Florida headlines

POINT OF VIEW: Pay attention, revise Florida Constitution with caution

Every 20 years, the state’s core governing document, the Florida Constitution, is opened up for a top-to-bottom review. Through this process, the Constitution Revision Commission (CRC) carefully examines and determines what, if any, amendments to propose directly to the citizens. Under our form of government, the only power the government has is the power that we, the people, give to the government...
White nationalist rally in Gainesville was storm that fizzled

White nationalist rally in Gainesville was storm that fizzled

So “Hurricane Spencer” turned out to be a Category Zero. Richard Spencer, the white nationalist who reveled in the notoriety he created by speaking at the University of Florida last week, craved the dread he had created in the state. Gov. Rick Scott had issued a state of emergency days before his speech. Security costs for this exercise in free speech were predicted to be $600,000. Spencer...
NEW: Double murder brings 60-year sentence for teen killer

NEW: Double murder brings 60-year sentence for teen killer

Legends. That’s how the families of Andrew Laudano and Ricky Miner wanted everyone in a Palm Beach County courtroom Friday to remember them. In the moments before Circuit Judge Laura Johnson sentenced the men’s 14-year-old killer to 60 years in prison for gunning them down in a 2015 west Boynton robbery, it was important for their families — especially Laudano’s brothers...
Eat at Five Guys today and aid Puerto Rico hurricane relief

Eat at Five Guys today and aid Puerto Rico hurricane relief

There’s a really good reason to eat at a Five Guys restaurant Saturday. The franchise is hosting a fundraiser all day and hopes to raise at least $20,000 to give to the YMCA in Puerto Rico for hurricane relief. Newk’s Eatery in Palm Beach Gardens is also involved.  The Five Guys locations in Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie and Broward counties are all participating.  Thirty...
Poll: Majority of Florida voters doesn't want assault weapons ban

Poll: Majority of Florida voters doesn't want assault weapons ban

Despite the recent mass shooting in Las Vegas that killed 58 people, a majority of Florida voters are against prohibiting the sale of assault weapons, according to a recent poll. The poll was conducted Oct. 5-11 by the Public Opinion Research Laboratory at the University of North Florida. On Oct. 1, a man who once lived in Florida opened fire on a Country music concert from the 32nd floor of a Las...
Quarles guilty of 2nd-degree murder of Santaluces schoolmate

Quarles guilty of 2nd-degree murder of Santaluces schoolmate

In the minutes after a Palm Beach County jury announced they had a verdict in Frank Quarles’ murder trial, bowed heads stretched across both sides of the courtroom. In the back, two men who came with Quarles’ family lowered their heads in prayer, hoping that jurors would find Quarles guilty only of manslaughter in the Feb. 8, 2012 shooting death of fellow Santaluces High student Michael...
GL Homes mounts email campaign for its Ag Reserve development plan

GL Homes mounts email campaign for its Ag Reserve development plan

Palm Beach County commissioners are getting an earful — actually, an email in-box full — from backers of a controversial GL Homes development plan. The developer has asked county residents to let county commissioners know they support the builder’s plan to preserve 4,900 acres in The Acreage/Loxahatchee area in exchange for a rule change that would allow it to build more on land...
Planning commissioner quits, citing GL Homes plan, other development

Planning commissioner quits, citing GL Homes plan, other development

A member of the Palm Beach County Planning Commission has resigned, citing frustration with large-scale development projects that have been recommended by the commission. Domenic R. Guarnagia’s resignation comes two months before the Planning Commission takes up a controversial development proposal from GL Homes, which wants the county to change the rules of its Agricultural Reserve so GL can...
White nationalist at UF: Two arrested, five injured surrounding Richard Spencer speech

White nationalist at UF: Two arrested, five injured surrounding Richard Spencer speech

Follow the latest news on white nationalist Richard Spencer’s speech at the University of Florida in Gainesville: Two people were arrested and five people injured in the hours surrounding white nationalist Richard Spencer’s talk on the University of Florida’s campus Thursday, according to authorities.  Sean Brijmohan, 28, of Orlando, faces charges of possessing a firearm on...
Cerabino: ‘Senator Death’ puts happy face on nursing home fatalities

Cerabino: ‘Senator Death’ puts happy face on nursing home fatalities

I knew that state Sen. Dennis Baxley was a death enthusiast, but until recently, I underestimated his passion. Baxley’s a funeral director by trade who dabbles in lawmaking on the side. The state’s 2005 “stand your ground” gun law is his baby. It’s a big reason for the 31 percent uptick in gun homicides in Florida since it was enacted, according to a study published...
NEW: Another Irma-damaged welcome sign missing in the Keys

NEW: Another Irma-damaged welcome sign missing in the Keys

A copycat thief has apparently struck in the Florida Keys. A second town's welcome sign has gone missing after being damaged by Hurricane Irma. The sign welcoming drivers to Tavernier in the Upper Keys disappeared over the weekend, FLKeysNews.com reported. The news came just days after the iconic Key West welcome sign was returned. That sign was gone for more than a month after it vanished in...
Democrat Philip Levine close to entering Florida governor’s race

Democrat Philip Levine close to entering Florida governor’s race

Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine at the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) Miami Beach Mayor Philip Levine‘s political committee announced more hires today that make it appear all but certain Levine will be launching a Democratic campaign for governor soon. Already announced Democratic candidates for...
Justice Pariente: Legal Aid apt beneficiary of class action win

Justice Pariente: Legal Aid apt beneficiary of class action win

Florida Supreme Court Justice Barbara Pariente on Thursday watched her former law partner hand the Legal Aid Society of Palm Beach County a hefty check — the fruits of his second successful class-action lawsuit against an infamous South Florida foreclosure attorney who was later disbarred. The $206,700 check, which attorney Louis Silber presented to the nonprofit law firm that serves low-income...
Testimony ends in Frank Quarles’ trial in death of Santaluces teen

