Under warnings about past failures, FL lawmakers launch redistricting efforts

BY: - September 20, 2021

A legislative process that will affect elections in Florida for years to come began Monday under the shadow of a history lesson on what not to do. Florida Senate Redistricting Committee Chair Ray Rodrigues, a Lee County Republican, opened the inaugural meeting with a review of the wrongdoings committed 10 years ago, in the Legislature’s […]

$300 supplement for unemployed set to expire Saturday; advocates ask that DeSantis give an extension

BY: - June 23, 2021

Though a $300 per week federal unemployment supplement expires this Saturday, the Florida AFL-CIO and other advocates are calling on Gov. Ron DeSantis to keep the supplement going as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. On Thursday, the union plans to deliver a petition of more than 6,000 signatures to DeSantis’ office — signatures from the AFL-CIO, […]

On Tax Day 2021, ‘People’s Budget’ calls for tax reform to help struggling Floridians

BY: - May 17, 2021

A progressive coalition of workers, retirees, unions, social-service advocates, small business owners, and policy experts issued reports condemning tax policies that they say are hard on working-class Floridians and the poor. The “People’s Budget Florida,” released Monday on Tax Day 2021, calls for more equitable tax policy in Florida in order to provide more funding […]

labor union photo

House moves $1B online sales tax giveaway for business owners a step closer to becoming law

BY: - April 8, 2021

Legislation extending collection of the state sales tax on online purchases — and using the $1 billion it would raise to spare businesses an increase in the tax they pay to support the unemployment compensation system — cleared the House Thursday. The 93-24 vote sent the legislation (SB 50) to the Senate, which must accept […]

FL Legislature 2021: Working families caught between economic crisis and pandemic

BY: - February 10, 2021

The least-fortunate of Florida’s working families are in trouble, in ways that Florida lawmakers have never faced before. Few could have imagined the coronavirus pandemic would persist for over a year, with hundreds of thousands of Floridians still, or again, unemployed and struggling. Hundreds of thousands are at risk of being disconnected from utilities and/or […]

Unions hope workplace safety rules are coming soon: ‘Some of these workplaces are atrocious’

BY: - January 27, 2021

While top Florida lawmakers fast-track legislation to shield employers from COVID-19 lawsuits, unions that represent many of Florida’s 10 million workers say employees need their own protections on the job. “Some of these workplaces are atrocious. They’re not doing anything,” said Rebecca Reindel, national safety and health director with the AFL-CIO. “We’re 10 months into […]

FL’s jobless still waiting for new $300 federal supplement; work-search waiver extended

BY: - September 8, 2020

Update: At 5:46 p.m. Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office announced that “eligible Floridians should anticipate receiving benefits from the LWA [Lost Wages Assistance] program this week.” The announcement says $300 payments will be issued for weeks ending Aug. 1, Aug. 8 and Aug. 15. Florida signed up for a short-term $300 weekly federal supplement retroactive […]

COVID primary: Some crowded races, dark money, and a push for women candidates

BY: - August 17, 2020

Floridians go to the polls on Tuesday in the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic to cast votes in party primaries for state and local offices. Scratch that: Florida doesn’t really have election day anymore — it’s more of a multi-week election episode. Early in-person voting began on Aug. 3, and local supervisors of election began […]

FL seniors fear Trump’s payroll-tax cut could threaten Social Security

BY: - August 11, 2020

With billions of dollars of Social Security benefits flowing into Florida yearly, seniors are concerned about a presidential order to suspend payroll taxes that fund the social program. Dave Bruns, a spokesman for AARP Florida, said he has taken many calls in the last two days from seniors worried about the long-term viability of Social […]

Workers protest end of $600 unemployment supplement; jobless in FL stuck with lowest benefit in nation

BY: - July 31, 2020

Workers in Miami protested Friday against losing federal Unemployment Insurance benefits of $600 weekly that jobless people were receiving in the pandemic economy due to massive job losses. The four-month-old supplement ended Friday, with partisan fighting in Congress failing to create a replacement. The U.S. Department of Labor reports nearly 32 million Americans are out […]

GOP unemployment proposal: Cut the $600 supplement and set new formula — for better or worse

BY: - July 23, 2020

With a $600-a-week federal unemployment supplement for the jobless ending in days, U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a televised interview Thursday that the White House wants a new formula for calculating jobless benefits during COVID-19. The nation’s largest union, the AFL-CIO, predicts that the new approach, if approved, would reduce benefits for many […]

As a $600 lifeline wanes, FL’s jobless look to Congress: ‘Are they going to turn their backs on us?’

BY: - July 22, 2020

Behind the elaborate stage costumes that helped make The Lion King and Aladdin famous is Victoria Olson, a costume maker for theatrical productions for over 40 years. She worked on Broadway, and since moving to Florida has staged productions in Broward County’s most renowned venues. She lives in Fort Lauderdale. Now she’s jobless since theaters […]