Life and politics from the Sunshine State's best city

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Gary Fineout

Gary Fineout has 257 articles published.

Elderly deaths: Call for generators in Florida nursing homes

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After 11 nursing home residents died in the sweltering heat of hurricane-induced power outages, Florida’s nursing home industry is now on a collision course with Gov. Rick Scott.

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Power is back on in Florida, but utilities still under fire

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

After a massive restoration effort, most of Florida has power 10 days after Hurricane Irma knocked out electricity to nearly two-thirds of the state, mostly because of improvements made to the power grid since Hurricane Wilma 12 years ago. But that may do little to stem a growing backlash over the widespread outages that caused misery across the state and sparked sharp criticism from residents and elected officials. One top utility official apologized this week for how long it took…

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Top Florida home insurer, Citizens Insurance, could face big hit from Irma

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A decade-long lucky streak of decent weather that helped rescue one of Florida’s biggest home insurers from collapse could come to a wet, violent end if predictions about Hurricane Irma prove true. The state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp. is strong enough to absorb the blow from the monster storm, industry experts say, but all the new claims could punch a hole in its finances, possibly leading to higher premiums in future years.

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Take it to court: Florida Senate sued over doomed website

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Florida taxpayers have already spent $5 million on a state budget website that never went public. Now litigation over the failed project could cost another $200,000. The Florida Senate hired a Tallahassee-based contractor six years ago to create the website to help the public understand the state budget. Legislative officials say it didn’t work as intended and never went online.

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Rick Scott wants tax measure on next year’s ballot

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Following the lead of several other states, Gov. Rick Scott wants to make it harder for state legislators to raise taxes or fees. Scott on Monday said he wants to put a constitutional amendment on next year’s ballot that would require any tax or fee hikes to be approved by a supermajority of the Florida Legislature.

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Florida’s cost for losing lawsuits keeps growing

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Florida’s price tag for losing legal battles – which has included courtroom fights over drug testing, voting rights and gay marriage – continues to grow under Gov. Rick Scott. Scott recently agreed to pay $1.1 million to cover the legal bills of physicians and medical organizations in their successful challenge of a law that restricted doctors’ ability to talk to patients about guns. The law had been pushed through the Florida Legislature at the urging of the National Rifle Association.

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