Culture & Society

No, you can’t own a pet meerkat, state says

BY: - February 22, 2019

State wildlife officials, already battling invasive exotic pests like Burmese pythons and iguanas that run rampant in South Florida, just put out a list of animals people are now banned from owning because the critters pose a high risk of getting loose and invading Florida wildlands. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is prohibiting […]

pills

Gov. DeSantis and Trump claim they’ll import cheaper Canadian prescription drugs to Florida

BY: - February 22, 2019

Nobody likes the high cost of prescription drugs. Gov. Ron DeSantis says he wants to do something about it. But it could be a big reach for the rookie Republican governor. He is trying to accomplish something that no other state has ever done. In an announcement at the sprawling retirement community of The Villages […]

Catholic school

An even playing field? Kids getting vouchers for private school can skip the litany of state exams in Florida

BY: - February 22, 2019

Thousands of public school students in Florida will take state exams this spring in reading, writing, math, science and social studies, and the state will publish the results — regardless of whether scores are glowing or embarrassing. That won’t happen at private schools. Students who get “scholarships” or vouchers to attend private schools with public […]

picture of doors and ceiling

Another school voucher proposal, this time from Senate Republicans

BY: - February 21, 2019

A week after Gov. Ron DeSantis proposed a new “Florida Equal Opportunity Scholarship Program,” key Senate Republicans announced their own voucher plan on Thursday, rattling Democrats who oppose using public dollars for private school vouchers. The Senate Republican proposal is called the “Family Empowerment Scholarship.” The money for the scholarships, or vouchers, will come out […]

COMMENTARY

What if U.S. Supreme Court overturns landmark Roe vs. Wade?

BY: - February 21, 2019

Let’s look ahead. What if the landmark Roe v. Wade decision is gutted or overturned? My first thoughts go to my teen daughter, Caroline; my nieces, Haley and Isabelle; and all their girlfriends. The recent ideological shift on the U.S. Supreme Court has put many of us on high alert, ready for a fight we […]

Lively Tech welder

Not all students go to college: Gov. DeSantis wants kids to get into career tech programs and get good jobs

BY: - February 20, 2019

During the campaign season, then-candidates Ron DeSantis and Andrew Gillum found common ground: Expanding career and technical education programs that can prepare kids for work without getting a four-year college degree. Now as governor, DeSantis is following through on some of his career tech goals. DeSantis recommended about $507-million for “workforce education” in his proposed […]

right whales

Groups ask court to block Trump-issued permits to harm thousands of Atlantic marine creatures

BY: - February 20, 2019

Saying that the Trump administration’s approval for five corporations to conduct loud underwater blasting to find oil and gas along the Atlantic seaboard will “irreparably harm marine species from tiny zooplankton … to the great whales,” environmental groups went to federal court today seeking an injunction to stop the permits. The National Marine Fisheries Service […]

COMMENTARY

Now in Washington, multimillionaire Rick Scott still out there hustling for more cold cash

BY: - February 20, 2019

No doubt you’ve been wondering whatever became of Rick Scott, the fellow who wrested the title of Worst Governor Ever from Sidney J. Catts  soon after he was elected in 2010. Scott was last seen in Tallahassee shortly after the November midterms squealing like an outraged tapir when his lead over incumbent Florida senator Bill […]

Medicaid patients who need to get to the doctor: There should be an app for that, lawmaker says

BY: - February 20, 2019

It’s often a hassle getting to a doctor’s appointment and back in a timely way. It’s even worse if you’re sick and poor. You might not have a car. Your medical condition might prevent you from driving. It’s a dilemma faced by many of the 3.87 million Floridians who rely on Medicaid, the state-federal health […]

Helping addicts survive: FL lawmakers advance statewide needle exchange program

BY: - February 19, 2019

Five Florida cities made the top ten list for new U.S. HIV cases in 2016, the most recent year of data analyzed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That distinction makes the time ripe for Florida to expand statewide a needle-exchange pilot program first introduced in Miami-Dade County four years ago, says state […]

Schools

DeSantis plan: FL families could be well over poverty threshold and still get public dollars for private school

BY: - February 19, 2019

Gov. Ron DeSantis’s proposed school voucher expansion across Florida is not targeted specifically for poor families – which have historically been beneficiaries of the programs that allow students to attend private schools with public dollars. New details emerging about the governor’s “Equal Opportunity Scholarship Program” — proposed last week– show students could be eligible for […]

Florida Immigrant Coalition

Republicans pushing hard-line anti-immigration measures in Legislature

BY: - February 19, 2019

With a national backdrop of anti-immigrant fervor whipped up by President Trump, Florida Republicans are intent on passing laws in the upcoming 2019 legislative session to crack down on undocumented immigrants. They’ve tried and failed to pass tougher laws before, but this year they think they’ll be successful, and Gov. Ron DeSantis is a supporter. […]