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2016 legislative session - page 3

Rick Scott signs raft of 33 bills into law

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A day after signing nine bills into law on Wednesday, Gov. Rick Scott gave final approval to 33 bills passed during the 2016 Legislative Session late Thursday morning. The raft of newly enacted legislation includes HB 93 by Democratic Rep. Shevrin Jones, which requires Florida law enforcement agencies to “establish policies and procedures regarding the use” of police body cameras. The bill does not require all police to actually use the cameras, but it does appear it could hasten the arrival of police body cameras…

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Jet fuel tax changes set to become law July 1, barring unlikely veto

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The future of Florida’s aviation fuel taxation regime is set for a major overhaul on July 1, if Gov. Rick Scott signs an omnibus tax bill into law as expected. For the state’s largest air carriers, that’s a good thing indeed. The bill removes exemptions to the state’s jet fuel tax, which currently apply to once-upstart carriers like Southwest Airlines and JetBlue beginning in 2018. It would also lower the overall rate for all carriers from 6.9 percent to 4.23 percent, in order to keep the change “revenue neutral,”…

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Florida Legislature eases transfer rules for high-school athletes

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The state’s oversight panel for public high-school athletics can breathe a collective sigh of relief after this past legislative session. Conservative lawmakers have had the Florida High School Athletics Association in their crosshairs for the last five years. They’ve said constituents have long complained about their children not being able to play certain sports because of strict transfer rules. In fact, some bills filed last year would have eliminated the organization, which oversees 32 male and female high-school sports played by 285,000 Florida…

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Rick Scott signs 9 bills into law

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Gov. Rick Scott continued a flurry of post-Legislative Session activity Wednesday morning, signing nine bills passed during the 2016 lawmaking period into state law. The highest-profile bills meeting the governor’s approval include a requirement that Florida law enforcement test all rape kits within 120 days of their submission, the creation of a needle exchange pilot program in Miami, and a provision allowing judges more discretion when it comes to deciding the custody of adopted children. The full list of laws enacted on…

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Cohabitation repeal, All Aboard Florida beer bill among the 20 bills sent to Rick Scott on Tuesday

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The stack bills on Gov. Rick Scott’s desk just keeps getting higher. The Florida Legislature sent 20 bills — including ones to repeal the state’s ban on cohabitation, legislation to allow All Aboard Florida riders to drink beer on trains and a bill to create the Florida Holocaust Memorial — to Scott on Tuesday. The Naples Republican now has until April 6 to act on the legislation. Among the proposal now on the governor’s desk is a bill (SB 498)…

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Rick Scott signs Ag Department changes into law

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Florida said hello to its new official state honey – tupelo, of course – when Gov. Rick Scott signed into law a bill to make myriad tweaks to the state’s Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services on Wednesday. HB 7007, which originated in the House sponsored by Rep. Jake Raburn and the Agriculture & Natural Resources Subcommittee, is an omnibus package that makes more than a dozen changes to state law regarding the Ag Department. Besides elevating tupelo honey to the level of official…

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Rick Scott says he will veto more than $250 million from state budget

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Florida Gov. Rick Scott took a pre-emptive strike Tuesday, saying he plans to veto more than $250 million in projects when lawmakers send him the fiscal 2016-17 budget. The move comes just days after the Legislature voted overwhelmingly — 40-0 in the Senate and 119-1 in the House — to approve the $82.3 billion spending plan. The proposal hasn’t officially been sent to Scott for his signature and vetoes. “I will be signing this budget into law as soon as the…

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