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Florida headlines

WATCH: Gator goes after Florida man trying to take picture

WATCH: Gator goes after Florida man trying to take picture

A guy had a close call with a gator after he strayed from a path to take a better picture.  The man left other hikers on the boardwalk of La Chua Trail at Paynes Prairie in Gainesville and encroached on a mother alligator’s space as she was sunbathing, according to Ben Boukari Jr, who posted the video on Facebook.  <div></div><br><div id="fb-root"...
JUST IN: Coast Guard searching for missing 50-year-old diver

JUST IN: Coast Guard searching for missing 50-year-old diver

Coast Guard crews are searching for a 50-year-old male diver who failed to surface Saturday half a mile east of Lauderdale-by-the-Sea. A Fort Lauderdale Coast Guard boat crew and a Miami Coast Guard helicopter crew are conducting the search in conjunction with the Broward Sheriff’s Office, the Fort Lauderdale Fire Department and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Coast...
‘Really do believe’ this is the end of my political career

‘Really do believe’ this is the end of my political career

TALLAHASSEE — Jeff Atwater, a former Florida Senate president, is leaving the statewide elected position of chief financial officer on June 30 with more than a year remaining in his second four-year term. A day later, the Republican will start a new job as a vice president at Florida Atlantic University, where he will manage finances and economic development. Atwater was briefly in the running...
Senate ‘replace’ bill hazardous to Floridians’ health

Senate ‘replace’ bill hazardous to Floridians’ health

So Sen. Marco Rubio is hedging on the finally unveiled Senate health-care bill, saying he first needs to huddle with state Republican leaders. He also wants to talk to health-care providers, insurers and patient advocates. A good idea. Why couldn’t the rest of his fellow Republicans in the Senate have thought of that before writing such a heartless bill? What Rubio is likely to hear is widespread...
Free-market principles don’t always work for health care

Free-market principles don’t always work for health care

Recently, The Palm Beach Post published a thoughtful commentary arguing that the elimination of Florida’s Certificate of Need (CON) program would foster competition and in return, result in improved access to medical care and controlled costs. I have the greatest respect for the author of that piece, my colleague Wael Barsoum, president of Cleveland Clinic Florida, but I believe the issue at...
Florida homestead law a ‘debtor’s haven’? Not for Beverly Hills dentist

Florida homestead law a ‘debtor’s haven’? Not for Beverly Hills dentist

Facing a $2.1 million court judgment in California, longtime Los Angeles resident Michael Motamed suddenly got a yen to move to Florida, plunking down $1.5 million for an oceanfront condominium in Palm Beach. But attorneys representing a former UCLA pre-med student who suffered horrific injuries in 2012 when Motamed’s Mercedes plowed into her said there was nothing mysterious about...
Cerabino: Gov. Scott’s citrus canker veto makes state a deadbeat debtor

Cerabino: Gov. Scott’s citrus canker veto makes state a deadbeat debtor

When it comes to deadbeat debtors, it’s hard to beat the state of Florida. If you don’t believe me, ask the hundreds of thousands of Florida homeowners who’ve been waiting for more than a decade to be fairly compensated for the more than half-million healthy backyard orange, grapefruit, lime and lemon trees that were chopped down by the state during its ill-fated Citrus Canker Eradication...
U.S. Rep. Mast to headline for controversial California congressman

U.S. Rep. Mast to headline for controversial California congressman

U.S. Rep. Brian Mast is headlining a fundraiser Sunday for a California congressman who has drawn criticism for pro-Russia comments and for suggesting the United States should work with ISIS against mutual enemies. Mast, a Palm City Republican who lost both legs serving in the U.S. Army in Afghanistan, is one of several Republicans in Congress seen as vulnerable by Democrats in their quest to recapture...
Trump card: Democrat Bill Nelson invokes president 7 times in money plea