Testimony ends in Frank Quarles’ trial in death of Santaluces teen

There’s no doubt that Frank Quarles ended the life of a fellow Santaluces High School student five years ago after they argued over Quarles’ stolen bike. The only thing that a Palm Beach County jury began deliberating Thursday was whether the killing was accidental or a case of first-degree murder. Testimony in Quarles’ weeklong trial ended Thursday with more anguish and tears from...
Ex-Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka weighs in on Florida GOP post

Ex-Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka weighs in on Florida GOP post

Former Trump adviser Sebastian Gorka with Karen Giorno in a picture from Giorno’s website for her campaign for Republican national committeewoman. The Sebastian Gorka primary is over in the race for Florida’s vacant Republican national committeewoman post. Gorka, the frequent Fox News guest and former adviser to President Donald Trump, is endorsing...
Want to be in a Matthew McConaughey movie? Here’s your chance

Want to be in a Matthew McConaughey movie? Here’s your chance

The bright lights and shining stars of Hollywood are coming to South Florida, and you have a chance to land a role alongside Matthew McConaughey. Talent Powerhouse is casting roles for the upcoming comedy movie “The Beach Bum,” which stars McConaughey and Snoop Dogg and is set to start filming next month in Miami, as reported by projectcasting.com. The film’s producers are looking...
Palm Beach billionaire not ruling out run for governor

Palm Beach billionaire not ruling out run for governor

Palm Beach billionaire Jeff Greene hasn’t shut the door on a Democratic bid for governor. Billionaire real estate investor Jeff Greene — ranked 62 spots higher than Palm Beach neighbor Donald Trump on the latest Forbes 400 list — says he’d like to be Florida governor and thinks he’d be effective in the job. “It would be...
Irma food aid speeds up after complaints; $873 million already paid

Irma food aid speeds up after complaints; $873 million already paid

The Florida Department of Children and Families has paid out more than $873 million for disaster food assistance in 34 counties impacted by Hurricane Irma, including $30 million in Palm Beach County. The department released data about the D-SNAP food stamp program and improvements to the application process late Wednesday afternoon after news reports about people waiting as long as 8 hours outdoors...
Corey Jones family mourns, officer who killed him prepares for trial

Corey Jones family mourns, officer who killed him prepares for trial

Two years ago today, 31-year-old Corey Jones lost his life in a deadly roadside confrontation with a Palm Beach Gardens police officer in plain clothes — a case that prosecutors are hoping could bring a rare criminal conviction for an officer involved in an on-duty killing. But as Jones’ family and supporters spend the day remembering the beloved drummer and planning weekend events to...
White nationalist’s speech at UF has students angry, wary, curious

White nationalist’s speech at UF has students angry, wary, curious

Part Pakistani and part culturally Jewish, Shaaz Feldman says he’s the type of person Richard Spencer likely wants dead. The 21-year-old University of Florida student from Delray Beach plans to pack up some things from his campus dormitory and stay with a friend Thursday, when the white nationalist delivers a speech on campus. As Spencer and his National Policy Institute plan their event...
Florida Constitution Commission advances four more public proposals

Florida Constitution Commission advances four more public proposals

The Florida Constitution Revision Commission on Tuesday voted to advance four public proposals, including a measure dealing with homestead exemptions and another potentially impacting abortion rights. The commission, which meets every 20 years and has the power to place constitutional amendments directly on the 2018 ballot, has voted to formally consider a total of six measures proposed by the public...
Last charge dropped in case of 72-foot yacht grounded in Palm Beach

Last charge dropped in case of 72-foot yacht grounded in Palm Beach

Palm Beach County prosecutors have dropped the last criminal charge against a Belle Isle captain who said he was drunk on Long Island Ice Teas last year when he ran his 72-foot-yacht aground near the Palm Beach Inlet. Thomas Henry Baker, 64, pleaded guilty last month in Palm Beach County Circuit Court to willful and wanton reckless operation of vessel in connection with the Sept. 7, 2016 incident...
Boca Mayor Haynie files for Abram’s Palm Beach County Commission seat

Boca Mayor Haynie files for Abram’s Palm Beach County Commission seat

Residents in southern Palm Beach County currently have a former Boca Raton mayor, Steven Abrams, serving as their county commissioner. Boca Raton’s current mayor, Susan Haynie, hopes to follow in Abrams’ footsteps. Haynie, re-elected to a second three-year term as mayor in March, filed Wednesday to run for Abrams’ District 4 county commission seat in 2018. Abrams, who has served...
Nude photos taken in Florida judge’s chambers lead to clerk’s arrest 

Nude photos taken in Florida judge’s chambers lead to clerk’s arrest 

A Florida clerk who allegedly took nude photos of his girlfriend in a judge’s chambers was arrested Monday on a petty theft charge, news reports stated. The twisted tale involves Jefferson County Clerk of Courts Kirk Reams, 40, and his ex-girlfriend Brittany McClellan, according to the Tallahassee Democrat.  The two began dating in 2012, had a child together and broke up about a year...
Broward lawyer drops emoluments clause suit against President Trump

Broward lawyer drops emoluments clause suit against President Trump

Recognizing that others are already accusing President Donald Trump of running afoul of the U.S. Constitution’s emoluments clauses, a Broward County lawyer has dropped his lawsuit that makes similar claims. “(The) argument is being adequately made by others, and with best wishes for their success,” attorney Patrick Goggins wrote last week, alerting U.S. District Judge Robin...
Gillum puts Trump-Gold Star widow controversy into Florida governor’s race

