst of sea turtle nesting season, which began in March and ends in October.

Hurricane forecasting has come a long way since Ken Graham worked the night shift on the Gulf Coast, when warnings about killer storms like Hurricane Andrew came only three days in advance.

Governor, Cabinet Sued Over Plans To Meet In Israel

May 28, 2019
Gov. Ron DeSantis, seen in a file photo.
Daylina Miller / WUSF Public Media

An open-government watchdog group and several news outlets are suing Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis and members of the Cabinet in an effort to stop their planned meeting in Jerusalem. 

Gov. DeSantis Backs Lifting Airbnb Sanctions

May 28, 2019

While traveling in Israel this week, Gov. Ron DeSantis has twice said Florida should lift economic sanctions on the home-sharing platform Airbnb after the company reversed course on a move to delist about 200 West Bank properties.

Post-traumatic stress throws up roadblocks for people trying to go about their days normally.

Enjoyable pastimes for others, like Fourth of July fireworks, could trigger a fight-or-flight response from a veteran for whom the popping sounds or sulfur smell bring up combat memories.

Approval Of Disaster Relief Package Delayed

May 28, 2019

A long-stalled federal disaster relief package, which is expected to help the Panhandle’s recovery from Hurricane Michael, will have to wait for a vote until the U.S. House returns from this weekend’s holiday recess. 

Prosecutors Want Florida Massacre Suspect's Medical Records

May 28, 2019

Prosecutors are seeking mental health and medical records of the former student charged with last year's Florida school massacre. 

Pinellas County Sheriff Gualtieri pictured standing at a podium surrounded by law enforcement officers.
WUSF Public Media

At a forum tonight in Clearwater, community members will gather to discuss immigration, particularly bills that passed this year in the Florida House and Senate. 

The meeting will be held at 6:30 p.m. at Centro Cristiano El Shaddai.

people rowings in a lake at Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota
NBP

Nathan Benderson Park in Sarasota has been selected as the site for the 2020 U.S. Olympic and Paralympic rowing team trials. The event will determine who represents the United States at the Olympics in Tokyo.

The inside of a Catholic Church sits empty.
Wikimedia Commons

The Catholic Church has been under public scrutiny since 2002, when the Boston Globe published stories showing how leadership covered up a series of sexual abuse cases. Almost two decades have passed, but the church hasn’t been able to shake its tarnished reputation.

Southeast High School in Bradenton tweeted that recent graduates Albert Ales and Zachary Morris were killed Friday while exploring in Peru.
Southeast High School

Two teens who recently graduated from high school in Bradenton have died in a crash while traveling in Peru.

An American flag blows in the wind.
Wikimedia Commons

Memorial Day weekend is a time to reflect and relax. There are many events happening across Florida and the United States in honor of  the holiday. Below, you will find plenty of parades, concerts, and commemorative events to fill your weekend.

Governor Ron DeSantis signed a tax bill Wednesday that is estimated to save Florida families nearly $47 million during two sales tax holidays. Another part of the bill is expected to save commercial real estate renters more than $64 million by reducing the tax rate.

This is the first time Sirena Saul is meeting Jason Louis in person. They’ve only been in touch by phone.

Louis, a high school senior at Miami Norland, gives Saul a tight hug and they get to work—shopping for a prom suit at Harrell’s Fine Fashions and Tuxedo Central in Lauderhill. 

Saul tells him she’s paying for everything: his suit, shoes, tickets to prom and a photographer.

Describing it as a “top priority,” Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday directed Secretary of State Laurel Lee to immediately start a review of the security of state and county elections systems after disclosures about Russian hacking during the 2016 campaign.

In a one-page letter to Lee, the state’s top elections official, DeSantis indicated the review will focus on cybersecurity and involve all 67 counties.

Construction equipment in a yard
Kerry Sheridan/WUSF

Nearly two-thirds of Florida –some 6.7 million customers - lost power during 2017’s Hurricane Irma. Utilities blamed most of those outages on falling trees and debris that knocked over power lines.

To strengthen the electrical grid against future storms, Florida Power and Light is moving more power lines underground.

By The Numbers: Florida’s Death Penalty

May 22, 2019

Serial killer Bobby Joe Long is scheduled to be executed at 6 p.m. Thursday at Florida State Prison in the 1984 murder of Michelle Simms in Hillsborough County. 

Pages