House, Senate Budgets Top $115B

House, Senate Budgets Top $115B

By The News Service of Florida The Florida House and Senate on Friday released proposed budgets for the 2024-2025 fiscal year that top $115 billion — but would be less than the current year’s spending plan. The Senate proposal (SB 2500) totaled $115.9 billion, while the House proposal (PCB APC 24-01) came in just under […]

Florida Jobless Claims Dip

Florida Jobless Claims Dip

By The News Service of Florida First-time unemployment claims dropped in Florida after a brief post-holiday season increase. The U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday estimated 5,610 unemployment applications were filed last week in Florida, down from 7,103 during the week that ended Jan. 13. Last week’s total was similar to the state’s 5,697 weekly […]

DeSantis Message: ‘Stay the Course’

DeSantis Message: ‘Stay the Course’

By Jim Turner, The News Service of Tallahassee TALLAHASSEE — With his presidential campaign in the background, Gov. Ron DeSantis used his annual State of the State address Tuesday to tout Florida’s accomplishments — while offering few new details of priorities for the 2024 legislative session. DeSantis’ speech in the state House chamber formally launched […]

Evan Power Tapped to Replace Ziegler as GOP Chair

Evan Power Tapped to Replace Ziegler as GOP Chair

BY Jim Turner, The News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE — The state Republican Party’s executive committee Monday removed embattled Chairman Christian Ziegler and elevated Vice Chairman Evan Power to lead the party as the 2024 election year gets underway. Power said after the meeting the party is “moving forward.” While acknowledging a pause in fundraising, […]

Lawmakers Seek Disney District Redo

Lawmakers Seek Disney District Redo

By Jim Turner, The News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE — Orange County lawmakers Friday backed a longshot proposal that could essentially return to the Walt Disney Co. control of a special taxing district that was revamped after Gov. Ron DeSantis got into a feud with the entertainment giant. In a voice vote, members of the […]

10 Big Issues in the 2024 Session

10 Big Issues in the 2024 Session

BY Jim Saunders, The News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE — Florida lawmakers will start the annual 60-day legislative session on Jan. 9, with Gov. Ron DeSantis giving his State of the State address. Here are 10 issues to watch during the session: — ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE: As access to artificial intelligence continues to expand, lawmakers are […]

Local EV Charging Regulations Eyed

Local EV Charging Regulations Eyed

By The News Service of Florida A Senate Republican this week proposed preventing local governments from regulating electric-vehicle charging stations. Senate Agriculture Chairman Jay Collins, R-Tampa, included the prohibition in a bill (SB 1084) that includes a wide range of issues related to the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Under the proposal, regulation […]

Lawmakers Look to Curb Student Absenteeism

Lawmakers Look to Curb Student Absenteeism

By Ryan Dailey, The News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE — Florida lawmakers during the upcoming legislative session could look to address the problem of chronic absenteeism among public-school students. Data collected by the Florida Department of Education showed that 20.9 percent of students in public schools, including students in adult education courses, missed 21 or […]

Abortion Measure Nears Requirement

Abortion Measure Nears Requirement

By The News Service of Florida Supporters of a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at ensuring abortion rights in Florida continue to get closer to meeting a signature requirement to reach the 2024 ballot. The Florida Division of Elections website Friday showed 833,743 valid petition signatures for the proposal, up from 753,306 a week earlier and […]

Florida Jobless Rate at 2.9 Percent

Florida Jobless Rate at 2.9 Percent

By Jim Turner, Tom Urban The News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE — While still near historically low levels, Florida’s unemployment rate inched up to 2.9 percent in November. The November rate was an increase from 2.8 percent in October and represented 324,000 people out of work from a labor force of 11.19 million, according to […]