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Mike Miller

Some lawmakers bowing out of Special Session

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(Originally published Tuesday, June 6, 2017) At least eight House members and one senator won’t be attending some or all of this week’s Special Session, set for Wednesday-Friday.  The June meeting is conflicting with some lawmakers’ plans, including one whose brother is getting married out of state. Below is a list, as of Tuesday afternoon, of lawmakers asking for and receiving excused absences for part or all of the three-day session, with reasons given: — Rep. Bruce Antone, an Orlando…

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With weeks left in Session, small-business group urges fracking ban

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With just over two weeks left in Florida’s regular Legislative Session, a group of over 100 members of the business community released a statement Wednesday indicating support for a statewide fracking ban. “If something goes wrong, I know that will have an impact on us,” said Mark Amis, the owner of Little Tommie’s Tiki located at Boca Ciega Bay in Gulfport. “I just don’t think that we should be spending the amount of money we’re going to spend to get those…

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Communications technologies, consumer choices, could end-run taxation

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Taxes that Florida and many local governments collect on phone, cable and other communication services are in steady decline for the same reasons as land-line telephones: people are finding different, better, and cheaper ways to consumer communications. An explosion in popularity of Internet video services such as Netflix and Hulu, combined with other technology and consumer choice advances, and the consequential falling telecommunication prices, are antiquating Florida’s communication services tax structure. And so the Florida House Ways and Means Committee, briefed on the…

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Dana Young, environmentalists still holds hope for fracking ban in 2017

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House members now say the possibility of a fracking ban is dead for the 2017 Legislative Session. Sen. Dana Young thinks it’s premature to administer last rites, at least just yet. “You never say never, but now we’re saying it looks like that will be next year,”  Rep. Mike Miller, an Orlando Republican, told the Naples Daily News about his bill (HB 451) as the first month of Session ended this week. The reason for the impasse is the desire by some…

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Republicans lead fight to ban fracking in Florida

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Citing unresolved health concerns, Florida lawmakers are weighing the fate of a measure that would ban fracking across the state. Legislators are pushing the bill to safeguard Florida’s clean water supply, which is the drinking water source for 90 percent of Floridians and a major player in the state’s economy, from agriculture to tourism. If passed, the bill would effectively ban any type of well stimulation technique statewide. That includes fracking — a practice that requires pumping huge volumes of…

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Latest on the legislative staffing merry-go-round

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With a tip of the hat to LobbyTools, here are the latest movements – both on and off – of the legislative merry-go-round. On: House Health Care Appropriations Subcommittee has brought on budget analyst Bryan Mielke, formerly a legislative assistant for Sebring Republican Rep. Cary Pigman. On: Brandon Miller is replacing Mielke as Pigman’s legislative assistant. On: Daniel Brackett is a new attorney for the House Careers & Competition Subcommittee. On: Angelique Rinaldi is the new legislative assistant for Port Orange…

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Latest on the legislative staffing merry-go-round

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With a tip of the hat to LobbyTools, here are the latest movements – both on and off – of the legislative merry-go-round. On and off: Tiffany Harrington has replaced Heather Williamson as House staff director of the Joint Select Committee on Collective Bargaining. On: Teri Cariota, formerly an aide to former Rep. Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda, is now a legislative assistant to Miami Democratic Rep. Roy Hardemon. On: Venusmia Lovely, formerly an aide to Sen. Dwight Bullard, is also a district…

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