Gillum puts Trump-Gold Star widow controversy into Florida governor’s race

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum at the Florida Democratic Party’s Leadership Blue gathering in Hollywood in June. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) Democratic candidate Andrew Gillum is putting the uproar over President Donald Trump‘s remarks to a Gold Star widow from Miami Lakes into the Florida governor&rsquo...
Palm Beach County relief effort for Puerto Rico, V.I. seeks volunteers

Palm Beach County relief effort for Puerto Rico, V.I. seeks volunteers

Palm Beach County Cares wants you — and whatever baby formula, cleaning supplies, first aid kits, flashlights and batteries you can spare. The group, formed to aid disaster relief in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, is looking for volunteers and donations. It has set up a total of 13 donation sites in Palm Beach, Palm Beach Gardens, West Palm Beach, Lake Worth, Delray Beach and Jupiter...
Ex-Gators quarterback Chris Leak loses teaching license after allegedly asking student to touch his genitals

Ex-Gators quarterback Chris Leak loses teaching license after allegedly asking student to touch his genitals

A former Florida Gators quarterback did not contest allegations that he asked an underage student to touch him inappropriately. Edgewater High School football coach and Art Recovery teacher Chris Leak, who played quarterback at the University of Florida just before Tim Tebow, voluntarily surrendered his Florida Educator’s Certificate amid allegations that, around Sept. 5, 2016, he received a...

POINT OF VIEW: Time for Florida to take a closer look at charters

Florida’s charter school movement had humble beginnings in the 1990s, as pioneers promised tailored programs. Along the way, the lucrative for-profit industry convinced Florida’s Legislature and governor, through House Bill 7069, that their privately owned facilities should be funded at equal levels to Florida’s 4,200 public schools. This comes despite research showing charters have...
Editorial: Scott must stand firm on getting generators into facilities

Editorial: Scott must stand firm on getting generators into facilities

Florida’s nursing home industry, which has been whining ever since Gov. Rick Scott ordered facilities to install enough generator power to keep elderly people from dying of heat after the next hurricane, is now asking for permission to be excused from Scott’s emergency deadline. As of Monday, 54 providers of nursing homes or assisted-living facilities requested variances from the compliance...
Palm Beach Dr. Marder to give up medical license to resolve fraud case

Palm Beach Dr. Marder to give up medical license to resolve fraud case

A Palm Beach dermatologist will give up his medical license as part of a plea deal to resolve obstruction and health-care fraud charges, his attorney and a federal prosecutor said Wednesday. Appearing before U.S. Magistrate James Hopkins, Dr. Gary Marder pleaded not guilty to the charges. To remain free while his attorney, Richard Lubin, and Assistant U.S. Attorney Ellen Cohen put the final touches...
Trump-Gold Star widow controversy: Rep. Lois Frankel offers thoughts

Trump-Gold Star widow controversy: Rep. Lois Frankel offers thoughts

In this Tuesday, Oct. 17, 2017, frame from video, Myeshia Johnson cries over the casket in Miami of her husband, Sgt. La David Johnson, who was killed in an ambush in Niger. (WPLG via AP) As President Donald Trump and U.S. Rep. Frederica Wilson, D-Miami, trade accusations over what Trump said to the widow of a South Florida soldier killed in Niger...
Palm Beach County OKs borrowing up to $35 million for debris removal

Palm Beach County OKs borrowing up to $35 million for debris removal

Palm Beach County commissioners approved a $35 million line of credit Tuesday to pay for Hurricane Irma debris removal and to replenish the reserves of the Solid Waste Authority. The line of credit, obtained through Wells Fargo, reflects both the high costs of storm cleanup and the slow pace of reimbursement from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which has yet to pay the state of Florida and...
Beam her up; alien-contacted Florida candidate seeks House seat

Beam her up; alien-contacted Florida candidate seeks House seat

We here at the Citizens Against Virtually Everything are uncharacteristically enthusiastic about the candidacy of Bettina Rodriguez Aguilera for a soon-to-be vacant Florida seat in the U.S. House of Representatives. As you might expect, we CAVEs are usually against most things, especially in the political realm, but this next election cycle is promising to put Florida in the sort of national spotlight...
U.S. OKs reimbursing Palm Beach County $1 million for Trump security

U.S. OKs reimbursing Palm Beach County $1 million for Trump security

Palm Beach County taxpayers will get a $1 million reimbursement from the federal government for helping the Secret Service protect Donald Trump when he stayed in Palm Beach as president-elect. Now the county is waiting to hear on a separate application for about $3.5 million in federal reimbursements for costs racked up by the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office and local police departments...
Trump in Palm Beach: $1 million reimbursement coming, Frankel says

Trump in Palm Beach: $1 million reimbursement coming, Frankel says

Palm Beach County taxpayers will get a $1 million reimbursement from the federal government for the costs of protecting Donald Trump when he stayed in Palm Beach as president-elect. The money was approved by the U.S. Department of Justice last month and announced Tuesday by U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, whose district includes Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate. Frankel and...
Teen’s death blamed on shopping center entrance in Royal Palm Beach

Teen’s death blamed on shopping center entrance in Royal Palm Beach

A 16-year-old girl suffered fatal injuries while riding her bicycle home from her first night of classes at Royal Palm Beach High School in 2016 because of a flawed design of a shopping center driveway, according to a lawsuit filed Friday in Palm Beach County Circuit Court. The configuration of the driveway at Village Shoppes Plaza in Royal Palm Beach made it impossible for a driver of a BMW to see...
Family sues Florida East Coast Railway over Jupiter man’s death

