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Is Mike Haridopolos eyeing return to Florida Senate?

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Former state Sen. Mike Haridopolos is considering a possible return to the Florida Senate, according to two current members of the chamber’s leadership team who have discussed a possible campaign with him. The Merritt Island Republican is eyeing Senate District 17, currently held by Thad Altman, a Rockledge Republican who is term-limited. But that seat is also being sought by GOP state Reps. Debbie Mayfield of Vero Beach and Ritch Workman of Melbourne. No matter: The lawmakers who have met with Haridopolos say he is actively working to elbow Workman…

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Senate panel OKs call for “use of military force” against ISIL

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Florida lawmakers continued to dabble in foreign policy on Monday, when the Senate panel unanimously passed a bill calling for an authorization of force against Al-Qaeda and Islamic State groups in Iraq and the Levant. The Committee on Military and Veterans Affairs, Space, and Domestic Security approved SB 1710 by Sen. Greg Evers, which calls on Congress for the “authorization for the use of military force” against the groups. The bill originally called on federal lawmakers to “declare that a state of war…

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Groups upset with legislators over land conservation

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Environmental groups contend that the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature is again snubbing voters who want the state to purchase conservation land. They contend the budget proposals the Legislature is now developing violate Amendment 1, passed overwhelmingly in 2014, directing that a third of the revenue from documentary stamp taxes on real estate transactions go to buy land. “They’re basically ignoring what the public has clearly indicated it wants, not just the spirit but the clear words,” said former Gov. Bob Graham,…

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NASA, Space Coast remember Apollo 1, Challenger, Columbia disasters

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The end of January to the first day of February — starting Wednesday and running through Monday — is always a most somber time for NASA and America’s space program. Those dates mark anniversaries of three of the nation’s most visible tragedies: Apollo 1, the Space Shuttle Challenger and Columbia disasters. It also reminds us of the resilience of space agency and Florida’s Space Coast, where people took each setback personally. Every time, NASA faced fierce criticism that American heroes…

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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 – the legislative merry-go-round. Off and on: Nancy Bernier is no longer a legislative assistant for Rockledge Republican Sen. Thad Altman. She will become the new district secretary for Melbourne Republican Rep. Ritch Workman. Off: Aaron McKinney is no longer the legislative assistant for Cutler Bay Democratic Sen. Dwight Bullard. On: Shannon Cooper is Bullard’s new legislative assistant. Off: Courtney Vandenberg is no longer a legislative assistant for Clearwater Republican Sen.…

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Latest on the legislative staffing merry-go-round

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With a tip of the hat to Legislative IQ powered by LobbyTools, here are the latest movements – both on and off – of the legislative merry-go-round. Off and On: Nancy Bernier is no longer a legislative assistant for Rockledge Republican state Sen. Thad Altman. She is now the district secretary for Melbourne Republican state Rep. Ritch Workman. Off: Aaron McKinney is no longer the legislative assistant for Cutler Bay state Sen. Dwight Bullard. On: Shannon Cooper is now Bullard’s new legislative assistant. Off: Courtney Vandenberg is no…

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Latest on the legislative staffing merry-go-round

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With a tip of the hat to Legislative IQ powered by LobbyTools, here are the latest movements – both on and off – of the legislative merry-go-round. On: Bobbye Iseminger is the new senior administrative assistant for the House Select Committee on Affordable Healthcare Access. On: Jasmine Govan and Ambar Pimentel became legislative assistants for Democratic state Sen. Joseph Abruzzo of Wellington. Off: Rick Kendust is no longer legislative assistant for Republican state Sen. Thad Altman of Rockledge. Off: Jessica Crawford…

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