March 2, 2022 -

Miami Today 

Commission moves ahead to expand Miami-Dade County seat 

County commissioners on Tuesday approved in a first hearing a resolution by Joe A. Martinez to expand the boundaries of the county seat beyond the City of Miami. If adopted after a final hearing, five constitutional officers to be elected in 2024 – the sheriff, tax collector, property appraiser, supervisor of elections and clerk of court – could move their offices to other incorporated and unincorporated areas of Miami-Dade. 

 

New4Jax 

St. Johns County commissioners introduce sales tax increase, aiming for November ballot measure 

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – The St. Johns County Board of Commissioners read through an official proposal Tuesday afternoon, which, if passed, would increase the county’s sales tax rate by one percent for at least the next ten years. The revenue generated would be used to help the county improve roads, bridges, public safety and parks to account for the massive influx in population. 

 

Orlando Sentinel 

Floridians grappling with mental health are neglected | Commentary 

Florida has a dark and shameful record when it comes to mental health. Even when families make the brave decision to seek help — a father suffering with depression or a child struggling with violent tendencies — their options are often limited in a state that has only a fraction of the treatment options needed and that ranks 49th per capita in funding, according to Florida State University’s Claude Pepper center. 

 

Fox4 

Drug treatment center says fentanyl addiction growing, as Lee Co. expands narcotics unit 

The amount of the extremely dangerous drug Fentanyl, that Lee County deputies have seized, have more than doubled since 2020. That's just part of what Lee County Sheriff, Carmine Marceno told county commissioners on Tuesday; leading to what he described as an epidemic in drug overdose of deaths.  

 

Highlands News Sun 

DiGiacomo: County will need people to test their broadband 

SEBRING — Sometime in the relatively near future, Highlands County officials will want you to test your internet. Called a “speed test,” it will allow county staff to know where the internet works well in the county and where it does not, helping them direct federal funds toward making improvements in the local system. 

 

LEGISLATURE 

WLRN 

How two bills would rewrite the relationship between businesses and local governments in Florida 

The latest Tallahassee Takeover podcast from WLRN News explores the building friction over business and local rules. The battle over booze in Miami Beach may be its first test. 

What are three hours worth? What are the hours from 2 until 5 o’clock in the morning worth – in financial terms and for quality of life? That’s one way to think about a decision before Miami Beach city commissioners. Last fall, 56% of voters in the city supported an effort to move last call for alcohol on South Beach from 5 a.m. to 2 a.m., erasing three hours of business for bars, restaurants and nightclubs. 

 

News Service of America 

House, Senate start hammering out budget 

TALLAHASSEE — House and Senate negotiators Tuesday began narrowing budget differences, with agreement on issues such as a minimum-wage proposal, spending on a new elections investigation office and revamping pay in the Department of Corrections. But gaps remained as several conference committees face a Thursday deadline to agree on spending details. 

 

FloridaPolitics.com 

Budget conference: Wilton Simpson looms over $402M gap in House, Senate FDACS funding 

As Senate President, the Trilby Republican and Ag Comish-hopeful plays an outsized role in the budget process. Senate President Wilton Simpson is the clear favorite to be Florida’s next Agriculture Commissioner. Perhaps it’s not a coincidence the Senate’s proposed budget for his prospective agency is nearly 25% larger than the House’s. 

 

Keys Free Press 

State legislation could turn affordable housing into market rate 

TALLAHASSEE — A bill sponsored by Florida Keys state Sen. Ana Maria Rodriguez and backed by the developer of two major affordable projects in the Keys could make it easier to turn government-subsidized affordable housing into market-rate housing.