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Rick Scott’s veto list puts friends and foes in sharp relief

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Gov. Rick Scott denied giving consideration to his friends — or retaliating against his enemies — as he threw out more than $460 million spent by lawmakers in this year’s budget. “Absolutely not,” Scott told reporters Tuesday morning after the Tuesday Cabinet meeting concluded. But a close look at what was axed and what was not tells a different story. As lawmakers, state agencies and lobbyists wade through the governor’s hundreds of individual line-item vetoes, they would do well to…

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Settlement reached in lawsuit over firing of Florida top cop

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Gov. Rick Scott and the Cabinet are settling a lawsuit filed by media organizations and others over the firing of former Florida Department of Law Enforcement chief Gerald Bailey. The lawsuit contended that Scott and Cabinet members sidestepped the state’s Sunshine Law in the way they handled Bailey’s dismissal last year. The groups that sued Scott, which include The Associated Press, asserted that the firing should have been voted on during a public meeting, but instead the firing and the…

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Environmental Secretary Jon Steverson reapplies for his job

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Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Jon Steverson has reapplied for his job, agency staff confirmed Friday night. Before being named Secretary by Gov. Rick Scott earlier this year, Steverson served as the executive director of the Northwest Florida Management District. Steverson previously worked for DEP 2011-2012 as special counsel and acting deputy secretary for water policy before being asked by Scott to serve as secretary during the governor’s second administration. Steverson is reapplying for the post amid a controversy surrounding…

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Takeaways from Tallahassee, er, St. Augustine

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The picture to the right is of the dock in front of the beach house the Griswolds, err, the Schorsches are vacationing at this week. This was supposed to be a recuperative, post-session retreat, and while it has been an enjoyable time here in St. Augustine, it feels like just a break before the next wave crashes. Here are my Takeaways from Tallahassee, er, St. Augustine. — If I had to revise my list of Winners and Losers emerging from…

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Bill Day’s latest: Daniel Tilson and the FDLE Keystone Cops

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In his newest editorial cartoon, Bill Day takes on the state’s “Keystone Cops,” otherwise known as the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. FDLE, in a rare moment of self-reflection, acknowledged it “could have better evaluated” the “threat” from Boca Raton-based blogger Daniel Tilson. Tilson’s transgression? Using a Beatles lyric in a recent Context Florida post criticizing Gov. Rick Scott’s tax-cut proposal. Tilson’s column mocked Scott’s tax-cut plan, comparing it to the album Magical Mystery Tour. A Facebook post linking to…

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The week ahead at the Florida Capitol

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This week at the Florida Capitol battle lines will be formally drawn for the 2015 state budget debate. Both the House and Senate will hold floor sessions to discuss their respective budgets. Each chamber could approve a state spending plan for next year by week’s end, and given that they are presently separated by $4.2 billion the two are poised to deliver to the other a bureaucratic slap-across- the-face challenge to a duel. The differences in the spending plans can…

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Mitch Perry Report for 3.26.15 — How viable is Rubio’s plan to replace the ACA?

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

I wrote up several stories regarding polls in Florida yesterday, and in one of those stories I wrote briefly about Marco Rubio’s plan to replace Obamacare. As we all know, the GOP has been castigated for being nattering nabobs of negativism (to trot out that golden oldie written by Pat Buchanan and uttered by Spiro Agnew) when it comes to the Affordable Care Act; always criticizing, always (in the House) voting to repeal, but barely able to come up with…

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