Lloyd Dunkelberger

Lloyd Dunkelberger

Lloyd Dunkelberger has been covering Florida government for over three decades. He’s reported and edited in Tallahassee for the New York Times Regional Newspapers group, Florida Politics, and the News Service of Florida. He grew up in Jacksonville and Palm Beach County and got his journalism degree at the University of Florida.

Gov. DeSantis defends state’s response to COVID-19 in nursing homes

By: - May 13, 2020

More than four in 10 COVID-19 deaths in Florida have occurred at a nursing home or other long-term care facility. As of Wednesday, Florida had 42,402 coronavirus cases, with 1,827 deaths, including 776 — 42 percent — among residents or staff in a nursing home or assisted living facility, according to the state Department of […]

Political fundraising grinds to a halt for FL’s top politicos during COVID-19 pandemic

By: - May 11, 2020

Like it shut down Florida’s economy, the COVID-19 outbreak has had a similar impact on fundraising for the state’s top politicians. There was little money-raising activity for Gov. Ron DeSantis and the three Florida Cabinet members in April, new financial reports show. The Republican governor’s political committee — Friends of Ron DeSantis – only collected […]

National jobless rate soars to Great Depression levels, with the burden falling more heavily on women and minority workers

By: - May 8, 2020

With jobless rates not seen since the Great Depression, the U.S. Department of Labor reported Friday that 20.5 million American workers lost their jobs in April, bringing the national unemployment rate to 14.7 percent. The economic shutdown — caused by the COVID-19 outbreak — has exceeded the Great Recession, which peaked at a 10 percent […]

early voting booth

As the state fails to act, a federal judge promises relief for felons unable to vote because of court debt

By: - May 6, 2020

At the conclusion of an eight-day trial over the constitutionality of a Florida law requiring former felons to pay all their court costs before they can vote, U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle said Wednesday that he will help those too poor to pay their legal obligations. Hinkle chided the Florida Department of State for failing […]

Voting booths in Leon County

Judge says he will consider whether Florida’s felon voting law discriminates on race

By: - May 5, 2020

As a major voting-rights case heads to its finale, a federal trial judge warned the state on Tuesday that he would look at whether a 2019 Florida law that added financial barriers for former felons seeking to vote violated racial discrimination standards. The law, enacted by the 2019 Legislature, required former felons, once they leave […]

early voting booth

Elections official: state faces backlog of 85,000 former felons seeking the restoration of their voting rights

By: - May 4, 2020

With five months left before the voter registration deadline for the presidential race, the state director of the Division of Elections testified Monday that her office has a backlog of some 85,000 registrations from felons who may be able to vote under Amendment 4 but are awaiting determination of their eligibility. But the state is […]

Second Chances ad

Key Amendment 4 backer supports voting law now being challenged in federal court

By: - May 1, 2020

Desmond Meade, the man who led the movement to restore voting rights to more than 1 million former felons, supports a law that is now being challenged as an unconstitutional barrier to voting, according to testimony presented in a federal trial on Friday. A coalition of civil rights groups are challenging the 2019 law that […]

Civil rights leader: ‘Once a person has paid their debt to society, they should be able to vote’

By: - April 30, 2020

A Florida civil rights leader testified Thursday that a 2019 law requiring former felons to pay all court costs before having voting rights restored — even though they have finished their prison terms — has disrupted efforts to register African-American voters. In a federal trial where the constitutionality of the law is being challenged, Marsha […]

Court official: antiquated court records present a challenge to felons seeking the right to vote

By: - April 29, 2020

Felons with older convictions seeking to have their voting rights restored in Hillsborough County may have to rely on a system that once kept critical records in a shoebox, a top court official testified Wednesday. Douglas Bakke, the chief operations officer for the Hillsborough County Clerk of the Court’s office, said the courts kept records […]

Defense lawyer: State high court ruling undermined Miami-Dade program restoring felons’ voting rights

By: - April 28, 2020

The public defender in Florida’s largest county testified Tuesday that a Florida Supreme Court opinion in January caused the county to shut down a “rocket docket” providing a convenient path for felons who have served their time to see their voting rights restored. After the passage of Amendment 4 in 2018 and a subsequent law […]

Opening testimony in voting-rights trial includes evidence of racial disparity, administrative roadblocks

By: - April 27, 2020

The question of whether Latoya Moreland and hundreds of thousands of Floridians like her will be able to vote in this year’s presidential election is the crux of a federal trial that opened Monday in Tallahassee. Moreland, a 39-year-old Bradenton mother with four children, was sentenced to two years on probation for drug possession in […]

Second Chances ad

A federal trial starts today on a FL law that opponents say unconstitutionally restricts voting rights for ex-felons

By: - April 27, 2020

A federal judge will hear arguments today in a challenge by civil rights groups to a 2019 Florida law that requires felons who have served their prison time to pay all their fines and court costs before they have their voting rights restored. The case is being closely watched because supporters of Amendment 4 say […]