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J.D. Alexander

Baxter Troutman entering competitive Agriculture Commissioner race

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Former state Rep. Baxter Troutman of Winter Haven said he will run for Florida Commissioner of Agriculture. The grandson of the late citrus baron and one-time gubernatorial candidate, Ben Hill Griffin Jr., Troutman will enter the competitive race to succeed Adam Putnam, a Bartow Republican who is term-limited and is running for governor. “I will file either Friday or Monday at the latest,” Troutman said. “This isn’t a decision I came to lightly and it isn’t a step to advance to…

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Rick Scott declines to comment on proposal to repeal immigration bill he signed in 2014

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Rick Scott is declining to comment on a proposal filed for the 2017 Florida Legislative Session that would repeal a major immigration policy change that he signed into law two years ago. Last week, Sarasota state Senator Greg Steube filed a bill (SB 82) that would repeal legislation approved by the GOP-led Legislature in 2014 that offers lower in-state tuition rates in Florida state colleges and universities for undocumented immigrants. Passage of that bill was uncertain until the end of that year’s session, but…

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State workers spared pay cut

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From Sunshine News: Although for a fifth straight year lawmakers have declined to provide state worker pay-raises, union officials Monday said they were satisfied with lawmakers’ decision to back away from a proposed pay cut. The House accepted a Senate proposal that will require some 27,000 mid-level managers, lawmakers and other workers pay a modest amount for health coverage for the first time. Public employees across the state who are part of the state’s pension plan would also have to…

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Late-night deal reached on a nearly $70 billion spending plan

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From the Florida Current: House and Senate budget negotiators racing against the clock reached a deal late Monday night on a nearly $70 billion spending plan. The last-minute agreement means that state lawmakers will be able to end the 2010 session on time. The final deal came amid a flurry of last-minute changes, including a decision to spare state libraries from budget cuts, an agreement to offer help to financially ailing Jackson Memorial Hospital and a boost of $50 million…

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