Capitol Preview: What to expect (the rest of) this week in Florida politics

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Put down that phone and drive. After years of debate, Gov. Rick Scott will sign a bill Tuesday that bans texting while driving. 

Scott also will sign a measure Tuesday that seeks to boost Everglades restoration. Meanwhile, state agencies will hold hearings on issues such as insurance and utility rates.

TUESDAY

SCOTT TO SIGN EVERGLADES BILL: Gov. Rick Scott will hold a ceremony to sign a bill (HB 7065) that is designed to boost Everglades restoration efforts. (Tuesday, 9:30 a.m., Pine Jog Environmental Education Center, 6301 Summit Blvd., West Palm Beach.)

BAN ON TEXTING WHILE DRIVING TO BECOME LAW: Gov. Rick Scott will sign a bill (SB 52) that would ban texting while driving. The bill has some exceptions, such allowing texting while motorists are stopped, such as at traffic lights. (Tuesday, 1 p.m., Alonzo and Tracy Mourning Senior High School, 2601 NE 151st St., Miami.)

MEDICAID ISSUES DISCUSSED: The state Medical Care Advisory Committee, a panel that reviews issues related to the Medicaid program, will meet. (Tuesday, 1 p.m., Agency for Health Care Administration, 2727 Mahan Dr., Tallahassee.)

HEARING ON MEDS-AD RENEWAL: The Agency for Health Care Administration will hold a hearing as part of an effort to renew federal approval of what is known as the “MEDS-AD” program in Medicaid. (Tuesday, 1 p.m., Agency for Health Care Administration, 2727 Mahan Dr., Tallahassee.) 

EDUCATION SUMMIT: The Florida Sterling Council will hold an education summit that will look at issues facing Florida’s schools, universities and communities. Among the expected speakers are state Sen. Bill Montford, D-Tallahassee; University of South Florida President Judy Genshaft; Glenn Good, dean of the University of Florida College of Education; and Jon Schnur, a former education advisor to President Obama and President Clinton. (Tuesday, 7:30 a.m, JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, Orlando.)

HEALTH CARE SYMPOSIUM: The Florida Sterling Council will hold a symposium looking at issues in the U.S. health-care system. Among the expected speakers are state Rep. Gayle Harrell, R-Stuart, chairwoman of the House Healthy Families Subcommittee; Daryl Tol, president of Florida Hospital Memorial Medical Center; and Henry Chueh of Harvard Medical School. (Tuesday, 8:30 a.m., JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, Orlando.)

JUVENILE JUSTICE REFORMS: The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice will hold its 12th town hall meeting on proposed reforms to the juvenile justice system. (Tuesday, 6 p.m. Dr. Carrie D. Robinson Community Center, 2990 Edison Avenue, Fort Myers.)

WEDNESDAY

FIRED TROOPER CASE HEARD: The state Public Employees Relations Commission is scheduled to hold a hearing in the case of Charles Swindle, a fired Florida Highway Patrol trooper who contends that state lawmakers were given special treatment when pulled over for speeding. (Wednesday, 9 a.m., Building 4050, Capital Circle Office Center, Tallahassee.)

CONFERENCE ON CHILDREN’S ISSUES: The Florida Department of Children and Families and other organizations will take part in a three-day conference aimed at helping children and families be successful. The event is called, “Conference by the Bay: Partners in Progress.” (Wednesday, 8 a.m., Florida State University, Panama City Campus, 4750 Collegiate Dr., Panama City.)

CITIZENS DEPOPULATION: The Citizens Property Insurance Corp. Depopulation Committee is scheduled to hold a meeting at the Capitol. The teleconference phone number: 855-312-8651. Participant Code: 4458606638# (Wednesday, 1 p.m., 212 Knott Building, the Capitol.)

TECO RATE HIKE DISCUSSED: The Florida Public Service Commission will hold a public hearing about a proposal by Tampa Electric Co. to increase base electric rates. The hearing is part of a months-long review process of the proposal. (Wednesday, 6 p.m., Hillsborough Community College/Dale Mabry Campus, Student Services Auditorium — DSTU Building, 4001 West Tampa Bay Blvd., Tampa.)

THURSDAY

FIDELITY NATIONAL RATE HIKE PROBED: The state Office of Insurance Regulation is scheduled to hold a hearing on a proposal by Fidelity National Property & Casualty Insurance Co. to increase homeowners rates by an average of 28.1 percent. (Thursday, 9 a.m., Larson Building, 200 East Gaines St., Tallahassee.)

TECO RATE HIKE DISCUSSED: The Florida Public Service Commission will hold a public hearing about a proposal by Tampa Electric Co. to increase base electric rates. The hearing is part of a months-long review process of the proposal. (Thursday, 10 a.m., Chain of Lakes Complex — Poolside Room, 210 Cypress Gardens Blvd., Winter Haven.)

STEM FORUM: The Florida Sterling Council will hold a forum about preparing students for manufacturing and other science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) related jobs. Speakers are expected to include officials from numerous businesses, schools and colleges. (Thursday, 8:30 a.m., JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, 4040 Central Florida Parkway, Orlando.)

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.