Family sues Florida East Coast Railway over Jupiter man’s death

The family of a 73-year-old Jupiter man who was struck and killed by a Florida East Coast Railway train in December has sued the railroad for alleged negligence. In the lawsuit filed Friday in Palm Beach County Circuit Court, the family of Salvador Ramos-Campos claims the railroad didn’t take steps to assure pedestrians were safe. Ramos-Campos was killed when he was hit by a northbound train...
Donald Trump falls 92 places on Palm Beach-heavy Forbes 400 list

Donald Trump falls 92 places on Palm Beach-heavy Forbes 400 list

President Donald Trump at Palm Beach International Airport in February. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post) President and part-time Palm Beach resident  Donald Trump is the 248th wealthiest person in America, down from 156th place last year, in the latest Forbes 400 rankings. As Darrell Hofheinz of The Palm Beach Daily News reports, the latest list is...
Melania Trump urges Americans to donate, volunteer for hurricane relief

Melania Trump urges Americans to donate, volunteer for hurricane relief

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=go734MgUAM8&w=492&h=307] The White House has released a public service ad today featuring First Lady and part-time Palm Beach resident  Melania Trump urging Americans to donate and volunteer to help victims of hurricanes in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico. First lady Melania Trump in April talking to girls from HomeSafe in...
Palm Beach County approves $35M line of credit for debris removal

Palm Beach County approves $35M line of credit for debris removal

The board of the Solid Waste Authority of Palm Beach County approved a $35 million line of credit Tuesday to help pay for Hurricane Irma debris removal and to replenish the authority’s reserves. So far, the SWA, which oversees garbage, recycling and debris collection in unincorporated parts of the county, has spent $23 million removing 1.6 million of the estimated 3 million cubic yards of vegetative...
Scott in Boca: Wants $1 million for Jewish school security in 2018

Scott in Boca: Wants $1 million for Jewish school security in 2018

Florida Gov. Rick Scott wants the state to spend $1 million next year to help pay security costs at Jewish schools, a 53 percent increase over this year’s precedent-setting appropriation of $654,491 for safety measures. Scott made the announcement on Monday at Katz Hillel Day School west of Boca Raton, where many of the school’s 510 students lined walkways on the campus with hand-lettered...
Cerabino: Campaign cash dwarfs reason in utilities regulator choice

Cerabino: Campaign cash dwarfs reason in utilities regulator choice

Oh, no. Not the dwarf-tossing enthusiast. We have a new appointment to Florida’s Public Service Commission, which is designed to represent the taxpayers’ interests when it comes to setting rates and overseeing the state’s largest electric utility companies and other regulated industries. In theory. But we don’t live in theory. We live in Florida. And so as you might imagine...
PBSO deputy cleared in shooting death of mentally ill Loxahatchee man

PBSO deputy cleared in shooting death of mentally ill Loxahatchee man

A Palm Beach County sheriff’s deputy won’t face criminal charges for fatally shooting a mentally ill man whose parents summoned officers to their Loxahatchee home in December to stop their 46-year-old son from killing himself, the county’s top prosecutor has decided. In a memo released Monday, Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg ruled Deputy Justin Rigney was justified...
Former Santaluces High teen on trial in killing of fellow student

Former Santaluces High teen on trial in killing of fellow student

For a moment Monday, Isaac Serna sat in a Palm Beach County courtroom and stared straight ahead while he spoke, as if he could see his friend Michael Robertson and their schoolmate Frank Quarles standing within arm’s distance of each other right in front of him, just as they did more than five years ago. Testifying as one of the first witnesses in Quarles’ murder trial, Serna recalled...
2018 campaign cash: Mast raises most among Palm Beach County U.S. reps

2018 campaign cash: Mast raises most among Palm Beach County U.S. reps

Freshman U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City, has raised big bucks for his closely watched 2018 re-election bid while also spending some serious money to do it. Mast’s campaign has collected more than $1.5 million through Sept. 30 — far more than the other three incumbents in Palm Beach County’s U.S. House delegation. And Mast’s campaign has already spent $622,816, including...
NEW: State of emergency declared ahead of UF white nationalist speech

NEW: State of emergency declared ahead of UF white nationalist speech

Gov. Rick Scott on Monday declared a state of emergency in advance of a white nationalist’s speech Thursday at the University of Florida — an event that has led the school to spend $500,000 to “enhance security on campus” and in Gainesville. The declaration covers Alachua County through the visit of Richard Spencer. It allows the state to direct resources to the area and to...
Palm Beach County climate change czar leaving her post

Palm Beach County climate change czar leaving her post

Palm Beach County is losing its climate change czar. Natalie Schneider, hired in April 2015 to serve as the county’s climate change and sustainability coordinator, is leaving that post to accept a job in private industry. “Natalie has done an outstanding job representing the county in our four-county Southeast Florida Regional Climate Change Compact, and helping us build our local resilience...
In West Boca, Gov. Rick Scott calls for $1 million for Jewish school security

In West Boca, Gov. Rick Scott calls for $1 million for Jewish school security

Florida Gov. Rick Scott talks to students at Katz Hillel Day School west of Boca Raton this morning. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) Florida Gov. Rick Scott dropped by the Katz Hillel Day School west of Boca Raton this morning to call for increased state spending on security at Jewish schools. Florida legislators approved $654,000 for security measures for Jewish schools...
Florida Gov. Scott wants $1 million for security at Jewish schools

Florida Gov. Scott wants $1 million for security at Jewish schools

Florida Gov. Rick Scott wants the state to spend $1 million next year to help pay security costs at Jewish schools, up from $654,000 approved by legislators this year. Scott made the announcement at Katz Hillel Day School of Boca Raton, where many of the school’s 510 students lined walkways on the campus with hand-lettered signs to greet the governor. “I know many Floridians have been...
How will Reps. Mast, Frankel, Deutch and Hastings spend $2.4 million in campaign cash?