Trump card: Democrat Bill Nelson invokes president 7 times in money plea

Florida Gov. Rick Scott and President Donald Trump are teaming up against Sen. Bill Nelson, says Nelson in a new fundraising appeal. When President Donald Trump paused at a Miami rally last week to urge Florida Gov. Rick Scott to run for U.S. Senate next year, he pretty much wrote Sen. Bill Nelson‘s next fundraising appeal to...
NEW: Woman accused of hiding babies’ body parts arrested in Florida

NEW: Woman accused of hiding babies’ body parts arrested in Florida

A woman wanted in connection with the discovery of babies’ body parts under a home in North Carolina was arrested in Jacksonville on Wednesday.  Police said Bridgette Smith, 31, had a warrant for her arrest for concealing a death, WJXT reports.  In April 2016  Smith’s mother discovered trash bags containing body parts of two babies in a crawl space under her house...
Mosquito population — and complaints — up; aerial spraying to begin

Mosquito population — and complaints — up; aerial spraying to begin

Palm Beach County is getting bitten on both ends of its mosquito control program, with one resident saying the county has not done enough to control the burgeoning population while another has raised concerns about a chemical used when the county does spray. Jean Bacon said standing water from recent heavy rains has spawned a bumper crop of biting bugs that are posing an increasing health threat to...
Gov. Rick Scott says he’ll ‘fight for Florida’ in Washington next week

Gov. Rick Scott says he’ll ‘fight for Florida’ in Washington next week

Florida Gov. Rick Scott during a January visit to Washington for President Donald Trump’s inauguration. Florida Gov. Rick Scott says he’ll visit Washington next week to “fight for Florida” on the details of a Senate health care bill. Scott  joins Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio in publicly professing wariness over...
Dem candidate says he talked to FBI, is ‘not the focus of an investigation’

Dem candidate says he talked to FBI, is ‘not the focus of an investigation’

Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum at the Florida Democratic Party’s Leadership Blue gathering in Hollywood last week. Tallahassee Mayor and 2018 Democratic governor candidate Andrew Gillum said he spoke to the FBI last week about  corruption allegations in his city and was assured he is “not the focus of an investigation.” The Associated Press reported that the FBI...
Ted Deutch wants role probing whether Donald Trump obstructed justice

Ted Deutch wants role probing whether Donald Trump obstructed justice

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BboQ3dEyKIg&w=492&h=307] U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton, and other Democrats on the House Judiciary Committee are stepping up efforts to get their committee to look into whether President Donald Trump obstructed justice in the ongoing probe over Russian influence in the 2016 election. Rep. Ted Deutch,, D-Boca...
JUST IN: Six area Fantasy 5 winners this week; payouts top $500,000

JUST IN: Six area Fantasy 5 winners this week; payouts top $500,000

Six winning Fantasy 5 tickets have been sold since Sunday in Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast, bringing the lucky players a combined $519,942.52 in prizes, Florida Lottery records show. The two most recent winning tickets were sold Thursday in Port St. Lucie and Boca Raton, the Florida Lottery said. All four winners statewide claimed $47,701.71 for winning numbers 2-18-22-25-33. The Port St...
Appeals judges hear arguments in deputy’s shooting of Dontrell Stephens

Appeals judges hear arguments in deputy’s shooting of Dontrell Stephens

Using a legal tactic that has protected the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office before, the agency’s attorney on Friday asked a federal appeals court to throw out a $22.4 million verdict for shooting victim Dontrell Stephens because the jury wasn’t asked if sheriff’s Sgt. Adams Lin made a simple mistake when he opened fire on the unarmed man. “Our defense was always that...
Dalia Dippolito lawyers say sleeping juror requires new trial

Dalia Dippolito lawyers say sleeping juror requires new trial

Allegations that a sleeping juror was on the panel that convicted Dalia Dippolito could be the basis for yet a fourth trial on charges that she tried to have her husband killed. Defense attorneys for Dippolito, 34, on Thursday filed a motion for a new trial and a request to interview jurors in Dippolito’s case based on claims that one of the jurors slept through key parts of the case. RELATED...
BREAKING: Feds explain sweet deal for billionaire sex offender Epstein

