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Solar Amendment 1 committee takes in another $3.5M, now at $25M raised

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The committee backing Amendment 1 took in $3.5 million in contributions last week, including another $3 million from utility companies. Consumers for Smart Solar received $2 million from Florida Power & Light, $1 million from Duke Energy, and $250,000 each from conservative retirement group the 60 Plus Association and from a group called “Let’s Preserve the American Dream.” Consumers has now raised more than $25 million this cycle, with more than $20 million of that money coming from the state’s…

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Everglades Foundation takes its NowOrNeverglades tour to Florida roads

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With algae blooms, the future health of the Everglades, $1.2 billion in state doc stamp tax money, an enormous reservoir project, entrenched sugar interests, a heretofore dormant Florida constitutional amendment, the united opinion of more than 200 scientists, and a recalcitrant — but changing — political environment, a lot is riding on the NowOrNeverglades bus touring Florida this month. The bus, a project of the Everglades Foundation, visited Orlando Thursday on the second day of its 12-day, 20-city tour of…

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December hearing set for environmental Amendment 1 lawsuit

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A pivotal hearing in a lawsuit over the state’s environmental funding is coming up in December. Lawyers for the Legislature and environmental advocacy groups are set to argue over a summary judgment motion Dec. 5 before Circuit Judge Charles W. Dodson in Tallahassee. Granting such motions allows parties to win a case without a trial. Florida Wildlife Federation, Sierra Club and others had filed suit over the “Water and Land Legacy Amendment,” the constitutional change approved by voters in 2014 that mandates state spending for land…

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Jimmy Buffett encourages Floridians to vote no on solar power amendment

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Listen up, Parrotheads. Jimmy Buffett released a video weighing in on two ballot amendments over the weekend. Buffett encouraged Floridians to vote no on Amendment 1, a solar power initiative, and yes on Amendment 2, the medical marijuana initiative. “It’s obvious what’s going on,” said Buffett in the video. “Vote no on 1.” Amendment 1 is backed by the state’s major electric companies, and outlines the rules for solar power in Florida. It would put existing law dealing with the rights…

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Solar amendment backers raise another $560K, now at over $22M

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The committee backing Amendment 1 took in another $560,000 between Oct. 7 and Oct. 14, all of it from Florida Power & Light. Consumers for Smart Solar has now raised more than $22 million this cycle and had about $1.5 million of that money on hand Oct. 14. FPL has donated about $6.1 million of Consumers’ total fundraising, with another $5.7 million coming from Duke Energy, $3 million from Tampa Electric, and $2.2 million from Gulf Power Company. The utility-backed…

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5 things I think I think about today’s Tampa Bay Times

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Back before there was a FloridaPolitics.com and it was just me blogging at SaintPetersBlog.com, I would write a semi-regular screed about the Tampa Bay Times’ political coverage. This was so long ago, the Times still had St. Petersburg in its masthead. I gave up the “5 things I think I think…” column after a while because it got repetitive. (And because so many of my favorite writers — Howard Troxler, Eric Deggans, Michael Kruse —  left the newspaper). However, with 15…

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Sal Nuzzo probably lost his virginity to his Canadian girlfriend

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Put aside what you think of the utility-backed ballot solar amendment on the ballot next month. Whether you agree or not that the amendment establishes a right for consumerk to own or lease solar equipment and helps local and state governments protect consumer rights and public safety really is up to you. Instead, let’s discuss Sal Nuzzo, the policy director of the James Madison Institute captured on audiotape saying the utility industry is trying to deceive voters into supporting restrictions on solar power…

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