How will Reps. Mast, Frankel, Deutch and Hastings spend $2.4 million in campaign cash?

Palm Beach County’s U.S. House delegation for the 115th Congress, clockwise from top left: Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City; Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Delray Beach; Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton; Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach. The four members of Palm Beach County’s U.S. House delegation began October with a combined $2.4 million to spend on their 2018 re-election...
Congressional campaign cash: Mast tops locals in fundraising, spending

Congressional campaign cash: Mast tops locals in fundraising, spending

Freshman U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City, has raised big bucks for his closely watched 2018 re-election bid while spending some serious money to do it. Mast’s campaign has collected more than $1.5 million through Sept. 30 — far more than the other three incumbents in Palm Beach County’s U.S. House delegation. Mast’s campaign has spent $622,816, including more than $400,000...
NEW: 50,000 line up in Miami for Hurricane Irma food stamps; PB County starts Tuesday

NEW: 50,000 line up in Miami for Hurricane Irma food stamps; PB County starts Tuesday

Despite the opressive heat, a massive crowd estimated at more than 50,000 showed up today at Miami's Tropical Park to apply for special food stamps made available to victims of Hurricane Irma. The temperature soared to 89 by mid-afternoon, according to the National Weather Service. Officials told the Miami Herald that they will continue to sign up applicants until midnight or 1 a.m., though the line...
Five state parks still closed due to Hurricane Irma damage

Five state parks still closed due to Hurricane Irma damage

Three Florida parks in the Keys opened to the public Friday for the first time since Hurricane Irma, as the state looks at overall storm damage to its parks topping $55 million. John Pennekamp Coral Reef, Curry Hammock and Fort Zachary Taylor Historic state parks in Monroe County were reopened for day-use, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection announced. The announcement left just five...
Today: Florida Sen. Nelson in Puerto Rico to see Hurricane Maria aid

Today: Florida Sen. Nelson in Puerto Rico to see Hurricane Maria aid

Florida Sen. Bill Nelson will visit Puerto Rico today to inspect recovery efforts from last month’s Hurricane Maria. Florida Gov. Rick Scott and Sen. Marco Rubio have also visited Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria devastated the island on Sept. 20. About 1 million Puerto Ricans live in Florida, and more are expected to arrive in the state after Maria. Scott on Oct. 2 declared a state of emergency...
After Hurricane Irma: Keys tourism push includes images of damage

After Hurricane Irma: Keys tourism push includes images of damage

On the one-month anniversary of Hurricane Irma's landfall in the Keys, the area's tourism bureau posted a video showing the destruction caused by the storm. It was a unique way to draw visitors back to the resilient island chain at the southern tip of Florida. "This is a very unusual approach because I don’t think any tourism agency out there would show scenes of hurricane damage,"...
UPDATE: Girl, 8, dies after falling from Carnival cruise ship in Miami

UPDATE: Girl, 8, dies after falling from Carnival cruise ship in Miami

Update 2 p.m.: An 8-year-old girl has died from her injuries after falling two stories from a Carnival cruise ship on Saturday morning, according to the Miami-Dade Police Department.  Police told NBC Miami that the girl fell at 8:15 a.m. from a balcony inside the ship’s atrium to the lower deck.  Carnival Cruise line released a statement on the incident:  Original story: An 8-year-old...
Caloosa couple get $1.3 million in son’s death, still want law changed

Caloosa couple get $1.3 million in son’s death, still want law changed

Two years after their 29-year-old son was killed while bicycling home on PGA Boulevard, Raul and Susan Lozano have reached a $1.3 million settlement with an Acreage man who escaped criminal charges by saying he thought he had hit a wild hog. But the money the Lozanos got from George Meada’s insurer to settle their civil lawsuit isn’t enough, said attorney Ryan Fogg, who represents the...
Upset about remaining Irma debris? Have some patience, officials say

Upset about remaining Irma debris? Have some patience, officials say

On some streets, where leaves and branches blown down by Hurricane Irma have turned brown and brittle, it might not look like much progress has been made in the long slog to clear Palm Beach County of the estimated three million cubic yards of vegetative debris left by the storm. But based on numbers tracked for the county’s Solid Waste Authority, just under half of the debris generated by Irma...
Editorial: More independence needed for state’s utilities watchdog

Editorial: More independence needed for state’s utilities watchdog

Almost 40 years ago, the Florida Legislature tried to take politics out of the state’s Public Service Commission (PSC), the agency that’s supposed to act in the public interest in overseeing electricity, natural gas, telephone, water and wastewater services. And so it turned the elected, three-member PSC into a five-member appointed body. It hasn’t worked as planned. Quite the opposite...
Jupiter woman’s previous rape claim delays Uber driver’s rape trial

Jupiter woman’s previous rape claim delays Uber driver’s rape trial

A previous rape allegation made in New York by the Jupiter woman who claims a 57-year-old Uber driver raped her in Palm Beach County in May has rocked the local case. A trial was supposed to begin in Palm Beach County Circuit Court this month for Gary Kitchings, a foster home worker who was moonlighting as an Uber driver when he was arrested after a woman said he sexually assaulted her as he drove...
Donald Trump tells evangelicals what’s on his Christmas list

Donald Trump tells evangelicals what’s on his Christmas list

President Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago in 2016. (Allen Eyestone / The Palm Beach Post) President Donald Trump — who typically spends “that beautiful Christmas season” at Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach — made a Yuletide promise and issued a Christmas challenge to Congress today in a speech to the Values Voters Summit in Washington. “Something...
BREAKING: Stuart convenience store sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

BREAKING: Stuart convenience store sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

Thursday’s only winning Fantasy 5 ticket was sold at a Stuart convenience store, the Florida lottery said. Click here for more breaking news coverage from The Palm Beach Post Ocean Gate Petro, a store on Southeast Ocean Boulevard west of the bridge over the St. Lucie River, sold the ticket with the winning combination of 9-19-20-28-30, the lottery said. It paid $184,922.75. The ticket was a...
Former Trump Florida campaign director, from West Palm Beach, seeks key GOP post

Former Trump Florida campaign director, from West Palm Beach, seeks key GOP post

Karen Giorno chats with Lt. Gov. Carlos Lopez-Cantera at the Palm Beach County GOP’s 2016 Lobsterfest in Boca Raton. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) West Palm Beach resident Karen Giorno, the state director for Donald Trump‘s 2016 campaign when he won the Florida GOP primary by carrying 66 of 67 counties, has ...

