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Aliki Moncrief

DEP seeks $50M for Florida Forever

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

A request is on the desk of Gov. Rick Scott to replenish the state’s most prominent land-preservation fund. The Department of Environmental Protection‘s wish list for the 2018-2019 fiscal year—presented to Scott last week as the governor’s office crafts budget recommendations for the Legislature—includes $50 million for the Florida Forever program.

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Budget deal includes no money for Florida Forever

in 2017 by

The Senate accepted the House offer on the agriculture and natural resources portion of the budget, agreeing not to set aside any money for Florida Forever in 2017-18. The $3.6 billion plan zeros out funding for land acquisition. Sen. Rob Bradley said the budget includes $13.3 million — $5 million of which is recurring dollars — for the St. Johns River and Keystone Heights Lake. Bradley called it a “huge win for the region and particularly the Keystone Heights lake,” saying…

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No surprise — Sierra Club endorses Darden Rice re-election to St. Pete City Council

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

As Earth Day approaches this weekend, Darden Rice is rolling out endorsements from two environmental organizations for her re-election bid in St. Petersburg City Council District 4  — Florida Conservation Voters and (unsurprisingly) the Sierra Club, where she had previously worked. “We’re proud to endorse one of our own,” said David Harbeitner, President of the Suncoast Chapter of the Sierra Club. “Darden has a long history of environmental activism and a strong commitment to standing up for what is right.…

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Capitol Reax: Tax cuts, certificates of need, whiskey and Wheaties, fracking

in Statewide by

Gov. Rick Scott proposed $618 million in tax cuts this week, which included four back to school holidays and reducing the commercial lease tax. “Governor Scott’s ‘Fighting for Florida’s Future’ tax package includes a number of cuts which will significantly support Florida’s retailers, including a reduction in the business rent tax, cutting the business tax and including an expanded back-to-school sales tax holiday among others. FRF is excited about what the Governor’s tax cut package will mean for growing Sunshine…

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Dana Young and Darryl Rouson set to start new careers in Florida Senate

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

At Tuesday’s Organization Session in Tallahassee, all 40 state senators elected earlier this month will take their oath in office. Both senators representing Hillsborough County, Darryl Rouson and Dana Young, are new to the job, though not to the Legislature. Young returns to Tallahassee having fulfilled her goal of advancing into the Senate after six years in the Florida House. The newly created state Senate District 18 she now represents includes more than half of the same boundaries of her House District 60 seat, and she…

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Endorsement Watch: Florida Retail Federation, Florida Conservation Voters, NRA issue endorsements

in Statewide by

With just a few weeks until the election, organizations across the state are rolling out endorsements for state and federal candidates. Several organizations — the Florida Retail Federation, Florida Conservation Voters, and the NRA Political Victory Fund — issued endorsements. — Neal Dunn has received the backing of the NRA Political Victory Fund. “As a staunch supporter and defender of the Second Amendment and the right to bear arms, I am proud to have been endorsed by, and received an AQ…

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Amendment 4 backers want voters to see the light

in Statewide/Top Headlines by

Using a favorite joke, state Sen. Jeff Brandes said he had brought together “the Baptists and the bootleggers” in support of his proposed solar-energy constitutional amendment. Brandes, a St. Petersburg Republican, led a news conference Thursday at Tallahassee’s Florida Press Center. “This is something Republicans and Democrats have come together on,” he told reporters. “It’s about our environment; it’s about jobs … businesses, residents and tourists will all benefit.” Florida for Solar, Inc., the committee behind Amendment 4, is doing a…

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