BREAKING: Feds explain sweet deal for billionaire sex offender Epstein

Federal prosecutors went on the offensive this month, denying allegations that they bowed to pressure from billionaire Palm Beach resident Jeffrey Epstein and his high-priced lawyers at the expense of dozens of teenage girls he sexually abused. In their first public comment since 2007 — when they negotiated a deal that allowed Epstein to escape federal charges — prosecutors filed...
Say it ain’t so! This Disney park listed as top tourist trap

Say it ain’t so! This Disney park listed as top tourist trap

What would you say is the worst tourist trap in Florida? No, not St. Augustine’s cheesy wax museums or the Skunkape Headquarters in the Everglades? Yes, that’s a real thing. According to Business Insider, it’s Epcot. The world-is-your-oyster destination, where one can eat, drink or just travel around the globe in a day’s time was ranked as the worst tourist trap in the...
Why Bill Clinton is coming to South Florida…

Why Bill Clinton is coming to South Florida…

Former President Bill Clinton with U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Delray Beach, in Belle Glade in October. (Damon Higgins/The Palm Beach Post) Former President Bill Clinton will be in Miami Beach on Saturday to address the U.S. Conference of Mayors annual meeting. Clinton will speak at the “City Livability Luncheon” at the Fountainebleau Hotel. More than 250 mayors...
Rubio a maybe, Nelson a no on Republican health care bill

Rubio a maybe, Nelson a no on Republican health care bill

Florida Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio will decide whether to support a Senate GOP health care bill “on the basis of how it impacts Florida,” his office said Thursday. Rubio’s office characterized the just-unveiled legislation as a work in progress as four other Senate Republicans — Ted Cruz of Texas, Rand Paul of Kentucky, Mike Lee of Utah and Ron Johnson of Wisconsin &mdash...
Health care: Marco Rubio wants Florida input; Bill Nelson slams GOP bill

Health care: Marco Rubio wants Florida input; Bill Nelson slams GOP bill

Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio, left, and Democratic Sen. Bill Nelson. Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio will decide whether to support a Republican health care bill “on the basis of how it impacts Florida,” his office said this afternoon. Rubio’s office characterized the just-unveiled legislation as a work in progress as four other Senate Republicans ...
Donald Trump: No Comey ‘tapes’ — at least not by me

Donald Trump: No Comey ‘tapes’ — at least not by me

President Donald Trump stops his motorcade to greet supporters on Bingham Island near Mar-a-Lago in March. (Melanie Bell/The Palm Beach Post) It was one of the most talked-about tweets of President Donald Trump‘s time in office. A few days after firing FBI Director James Comey, Trump took to Twitter in what proved to be an unsuccessful effort to head...
Could State Attorney Dave Aronberg challenge Rep. Brian Mast?

Could State Attorney Dave Aronberg challenge Rep. Brian Mast?

Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg, left, and U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City. When Democrat Dave Aronberg was a state Senator in 2009, some Dems tried to recruit him to run for a Palm Beach-Treasure Coast congressional seat then held by Republican U.
JUST IN: 19-year-old Fla. mother shot in head in road rage incident

JUST IN: 19-year-old Fla. mother shot in head in road rage incident

A suspect is at large and a 19-year-old Florida woman is in a medically-induced coma following a shooting that stemmed from an apparent case of road rage, WSVN in Miami reports. Alyssa Sanchez was shot in the head after her boyfriend got into an argument with occupants of another car Monday in Miami, police say. Sanchez was the only one shot, but the car was riddled with bullets. The victim's...
EXCLUSIVE: Mast vulnerable in DCCC poll, could face Aronberg challenge

EXCLUSIVE: Mast vulnerable in DCCC poll, could face Aronberg challenge

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee won’t say if Palm Beach County State Attorney Dave Aronberg is the candidate its polling shows leading U.S. Rep. Brian Mast, but an internal memo indicates the DCCC believes recapturing a majority in the U.S. House of Representatives in 2018 is still a possibility despite losing a high-profile race in Georgia on Tuesday. Aronberg was mentioned...
Noted Boynton Beach Trump fan Gene Huber in Iowa for rally