POINT OF VIEW: Give Florida teachers a raise; pay the national average

The Florida Chamber of Commerce recently launched an interesting and useful website for Floridians called Launch My Career Florida. This new website helps people set their career goals by looking at their educational attainment and the kind of lifestyle they would like to lead. It then calculates how much they must earn to achieve that lifestyle goal. Not to be critical of the news site, but it points...
NEW: Lost after Hurricane Irma, Key West's welcome sign found

NEW: Lost after Hurricane Irma, Key West's welcome sign found

Key West's iconic "Welcome to Paradise USA" sign, which was damaged and turned up missing after Hurricane Irma, will soon once again greet visitors to the Conch Republic. "The sign is now safe and sound" and being refurbished, the Rotary Club of Key West announced today on Facebook. Key West police presented the sign to the Rotary Club, which had offered an $8,000 reward for...
Rubio joins Nelson in seeking Senate probe of Broward nursing home deaths

Rubio joins Nelson in seeking Senate probe of Broward nursing home deaths

Sens. Marco Rubio and Bill Nelson in Belle Glade last month after Hurricane Irma. (George Bennett/The Palm Beach Post) Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio wants the Senate Finance Committee to investigate the recent deaths of 14 seniors who were residents of a Broward County nursing home that lost air conditioning when Hurricane Irma hit. Democratic Sen. ...
Busch Gardens offers free admission to first responders

Busch Gardens offers free admission to first responders

First responders in Florida can now get in free to Busch Gardens if they go through Nov. 24. The Tampa theme park is offering free admission to police officers, forest rangers and more as a way to thank them for their service and dedication. In addition to the free ticket, each first responder will get four more for family or friends that are 50 percent off the regular price. Qualifying first responders...
Palm Beach County coalition organizes to help post-Maria Puerto Rico

Palm Beach County coalition organizes to help post-Maria Puerto Rico

Palm Beach County Cares, a coalition of non-profit groups, businesses and individuals, announced a series of initiatives Wednesday aimed at providing assistance to the people of Puerto Rico. The group is attempting to raise $5 million in five weeks and has coordinated with Palm Beach County to establish drop-off points for the laundry list of items Puerto Ricans need in the aftermath of Hurricane...
Florida Cabinet race drawing biggest bucks is one for Attorney General

Florida Cabinet race drawing biggest bucks is one for Attorney General

Ashley Moody, a former Hillsborough County circuit judge, has crossed the $1 million mark in contributions for her run to be Florida’s next attorney general, according to new campaign-finance numbers. But her Republican primary opponent, Rep. Jay Fant of Jacksonville, nearly matched Moody’s total by infusing his campaign with $750,000 of his own money on Sept. 30, the last day of the most...
GOP critic of Trump opens bid for Democrat Frankel’s U.S. House seat

GOP critic of Trump opens bid for Democrat Frankel’s U.S. House seat

A Republican businessman who’s critical of President Donald Trump and GOP congressional leadership has launched a campaign in the Democratic-leaning district represented by U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, and says he has put $250,000 of his own money behind the effort. Kurt Jetta of Delray Beach filed papers last week to run in 2018 for Frankel’s District 21 seat,...
Governor’s race: GOP candidates outpace Democrats 5-1 in September

Governor’s race: GOP candidates outpace Democrats 5-1 in September

Hurricane Irma put the brakes on fundraising for a few days, but the major announced and potential candidates for Florida governor ended up collecting nearly as much campaign cash in September as they did the month before. Candidates and committees raised a combined $3.1 million in September after collecting $3.4 million in August. The difference was almost entirely attributable to one committee...
Republican critic of Trump hopes to unseat Democrat Lois Frankel

Republican critic of Trump hopes to unseat Democrat Lois Frankel

Republican Kurt Jetta has opened a campaign for the seat of Democratic U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel. A Republican businessman who’s critical of President Donald Trump and GOP congressional leadership has launched a campaign for the Democrat-tilted seat of U.S. Rep. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, and says he has put $250,000 of his own money behind...
NEW: 1 man likely robbed banks in Jupiter, Boynton, Broward, FBI says

NEW: 1 man likely robbed banks in Jupiter, Boynton, Broward, FBI says

Authorities now believe the same man robbed banks in Jupiter and Boynton Beach as well as six banks in Broward County. The FBI confirmed at midday Wednesday that it believes the same person is behind the failed robbery of a Chase Bank in Jupiter on Tuesday and a successful one at another Chase Bank in Boynton Beach on Oct. 3, as well as six Broward County bank robberies, including two in one day on...
The Hurricane Irma effect on Florida’s campaign money chase

The Hurricane Irma effect on Florida’s campaign money chase

Top row, from left: Democrats Andrew Gillum, Gwen Graham, Chris King and Philip Levine. Bottom row, from left: Republicans Richard Corcoran, RonDeSantis, Jack Latvala and Adam Putnam. For a few days around the Sept. 10 landfall of Hurricane Irma, fundraising for the 2018 Florida governor’s race nearly came to a standstill. By the end of the month, however, most declared...
Hurricane Irma brings only brief pause to Florida campaign money chase

