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richard stark

House, Senate bills to repeal PIP clear committees despite questions, differences

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Florida lawmakers appear to be taking steps to repeal a state law requiring personal injury protection coverage, but differences remain between the House and Senate proposals. The Senate Banking and Insurance Committee voted 8-1 to approve a bill (SB 1766) that would repeal the Florida Motor Vehicle No-Fault Law, replacing the PIP mandate with a requirement that motorists carry bodily injury protection. The Senate proposal, sponsored by Hillsborough County Republican Sen. Tom Lee, would create a medical payment, or MedPay,…

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Rick Scott signs bill to boost education for veterans into law

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Gov. Rick Scott–as part of an avalanche of bills he granted final approval to go onto the books today–signed into law SB 7028 on Thursday afternoon. The bill, carried by the Military and Veterans Affairs, Space, and Domestic Security Committee and its chairman Republican Sen. Thad Altman in the Senate and Broward Democratic Rep. Richard Stark in the House, is designed to increase educational access to military veterans. Specifically the bill would amend the Congressman C.W. Bill” Young Veteran Tuition Waiver Program to increase the…

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Florida House: Buy flags made in the United States

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Cities, counties and state government will have to buy state and American flags made in the United States under a bill passed by the Florida House. The House on Friday voted 110-2 for the “All American Flag Act.” But the vote triggered a debate about whether the mandate itself is American. Some legislators said that forcing local and state government to buy flags made in the United States was “anti-capitalist” and a “restraint of trade.” But other lawmakers said that…

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House red-light cameras bill rolls through committee stop

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State Rep. Bryan Avila faced pointed scrutiny in the House Transportation & Economic Development Appropriations Subcommittee on Monday, as he played shepherd to a bill that would circumscribe the way cities and local governments can use controversial devices to detect traffic infractions known as red-light cameras. HB 7071 sought to limit the amount of infraction-based revenue cities get to spend on matters unrelated to public safety — many have referred to the cameras as “cash cows” for municipalities — require citations…

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Lewd and lascivious? Senate panel eyes living-in-sin ban

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Shacking up in Florida can cost you. Living in sin is a crime that, if found guilty of, can show up on an employment background screening and can be used in civil cases involving child custody. Unmarried cohabitation has been in the state’s lewd and lascivious laws since the 1860s. The crime was included in the state’s Level II screening background laws initially passed in 1995. It was picked up in child protection laws passed in 2007 and grandparent visitation…

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