Noted Boynton Beach Trump fan Gene Huber in Iowa for rally

President Donald Trump with Boynton Beach resident Gene Huber at a rally in Melbourne n February. (Joe Raedle/Getty Images) Boynton Beach man Gene Huber, who gained instant fame in February when President Donald Trump called him onstage at a rally in Melbourne, doesn’t limit his support of the president to Florida events.
BREAKING: Port St. Lucie Publix sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

BREAKING: Port St. Lucie Publix sells winning Fantasy 5 ticket

A Publix Super Market in Port St. Lucie sold one of three winning Fantasy 5 tickets in Tuesday night’s drawing, the Florida Lottery said. The ticket, bearing the number combination of 13-15-16-24-31, was sold at the Publix at East Port Plaza at U.S. 1 and Walton Road. It paid $63,302.62 and was a Quick Pick, meaning the lottery’s computers chose the number combination for the player. The...
JUST IN: Florida woman who let snake bite 1-year-old won't face charges

JUST IN: Florida woman who let snake bite 1-year-old won't face charges

A Florida woman who intentionally let a snake bite her young daugher to teach her to be afraid of the reptiles will not face child abuse charges, Fox 13 in Tampa reports. Chantelle St. Laurent of Sebring posted a video on Facebook earlier this month that showed her 1-year-old being bitten by a snake as the girl reached into a container to touch it. It showed the snake striking and the girl crying...
VIDEO: Florida runaway spotted on roof of his own house

VIDEO: Florida runaway spotted on roof of his own house

An 11-year-old boy who had previously run away from home apparently wanted to try a different approach in sending a message to his parents Tuesday when he climbed up on the roof of his own house, WPLG in Miami reports. "I have good grip and body muscle, so I just climbed up," Angel Gort of Hialeah told WPLG's Local 10 News.  The TV station's cameras captured the boy on the roof...
Uber drivers: Picking up loose ends of Florida’s new law

Uber drivers: Picking up loose ends of Florida’s new law

Starting next month, Florida will have a uniform set of rules for Uber and other ride-hailing services. The new law establishing statewide regulations for what are formally called “transportation network companies” was passed to supersede the varying and sometimes conflicting regulations enacted by counties and cities. For example, did you know that Uber drivers in Miami can...
Anthony Pugliese owes Subway estate $13 million, judge rules

Anthony Pugliese owes Subway estate $13 million, judge rules

Delray Beach developer Anthony Pugliese should pay the estate of the late Subway founder Fred DeLuca nearly $13 million in connection with a failed partnership to build a sprawling community on ranch land in Central Florida, a Palm Beach County judge ruled this month. Sorting out the meaning of a verdict a jury reached in February, Circuit Judge Donald Hafele ruled that Pugliese should pay $4 million...
Citizens OKs 9.3% rate hike in Palm Beach County, water damage caps

Citizens OKs 9.3% rate hike in Palm Beach County, water damage caps

The board of state-run Citizens Property Insurance Corp. voted Tuesday to raise homeowner premiums 6.7 percent statewide for 2018 — and 9.3 percent in Palm Beach County — and make sweeping changes in the way it handles water claims, drawing fire from contractors who say the moves go too far. Homeowners would face a $10,000 limit on payments for claims such as a plumbing leak from the state&rsquo...
JUST IN: Florida woman’s alleged crime spree nets $19, arrest

JUST IN: Florida woman’s alleged crime spree nets $19, arrest

A Florida woman is accused of pulling off a pair of robberies that don’t bode well for a lucrative future in crime. Authorities say Kristi D. Holliman, 35, of Gainesville took $8 from a donation box for a literacy foundation at a Dollar General store Monday, according to the Gainesville Sun. Holliman then stole cash from the driver of a pickup truck parked outside of a Save-A-Lot store...
Messages, maps point to missing teens’ trip to Bahamas before storm