Hurricane Irma brings only brief pause to Florida campaign money chase

Hurricane Irma put the brakes on fundraising for a few days, but the major announced and potential candidates for Florida governor ended up collecting nearly as much campaign cash in September as they did the month before.. Candidates and committees raised a combined $3.1 million in September after collecting $3.4 million in August. The difference was almost entirely attributable to one committee...
Today: Scott, Putnam in D.C. to discuss Irma’s $2.5B agriculture hit

Today: Scott, Putnam in D.C. to discuss Irma’s $2.5B agriculture hit

Florida Gov. Rick Scott and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam will meet with members of Florida’s congressional delegation in Washington today to discuss the state’s estimated $2.5 billion in agricultural losses from Hurricane Irma. Putnam’s office released a report last week estimating that Irma caused more than $2 billion in crop losses and more than $500 million in additional...

POINT OF VIEW: Voters deserve fair maps. End gerrymandering.

“The fact is, gerrymandering has become a national scandal.” That was true when President Ronald Reagan said it in a 1987 speech to the Republican Governors Club. And now, 30 years later, the electoral map drawing process in America is even more shameful as craven political operatives use computers to generate partisan political results. Today’s electoral mapmaking tactics have denied...
U.S. Supreme Court wades into Florida-Georgia water war

U.S. Supreme Court wades into Florida-Georgia water war

The legal fight between Florida and Georgia over water flow into the Apalachicola River will move before the full U.S. Supreme Court. The nation’s highest court announced Tuesday that it will be setting a date for oral arguments in the case during its current term, which runs through June. RELATED: More Florida news “The exceptions to the special master’s report are set for oral...
Editorial: Online voter registration welcome, but still needs work

Editorial: Online voter registration welcome, but still needs work

Online voter registration, a system once called too risky by Gov. Rick Scott’s administration, has finally come to Florida. But the system, sought by the state’s 67 supervisors of elections for years, is still incomplete and falls short of expectations for ease of use and promotion. And given how Secretary of State Ken Detzner criticized the system and slow-walked its implementation &mdash...
POST TIME: Palm Beach town judge founded now-defunct baseball league

POST TIME: Palm Beach town judge founded now-defunct baseball league

Readers: Baseball is well into its playoffs, and we’re in the heart of football season. So how about a sports 2-parter? Next week we’ll tell you about a native son; today a favorite dad. This reporter has not been shy about the influence of longtime journalist Howard Kleinberg, who turns 85 this month and still is the best writer in the family. He started in sports, and during a recent...
NEW: Infant stolen along with running car at post office

NEW: Infant stolen along with running car at post office

A South Florida mother who left her 9-month-old in the car today while she ran into the post office was horrified to return to find both her BMW and baby missing. Police in Margate later found the car with the infant safely inside, though the thief remains at large, according to WSVN.  The car was stolen from the post office on Coconut Creek Parkway in Margate. It was found a short time...
Palm Springs man gets 20 years in prison for 21-year-old’s manslaughter

Palm Springs man gets 20 years in prison for 21-year-old’s manslaughter

By the time his life was cut short at 21 years, De’Andre Peyton stood out to his friends and family for three things — his smile, his gregarious sense of humor and his signature Mohawk, dyed bright blue. Tameka Peyton ran her thumb along the edge of her open blue sweater in a courtroom Tuesday as she told Palm Beach County Circuit Judge John Kastrenakes all of this, saying she wore...
Florida House bill would ban pro-sports stadiums on public land

Florida House bill would ban pro-sports stadiums on public land

A ban on professional sports franchises building or renovating stadiums on publicly owned land is ready to go to the full Florida House, after speeding through only one committee in advance of the 2018 legislative session. The House Government Accountability Committee on Tuesday voted 15-6 to approve the measure (HB 13), which would also prohibit the state or local governments from leasing existing...
Irma: Delay, denial complaints appear as one insurer’s outlook lowered

Irma: Delay, denial complaints appear as one insurer’s outlook lowered

A month after Hurricane Irma, consumers are starting to let state agencies know of more than 150 complaints ranging from long waits for adjusters to denial of claims, officials told a Florida Senate committee Tuesday. One issue: A rise in high hurricane deductibles, often 2 percent to 5 percent of a home’s worth, means many consumers are paying thousands of dollars out of their own pocket before...
NEW: How do you rob a bank? Man asks Google, lands in jail

NEW: How do you rob a bank? Man asks Google, lands in jail

It's not always a good idea to follow advice you find on the Internet, as one Florida man found out this week. When William Joe Johnson ran short of cash, he simply Googled "how to rob a bank," he later told police. Apparently the expert tips were not enough to keep him from getting caught. Johnson, 26, of Pinellas Park was arrested Monday in connection with a robbery last week at a credit...
Florida Senate committee pushes to expand Bright Futures

Florida Senate committee pushes to expand Bright Futures

An additional 44,000 Bright Futures students would have their scholarships expanded under a bill approved Monday by the Senate Education Committee. The legislation (SB 4), sponsored by Sen. Bill Galvano, R-Bradenton, would increase scholarship coverage for “medallion scholars” in state universities from the current $77 per credit hour to $159, or roughly 75 percent of the cost of tuition...
House panel: Replace Confederate statue with one of black educator

House panel: Replace Confederate statue with one of black educator

A statue of civil-rights activist and educator Mary McLeod Bethune moved closer Tuesday to replacing a statue of a Confederate general in representing Florida in the U.S. Capitol. The House Government Accountability Committee voted 20-1, with Jacksonville Republican Jay Fant opposed, to approve a measure (HB 139) that calls for a statue of Bethune to replace Confederate Gen. Edmund Kirby Smith in...
NEW: Gardens trust claims $1 million Florida Lottery scratch-off prize

