Local leaders fight against proposed increase in Florida homestead exemption from $50K to $75K

From WPTV: “Treasure Coast government officials met Monday in Fort Pierce to voice their concern over a proposal in the Florida Legislature to increase the homestead exemption from $50,000 to $75,000. Martin County could lose $8 million annually if the tax cut is passed by voters in 2018 … Click here to read more

‘Sexy Beaches:’ FL legislature’s public relations war on tourism marketing, business development

From The Miami Herald: “What started out as a disagreement over taxpayers footing the bill for a version of Pitbull’s ‘Sexy Beaches’ video is now turning into a full-blown public relations war between Republican Gov. Rick Scott and the GOP-controlled Florida House. … Click here to read more

Senate president Joe Negron of Stuart steps down from job at law firm

WPTV reports that Senate President Joe Negron says he is resigning from his law firm to make sure he has no potential conflicts of interest. Negron has been working at the Gunster law firm, a large corporate firm that lobbies the Florida Legislature … Click here to read more

Associated Press: A look at bills that passed and died in Florida this year

“The Legislature passed about 275 bills during the 2016 session that ended Friday. That means about 1,600 bills died. Here’s a look at some that succeeded and some that failed. Winners include: … Click here to read more

Four bills ready for vote on day one of the Legislature

From The Sun-Sentinel: “Top priorities — a comprehensive water policy for the House, a pathway to independence for disabled children in the Senate — could be sent off for the governor’s signature within days of the session’s start. The session, and the fireworks, begin January 12 … Click here to read more

PBPost: Legislators apologize throughout Florida for session ‘dysfunction’

“While leaders of the Florida House and Senate continue to clash publicly over redistricting, many rank-and-file legislators are making appearances around the state bearing a red-faced message to voters…At the same breakfast meeting where State Senator Joe Negron (R-Stuart) and US Representative Patrick Rooney (D-FL18) … Click here to read more

Florida Legislature passes 130 new laws, many in effect as of July 1

From The Palm Coast Observer: “The Florida Legislature passed about 130 new laws this year, many of which went into effect July 1. Among the more controversial are a 24-hour waiting period on abortions — that one has already been challenged by the American Civil Liberties Union — and the repeal of the state’s gay adoption ban. A collection of bills passed this year that have already gone into effect July 1 is listed … Click here to read more

Florida Legislature will return to Tallahassee for special session June 1-20

From The Florida Times-Union: “Approving a balanced budget is the Legislature’s only requirement each year. But the regular session ended in an impasse with the House leaving 3½ days earlier than the scheduled May 1 final day because of a fight with the Senate over Medicaid expansion … Click here to read more

Florida’s Legislature in chaos: House adjourns abruptly, ‘impasse is insurmountable’

From The Miami Herald: “Florida’s Legislature collapsed into chaos Tuesday as the House unilaterally ended the annual session with more than three days left, leaving dozens of major bills dead and escalating tensions between the House and Senate over their healthcare stalemate … Click here to read more

New Florida laws: Guns, health care, education highlight new laws taking effect July 1

WPTV reports that new laws that take effect July 1 range from the “Florida GI Bill”, which is intended to make Florida the most military-friendly state in the nation, to lowering college costs and banning the sale of electronic cigarettes to minors. … Click here to read more