Messages, maps point to missing teens’ trip to Bahamas before storm

The day before Austin Stephanos and Perry Cohen rode out from the Jupiter Inlet to the Atlantic Ocean in July 2015 for what would be the last time, the boys messaged at least one friend to ask if the friend wanted to come along fishing the following day. “Me and Austin r (siq) crossing to the Bahamas tomorrow come with us,” Cohen wrote in an Instagram message to a friend, according to...
BREAKING: Lone winning Fantasy 5 ticket sold in The Acreage

BREAKING: Lone winning Fantasy 5 ticket sold in The Acreage

The lone winning ticket in Monday’s Fantasy 5 drawing was sold at The Publix at The Acreage, the Florida Lottery said. The ticket, bearing the number combination of 13-17-26-27-30, paid $183,043.84, the lottery said. The ticket was a Quick Pick, meaning the lottery’s computers chose the number for the player, and it cost the player nothing to buy. It was a free ticket won in an earlier...
Florida health officials move forward with medical marijuana plans

Florida health officials move forward with medical marijuana plans

Florida health officials have laid out a new process to implement the voter-approved constitutional amendment broadly legalizing medical marijuana, as they attempt to meet deadlines included in the November ballot measure. The latest proposed rule came as the Department of Health awaits Gov. Rick Scott’s signature of a medical-marijuana bill adopted by lawmakers during a special session this...
Court dismisses suit against Army Corps over Lake Okeechobee releases

Court dismisses suit against Army Corps over Lake Okeechobee releases

A federal appeals court Monday rejected a lawsuit alleging that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ management of water flowing from Lake Okeechobee into the Caloosahatchee River caused pollution problems in the Southwest Florida waterway. A three-judge panel of the Atlanta-based appeals court — in a case described in one document as a “procedural thicket” — upheld a lower...
Bill expanding renewable energy tax break in Florida becomes law

Bill expanding renewable energy tax break in Florida becomes law

Florida Gov. Rick Scott late Friday signed 13 bills, including a measure that will carry out a constitutional amendment aimed at boosting the use of solar energy in the state. Lawmakers passed the renewable-energy bill (SB 90), after nearly 73 percent of voters approved the constitutional amendment during last August’s primary elections. The amendment called for extending a renewable-energy...
JUST IN: Winning Fantasy 5 tickets sold in Delray Beach, Hobe Sound

JUST IN: Winning Fantasy 5 tickets sold in Delray Beach, Hobe Sound

The winning tickets in Sunday night’s Fantasy 5 drawing were sold in Delray Beach and Hobe Sound, the Florida Lottery said. The tickets bear the number 4-5-19-25-34 and pay $89,096.32 each. The Delray Beach ticket was sold at the Community Food Store at Northwest Fifth Avenue and Northwest Second Street. The Hobe Sound ticket was sold at the Circle K convenience store at Federal Highway just...
Biden: Democrats ‘need to refocus our attention’ on uniting America

Biden: Democrats ‘need to refocus our attention’ on uniting America

More than seven months after Donald Trump’s presidential victory stunned Democrats, former Vice President Joe Biden offered yet another critique of his party’s failings — and perhaps a rationale for his own 2020 candidacy — in a Saturday night speech that faulted Democrats for losing touch with a crucial segment of voters. Biden accused Trump of appealing to “some...
Leading Democratic candidates for Florida governor agree on big issues

Leading Democratic candidates for Florida governor agree on big issues

It was literally a love fest on Saturday when the three leading Democratic candidates for Florida governor — Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, former U.S. Rep. Gwen Graham and businessman Chris King — got together for a forum. “I love you, Andrew. I don’t know Chris as well, but I love you, too …We need a whole lot more love in this world,” Graham said at one point...
Editorial: Scott’s double-whammy against public education in Florida

