Briefs

New ad: FL Dems blast GOP lawmakers for ‘inherent hypocrisy’ when it comes to abortion rights

BY: - September 16, 2021

Democratic lawmakers in Florida vow to fight for abortion access and block attempts to pass a law similar to Texas’ extreme measure, with the help of ads that blast GOP lawmakers for alleged “inherent hypocrisy” when it comes to people’s freedom to make decision about their health. This week, the Florida Democratic Party released a […]

Following the Delta surge, FL lawmakers hear about the emerging Mu variant ‘not being responsive to the vaccine’

BY: - September 14, 2021

More COVID-19 mutations are emerging globally including the so-called Mu variant, raising concerns from state lawmakers about whether the strain is resistant to current vaccines used to provide protection against the virus. The World Health Organization has designated the Mu variant as a “variant of interest” and cited that the mutation may potentially reduce vaccine […]

AG Moody files for reelection in 2022; she’s the only candidate thus far

BY: - September 14, 2021

Attorney General Ashley Moody publicly opened her campaign for reelection next year, becoming the first and thus far only candidates in the race. “I am proud to announce that I will be seeking re-election as Florida’s attorney general, to continue building a stronger, safer Florida by prosecuting human trafficking, protecting our seniors, and combating the […]

Agriculture section of reconciliation bill centers on fighting climate change, enhancing research

BY: - September 13, 2021

WASHINGTON—The U.S. House Agriculture Committee on Monday finished marking up its section of the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package. The agriculture portion would provide funding for historically Black land grant colleges and investments in urban agriculture, along with boosting U.S. Department of Agriculture programs to address climate change threats in farming. The $66 billion agriculture measure passed along […]

U.S. Department of Education opens investigation on FL’s mask policies and possible violations of federal law

BY: - September 10, 2021

On the heels of a court decision allowing Florida education officials to continue penalizing school districts with strict mask mandates, the U.S. Department of Education has opened an investigation to determine if the state’s current mask policies are discriminatory to students with disabilities. The USDE sent a letter Friday notifying Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran […]

FL has seen a downward trend in hospitalizations for COVID-19

BY: - September 10, 2021

With Florida hospitals experiencing an influx of patients during the past month due to COVID-19 and the more contagious Delta variant, the state is now seeing a decline in hospitalizations. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on Friday reported 12,651 inpatient beds in use for COVID-19 cases, a decrease from a previous report […]

FL prison officer sentenced for assaulting young inmate in broom closet

BY: - September 10, 2021

Former Florida prison officer Terrance Reynolds, convicted of conspiracy to assault and intimidate young inmates at a South Florida prison, was sentenced in federal court this week to 33 months in prison. Reynolds, 31, was tried and convicted of conspiring with another officer to assault and intimidate the young inmates. Reynolds and another officer in […]

Texas’ restrictive abortion law triggers demonstrations in FL; abortion advocates deliver petition to FL Senate President

BY: - September 9, 2021

Following one of the nation’s strictest anti-abortion laws enforced in Texas, advocates for women’s reproductive rights on Thursday warned state lawmakers that they are prepared to fight for abortion access in Florida, as Republicans are signaling to introduce a similar measure in the 2022 legislative session. The Texas law targets abortions at the point when […]

Global report: FL among top states for mass incarceration

BY: - September 8, 2021

Florida and a dozen other states imprison people at the highest rates in the world, without demonstrating that incarceration reduces crime, says the Prison Policy Initiative, a non-partisan research and policy advocacy organization. Florida’s rate of incarceration in prisons and jails was 795 people per 100,000, 13th highest in the United States, according to the […]

Federal court ruling could compel FL to pause on permitting dredge and fill of wetlands

BY: - September 7, 2021

Protecting wetlands and waterways should not be at the broad discretion of states such as Florida that were granted permitting authority in the final days of the Trump administration, says a national environmental law organization, citing a sweeping Aug. 31 federal ruling limiting states’ authority. The ruling in U.S. District Court in Arizona tosses out […]

Schools

Leon School Superintendent: Education Commissioner misinterprets mask rules and would violate FL Constitution

BY: - September 2, 2021

In a strong rebuff to Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran, Leon School Supt. Rocky Hanna has stated emphatically that the state’s emergency rule on masks has been misinterpreted and would violate the Florida Constitution. Leon, in Florida’s state capital and at the center of a court case on the contentious mask issue, is one of […]

Prison policy report issues FL prisons an “F” grade for COVID response

BY: - September 1, 2021

Florida state prisons had the nation’s third-highest number of COVID-19 deaths among inmates and was 17th highest in its mortality rate, earning an “F” grade for its COVID response in a 50-state analysis by the Prison Policy Initiative, an independent research and advocacy organization that studies mass incarceration. Florida prisons lost 221 inmates to COVID, […]