LIST: New Florida state laws take effect July 1

From WFLA: “The new laws include Florida’s $82 billion budget, along with a package offering $91.6 million in tax breaks during the upcoming year. Commercial delivery by drones, new rules for Uber and Lyft, boat docking and expressing religious beliefs at schools … Click here to read more

Final passage of Negron Bill: Plan to reduce Lake O discharges heads to Gov Scott

Senate Bill 10, Water Resources, by Senator Rob Bradley (R-Fleming Island) saw final passage in both the Florida Senate and the Florida House of Representatives today. The legislation will now be sent to Florida Governor Rick Scott. Senate Bill 10 authorizes a significant increase in southern water storage to further the goal of reducing and eventually eliminating harmful discharges from Lake Okeechobee, a priority of Senate President Joe Negron (R-Stuart) … Click here to read more

Request denied for federal state of emergency because of toxic algae

“‘It’s unfortunate President Barack Obama has deemed Florida’s Treasure Coast worthy enough to play golf in, but not important enough to provide assistance to the Floridians dealing with the ongoing algae bloom crisis and poor water quality conditions,” Florida Senator Marco Rubio (R) said Saturday in a prepared release,’ according to TCPalm … Click here to read more

Martin County extends local state of emergency a 3rd week due to toxic algae

From WPTV: “Martin County said it is extending a local state of emergency for a third week due to toxic algae. The decision allows the government to streamline efforts to finance projects that could remedy the algae situation. … Click here to read more

Carl Hiaasen: Enjoy your vacation on Playa Guacamole

From Carl Hiaasen in The Miami Herald: “Hardest hit is Martin County, on the Treasure Coast, where scummy Lake O water has poured into the saltwater estuary from the St. Lucie River. Gov. Rick Scott has reacted with unwavering impotence …He’ll be running for the Senate in two years and desperately wants not to be tagged as Governor Algae … Click here to read more

Highlights of 159 new laws that take effect July 1

From The Palm Beach Post: “Starting Friday, clergy who don’t want to marry same-sex couples will have state backing for their beliefs, high school students will have more choice over where they play sports or study, and local governments won’t be able to regulate the use of Styrofoam containers.Those are among the 159 new laws … Click here to read more

Governor adds Lee and Palm Beach counties to Martin/St. Lucie state of emergency over algae

From The Palm Beach Post: “Gov. Rick Scott has expanded a state of emergency already issued for Martin and St. Lucie counties because of an algae bloom to include Lee and Palm Beach counties … Click here to read more

Governor declares state of emergency in St. Lucie and Martin Counties following algal blooms

Today, Governor Rick Scott issued Executive Order 16-155 declaring a state of emergency in Martin and St. Lucie Counties following the presence of algal blooms in local waterways. The Executive Order will allow state and local governmental agencies to take swift action to mitigate the spread of algal blooms in the St. Lucie and Caloosahatchee estuaries by redirecting the flow of water in and out of Lake Okeechobee. … Click here to read more

WPTV video: Gov. Scott proposes $5B in Everglades restoration funding

Tuesday, Governor Rick Scott pledged 5 billion-dollars, 150-million this year, for Everglades restoration. “We need to continue to finish projects, we need to continue to work on storage. We don’t want to have the problems we had two years ago … Click here to read more

Gov. Scott’s efforts applauded by commissioners during his visit to Martin County

From The Sunshine State News: Martin County Commissioner Sarah Heard expressed her support for Scott’s agenda, especially his commitment to the Indian River: “On behalf of the Martin County Board of County Commissioners, I applaud Gov. Scott for his continued efforts toward completion of the Indian River Lagoon-South restoration project … Click here to read more

In Palm City, Gov. Scott unveils environmental plan

The Tampa Bay Times reports that Gov. Rick Scott unveiled a plan for how he will improve Florida’s environment if voters give him four more years in office. Speaking before Monday’s Martin County Chamber of Commerce breakfast meeting at Martin Downs Golf Club in Palm City … Click here to read more