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Under New Law, the Public Can Access Florida's Beaches, Same as Always

April 23, 2018 - 6:00am

In Florida’s legislative session, a bipartisan supermajority passed a bill, House Bill 631, that provides uniformity in how we preserve the public’s recreational use of the beaches, even when a portion of that beach is on private property. In politics, nothing truly controversial gets lopsided support from both parties. 

Libyan Crisis Threatens U.S. Interests, Administration Must Play Larger Role

April 19, 2018 - 9:30am
On Wednesday, U.S. Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, the chairwoman of the U.S. House Middle East and North Africa Subcommittee, held a hearing on “Libya Fractured: The Struggle for Unity.” Her opening statement is below. 

CRC Proposal 96, Marsy's Law, Will Improve Justice System

April 13, 2018 - 6:00am

The criminal justice system in Florida has seen many changes since I first started coming to Tallahassee nearly 40 years ago. The focus is almost always on the criminal; giving the right punishment for the crime while protecting their constitutional rights. But there is another party that is always affected when a crime is committed -- the victim. Unfortunately, Florida’s track record of protecting their constitutional rights is not as great.

Judge’s Decision: Med Pot Amendment Could Be Stricken from the Constitution

April 12, 2018 - 10:30am

Second Circuit Judge Karen Gievers ruled Wednesday that Joe Redner, a pony-tailed strip club owner from Tampa, is entitled to grow his own pot.

How Can We Solve the Problem of Future School Shootings?

April 10, 2018 - 9:00pm

The Parkland school shooting was a terrible, heinous act by a person who, in my opinion, deserves the death penalty.

Coming as it did during the closing weeks of the 2018 legislative session, the Legislature was forced to address the issue in a fashion that is little more than window dressing.

Sadly, it won’t stop this from happening again because the solution didn’t focus enough attention on the crux of the problem.

This isn’t a gun issue despite what students, parents and others want to make it.

Why Closing the Gun Show Loophole Won’t Stop Criminals or Gang Members

April 9, 2018 - 10:00pm

The Leon County Commission is scheduled to conduct a public hearing Tuesday night to discuss a proposed gun show loophole ordinance pushed by Commissioner Mary Ann Lindley.

I’ve known Mary Ann for years and when she last suggested this bad idea, I called her, and she later withdrew the proposal.

Why is this idea wrong-headed and counter-productive?

Because it feeds into the unwarranted belief that it will do something about gun violence.

Florida’s Small-Business Community Is Gravely Impacted by the Opioid Crisis

March 23, 2018 - 6:00am

Recently, we have seen the significant impact of the opioid epidemic all over the United States. In Florida, Gov. Rick Scott issued a statewide public health emergency last year.

Cat Fund and Other Pre-Irma Insurance Decisions Saved Florida from Economic Disaster

March 22, 2018 - 6:00am

September's strike of Hurricane Irma was one of the strongest storms Florida has ever seen. Every region of the state was affected in some way by the storm, which thus far has caused nearly $8 billion in insured property losses.

While $8 billion is no small number, had the storm stayed on its original forecast track just 50 to 100 miles east of its eventual path -- had it directly hit Miami-Dade County and traveled up the entire peninsula, losses easily could have been topped $100 billion.

Landmark Legislation Balances Interests of Private Landowners and Public to Use Beachfront Property

March 21, 2018 - 9:30am

Without a doubt, one of the most controversial and highly misunderstood bills passed by the 2018 Florida Legislature involved public access to Florida’s beaches contained in House Bill 631. 

A Call for the CRC to Drop Proposal 91 to Ban Oil Drilling

March 19, 2018 - 6:00am

I have a recommendation for the Constitutional Revision Commission: Drop consideration of proposal 91 to establish a constitutional ban on oil and natural gas exploration in state waters. The justification for proposal 91 is quickly nullified with the lightest application of scrutiny.

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