Florida Legislature 2023

Will 20 more years have to pass until another woman leads the Florida Legislature?

BY: - September 19, 2023

Florida is ahead of most other states when it comes to the number of women in its Legislature, but, for the next two years, both chambers will go back to the status quo of male leadership. In addition, a Phoenix analysis of top leadership positions in legislative committees show that few women get to be […]

Inside the new Classic Learning Test: Why are FL conservatives pushing for it, and what’s on it?

BY: - September 8, 2023

In a national climate where there are growing calls to abolish college admissions tests such as the SAT and ACT, Florida is set to add an alternative exam: the Classic Learning Test — a three-section exam on verbal reasoning, grammar and writing, and quantitative reasoning, or math, that has been pushed by conservative politicians and […]

Will a new FL Black history museum be factual and truthful, or could politics derail the project?

BY: - August 29, 2023

Amid tensions over a stream of incidents — from controversial academics over slavery, NAACP travel advisories and the loss of a Black congressional district to the hate-crime killings of Black people in Jacksonville — a new task force is trying to create a statewide Florida Museum of Black History. But it’s not certain yet if […]

Federal judge denies request to block law limiting Chinese land ownership in Florida

BY: - August 17, 2023

A Florida federal judge has denied a request by four Chinese citizens and a real estate brokerage to block implementation of a new state law that bans certain Chinese citizens from purchasing property in Florida. Judge Allen Winsor of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida wrote in his order on Thursday […]

Another state is removed from list of ‘invalid’ driver licenses recognized by Florida

BY: - August 3, 2023

A little over a month ago, the state Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles listed five out-of-state driver licenses issued to undocumented immigrants that would no longer be recognized by law enforcement in Florida – a provision of the sweeping anti-immigration bill that went into law July 1. That list now is down to […]

As DeSantis faces cash crunch, he appears as a ‘special guest’ at his own campaign events

BY: - July 27, 2023

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis was back on the presidential campaign trail in Iowa on a bus tour this week, but those events were not organized or funded by his regular campaign. Instead, a federal super PAC called Never Back Down handled the event featuring DeSantis as a “special guest.” But why is he listed as […]

With FL’s immigration law set to start July 1, critics say it will impact non-immigrants as well

BY: - June 28, 2023

Florida’s sweeping anti-immigration bill is set to go into effect this Saturday, and critics of the law warned Wednesday that it will impact far more than the undocumented immigrant population. “Floridians will see higher costs for our groceries due to worker shortages, longer waits at restaurants, struggles to keep employees, less housing options as construction […]

More states use taxpayer dollars to help people pay for private school

BY: - June 16, 2023

In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, during which parents and educators reevaluated their relationship with public schools, lawmakers across the country have eagerly embraced state-funded voucher programs, giving public money to students to attend private schools. So far this year, at least 10 states have implemented or expanded programs for vouchers and other state […]

Chinese citizens file emergency motion to block FL law; say they’ll face financial harms and stigma

BY: - June 7, 2023

Attorneys for a group of Chinese citizens who live and work in Florida have filed an emergency motion in federal court to block a new law that bans Chinese nationals from purchasing property near military installations or critical infrastructure facilities. The Chinese citizens in the lawsuit say they will experience a constitutional injury, unwarranted stigma […]

Turkey, pork, bringing home the bacon: 1,540 pet projects slipped into 2023-24 state budget

BY: - June 6, 2023

When the Florida Legislature approved a $117 billion state budget in May, 1,540 local projects slipped into the massive document, from museums, soccer and football fields, and after school programs to libraries and community centers, water main projects and wastewater treatment facilities – often with big price tags. The record number of local projects, often […]

U.S. judge blocks Florida’s ban on gender-affirming care for minors

BY: - June 6, 2023

A federal judge in Tallahassee has blocked a state ban on administration of gender-affirming therapies, including puberty blockers, hormone therapies, or surgery, for any patient under the age of 18. The order also addresses legislation recently signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis (SB 254) that codifies Florida state Board of Medicine and Osteopathic Medicine rules blocking […]

Citizens in Clearwater attend town-hall to fight book bans in Florida

BY: - June 1, 2023

Allowing kids to have access to books and information is worth fighting for. That was the theme of a public teach-in on the removal of books in public schools in Florida held Wednesday night in Clearwater by the Florida Freedom to Read Project, PEN America, the League of Women Voters of North Pinellas County, and […]