NEW: Gardens trust claims $1 million Florida Lottery scratch-off prize

A Palm Beach Gardens-based trust will receive annual payments of $40,000 for the next 25 years after claiming a $1 million prize in a Florida Lottery Monopoly Scratch-Off game, the lottery said Tuesday. The Love to All Animals Trust purchased the ticket at the Publix Super Market in the Mirasol community on PGA Boulevard west of Florida’s Turnpike. The store also will receive a $2,000 bonus...
Ex-Santaluces High student on trial in teen’s shooting death over bike

Ex-Santaluces High student on trial in teen’s shooting death over bike

Jury selection is expected to begin Tuesday in the first-degree murder trial for Frank Quarles, the now 21-year-old man who was just 15 when investigators say he shot and killed another teen after an argument over a bicycle west of Lantana. Quarles, a former Santaluces High School student, is charged in the Feb. 8, 2012, shooting death of fellow student Michael Robertson, whose body was found outside...
Bills seek pain prescription limits and help for addicted babies

Bills seek pain prescription limits and help for addicted babies

A bipartisan effort to combat the opioid epidemic is underway in Tallahassee with lawmakers having filed five bills that address the crisis from multiple fronts. Prescriptions - SB 458, filed by Sen. Aaron Beach, R-Jacksonville, would limit opioid prescriptions for temporary pain. The bill would allow a 30-day renewal of an opioid prescription after the initial seven-day prescription. The bill also...
BREAKING: Port Salerno Winn-Dixie sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

BREAKING: Port Salerno Winn-Dixie sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

One of Monday’s three winning Fantasy 5 ticket was sold at a Winn-Dixie in Port Salerno, the Florida lottery said. Click here for more breaking news coverage from The Palm Beach Post The Winn-Dixie on Southeast Salerno Road, near the intersection with Federal Highway, sold a ticket with the winning combination of 2-3-12-16-18, the lottery said. It paid $58,942.57. The other winning tickets were...
Florida police chief's wife sentenced for 'keying' car at restaurant

Florida police chief's wife sentenced for 'keying' car at restaurant

After having dinner at a Pensacola restaurant, a woman returned to find her car scratched on the passenger side, driver side and hood with what appeared to be a key. Fortunately, she also found a note from a witness who saw the crime. Was it the work of vandals or hooligans out for kicks? Actually, it was the handiwork of the wife of the town's police chief, according to court records. After pleading...
Scott administration eyes hospitals in proposed Medicaid spending cuts

Scott administration eyes hospitals in proposed Medicaid spending cuts

Florida Gov. Rick Scott’s administration continues to target hospitals for potential Medicaid spending reductions in the coming year. The Agency for Health Care Administration’s top four proposed budget cuts for the Legislature to consider during the 2018 session would reduce Medicaid payments to hospitals by nearly $1 billion. Those reductions would be on top of nearly $500 million in...
Senate panel advances bill to set aside $50 million a year for beaches

Senate panel advances bill to set aside $50 million a year for beaches

Millions of voter-approved dollars would go annually for beach restoration, the St. Johns River and a boost to the state’s natural springs, under measures that would continue to divide up a pool of environmental preservation money. The Senate Environmental Preservation and Conservation Committee on Monday unanimously approved a pair of bills (SB 174 and SB 204) for the 2018 legislative session...
Florida woman tailgating deputy: Jesus made me do it

Florida woman tailgating deputy: Jesus made me do it

A woman in Lake County was pulled over after following a deputy's patrol car a mere inches from the bumper. Her explanation: She was on a mission from Jesus. Kristin Betz, 52, was arrested on charges of reckless driving after she swerved at the deputy three times, almost causing a crash, WKMG in Orlando reported. When stopped, she told deputies that "Jesus has commanded me" to pull...
VIDEO: Woman shot dead after running over cop in South Beach

VIDEO: Woman shot dead after running over cop in South Beach

A woman was shot and killed by police after she sped her car through the streets of South Beach and ran over a police officer, news reports say. Miami Dade Police Chief Dan Oates told NBC 6 that the woman was driving a black BMW Sunday evening when she crashed her car at 12th Street and Ocean Drive. She then drove off before hitting another car on Lincoln Road, the popular entertainment and shopping...
Palm Beach County gas price average dips 5 cents in past week

Palm Beach County gas price average dips 5 cents in past week

Palm Beach County’s average for a gallon of regular gasoline fell 5 cents from a week ago, and the drop in prices that began more than three weeks ago is expected to continue. Monday, Palm Beach County’s average stood at $2.66 a gallon. The state average dipped to $2.53 from $2.60 a week ago, according to AAA’s Fuel Gauge Report. Unlike Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, Hurricane Nate...
NEW: New danger for drivers: In-car infotainment systems, study finds

NEW: New danger for drivers: In-car infotainment systems, study finds

So what could possibly be more distracting to drivers than poking out a text message on your cellphone? Programming the infotainment system in your vehicle, according to a study from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. And, the study indicates, it’s not even close. While old-school vehicle entertainment centers were once restricted to simple dashboard knobs and dials, those systems today...

POINT OF VIEW: Nursing homes get short shrift from state, Legislature

In the aftermath of Hurricane Irma, people were stunned to learn that at least 12 South Florida nursing home residents had literally cooked to death at The Rehabilitation Center in Hollywood Hills. Florida Gov. Rick Scott even called it “unfathomable.” If you know the history of how the Florida Legislature has treated nursing home residents over the past 30 or so years, it is quite fathomable...
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