Five of today’s top Florida political stories at your fingertips:
Gov. Rick Scott celebrates tax cuts with a tour of Florida— Gov. Rick Scott visited Miami on Monday as part of what he’s billing as a seven-city “victory tour,” celebrating $400 million in tax cuts the legislature approved as part of the state’s new budget. In his brief speech held in Doral at Sergio’s Restaurant, a local Cuban-American owned chain, Scott said he was pleased with the tax cuts and promised more in the future. Read more
Bill Galvano tapped to lead GOP Senate Campaign Committee – With the 2015 legislative session behind state lawmakers, Florida Republican senators are wasting no time, already gearing up for 2016 campaign efforts. In a move widely expected to energize Republican Senate fundraising efforts come next year, Sen. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, will take the helm of the 2016 Florida Republican Senatorial Campaign Committee. Sen. President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, announced Galvano’s selection in an email sent to GOP caucus members Monday afternoon. Read more
Environmental groups file suit over Amendment 1 spending – Four environmental groups are filing a lawsuit against Florida over the Legislature’s decision to spend much of the funding tied to an amendment designed to conserve land passed that was by voters last fall on ongoing state operations and projects. “The Legislature did not do what the amendment requires,” said Florida Wildlife Federation president Manley Fuller. The FWF is joined in the suit by Earthjustice, the St. Johns Riverkeeper and the Environmental Confederation of Southwest Florida. Read more
Americans for Prosperity to Rick Scott: Veto late budget additions –A conservative-advocacy group is telling Gov. Rick Scott it’ll have his back if he vetoes projects crammed into the state budget just before the nearly $80 billion package was completed last week. “We are making everyone aware that we are not happy with the $301 million in last minute projects,” Americans for Prosperity-Florida spokesman Andres Malave said Sunday. “AFP stands with Floridians who wouldn’t be disappointed if the governor vetoed projects not beneficial to all taxpayers.” Read more
Battle over bear hunting set for Wednesday in Sarasota— With the black bear population across Florida booming — and run-ins with humans increasing — the state agency that protects wildlife says the time has come to allow hunters into the woods to take a limited number of bruins. The ursine population had dwindled to as few as 300 in the 1970s through over hunting and loss of habitat. The state then put Florida black bears on a state-threatened species list, and the number of bears began to grow. There are now an estimated 3,000 black bears, known as Ursus americanus floridanus in scientific circles, in various wildlife management areas and on private property throughout the state. Read more
Finally! Alonzo Mourning, developers break ground on affordable housing project in Overtown
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