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House of Representatives

House PR machine turns to its version of state budget

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The House of Representatives has released a new “explainer” video to explain its proposed 2017-18 state budget. And—fun!—it’s a cartoon. “Don’t have time to read hundreds of pages?” it starts. “That’s OK, because we’ve got the Florida House budget in under a few minutes.” The nearly three-minute video explains that the House, led by Speaker Richard Corcoran, proposes no new taxes and adds another $25,000 on top of the state’s homestead exemption for property tax. The House also “cuts pork…

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House also files short witness list for Lottery trial

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The House of Representatives’ in-house lawyer also plans to call just two witnesses at trial in Speaker Richard Corcoran‘s lawsuit against the Florida Lottery. House general counsel Adam Tanenbaum‘s witness list was posted in court dockets Monday. Barry Richard, the Lottery’s outside lawyer, similarly said he plans to call only two witnesses. A non-jury trial is scheduled for March 6. The speaker sued the agency, which reports to Gov. Rick Scott, saying it was guilty of “wasteful and improper spending” for signing a multiple-year,…

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Florida House announces more leadership roles

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The state House of Representatives Monday released its full 2016-18 committee and subcommittee assignments and chairs. “I am proud of the way the new process was handled by all involved – applicants and chairs alike,” Speaker Richard Corcoran said in a statement. “All who participated have my respect and will be called upon to use their talents and knowledge to transform the way government works for the people of Florida.” Corcoran, who said he wanted to “decentralize authority,” said the…

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Richard Corcoran blazing his own leadership trail

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House Speaker-designate Richard Corcoran grins widely when you suggest he’s stealing a page from the “progressive” politics playbook. The Land O’ Lakes Republican held an impromptu press conference Tuesday after he welcomed new members at their two-day orientation session, another Corcoran innovation. He was asked: Prohibiting state representatives from flying in lobbyists’ airplanes? Increasing the ban on former members lobbying their colleagues from two years to six years? Aren’t these usually — dare we say — proposals that come from the other…

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Kathy Castor ‘running on adrenaline’ after 26-hour sit-in House protest

in The Bay and the 'Burg/Top Headlines by

U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor said Thursday she is “running on adrenaline” following her participation in an overnight sit-in at the House of Representatives in Washington. The Tampa congresswoman joined other Democrats in a protest against the refusal by House Speaker Paul Ryan to allow a vote on restricting access to military-style assault weapons in the wake of the mass murder June 12 in Orlando. The protest lasted about 26 hours after it began at 11:24 a.m. Wednesday. “The sit-in is…

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As summer arrives, Bill Nelson calls for more funding for mosquito control

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As an afternoon storm blew through downtown Orlando, Florida Senator Bill Nelson addressed a group of reporters at his regional office Friday and called for more funding from the government to fight mosquitoes carrying the Zika virus that can come with such storms. The Zika virus has been spreading in a way Nelson and other worried officials call “a full-blown crisis.” And Congress, Nelson said, isn’t doing enough. He stated that they had been acting “irresponsibly” by not giving enough funding to…

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Session is over: Supreme Court rules against Senate Ds

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The Supreme Court of Florida on Friday refused to grant a writ of mandamus to Senate Democrats who were seeking to compel the Florida House to return to Tallahassee to finish the 2015 regular legislative session. But five of the seven justices opined that the House’s actions violated the state Constitution as the Democrats argued. In a unanimous ruling, the court denied the write of mandamus because Democrats failed to show that the issuance of the writ of mandamus “would…

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