Editorial: Scott’s double-whammy against public education in Florida

With one stroke of his pen last week, Gov. Rick Scott set back progress for Florida’s public universities. And with another stroke, he did astounding damage to the state’s K-12 public schools. Nice work, Governor. In the first instance, Scott vetoed most of the policy initiatives sought by Senate President Joe Negron in hopes of catapulting Florida campuses into the nation’s top...
Cerabino: No ifs, ands or butts. Sign me up for an intersection

Cerabino: No ifs, ands or butts. Sign me up for an intersection

There’s a new law that directs the Florida Department of Transportation to create honorary designations on roadways, bridges, and other transportation facilities around the state. So far, the state is planning to spend $43,000 to install 37 designation markers to honor those who have already been selected. These people include boxer Muhammad Ali, who is getting a boulevard in Miami-Dade, and...
VIDEO: Jury takes just 90 minutes to convict Dippolito of murder solicitation

VIDEO: Jury takes just 90 minutes to convict Dippolito of murder solicitation

Circuit Judge Glenn Kelley was just about to bring Dalia Dippolito’s jury into the courtroom to send them home for the weekend when they beat him to the door with a knock After just 90 minutes of deliberations that capped six days of testimony in her murder solicitation retrial, Dippolito, 34, appeared to instinctively understand that word of a verdict that quickly did not bode well for...
Democrat Pam Keith to seek U.S. House seat of GOP’s Brian Mast

Democrat Pam Keith to seek U.S. House seat of GOP’s Brian Mast

Democrat Pam Keith, a former U.S. Navy and NextEra Energy attorney who impressed progressive activists with her 2016 U.S. Senate bid, will run for the Palm Beach County-Treasure Coast congressional seat held by freshman Rep. Brian Mast, R-Palm City. Keith announced in May that she was exploring a campaign for Mast’s District 18 seat, and she plans to make her candidacy official today. Mast won...
To cheers in Miami, Trump attacks Obama, tightens some Cuba policies

To cheers in Miami, Trump attacks Obama, tightens some Cuba policies

A thousand miles from the special counsel and other tumults of Washington, President Donald Trump basked in the adoration of cheering Cuban Americans here Friday as he reversed former President Barack Obama by signing an order to tighten some travel and trade restrictions with communist Cuba. In a sweltering theater in the city’s Little Havana community, Trump shared a stage with Cuban...
NEW: Jobless rate plunges to 10-year lows in Florida, Palm Beach County

NEW: Jobless rate plunges to 10-year lows in Florida, Palm Beach County

Break out the black turtlenecks. The jobless rate hasn’t been this low in Florida and Palm Beach County since the year Steve Jobs announced the iPhone, 2007. In Florida, the unemployment mark hit 4.3 percent, officials announced Friday. That was the lowest since August 2007. And in Palm Beach County, it held its ground at 3.9 percent in numbers not seasonally adjusted, matching the lowest since...
In Miami, Trump predicts Cuban regime’s ‘end is within the very near future’

In Miami, Trump predicts Cuban regime’s ‘end is within the very near future’

MIAMI — President Donald Trump announced a tightening of some restrictions on communist Cuba today as he shared  a stage with Cuban dissidents, Bay of Pigs veterans and family members of those killed 21 years ago when Cuba’s military shot down a civilian plane belonging to a pro-refugee group.
Greyhound races are practically a thing of the past, except in Florida

Greyhound races are practically a thing of the past, except in Florida

PALM BEACH, Fla. — During the third race on a recent sweltering Sunday at the Palm Beach Kennel Club, a sleek black greyhound named Atascocita Laden broke from the pack early in the 545-yard course and sprinted to a decisive victory. There was nothing overly surprising about the result: Atascocita Laden was a favorite, and the tip sheets had him picked to finish in the money. For some Americans...
Buyback of conservation zone near Boynton lauded by environmentalists

Buyback of conservation zone near Boynton lauded by environmentalists

Preservationists and environmentalists are on the verge of another victory in their quest to limit building in Palm Beach County’s Agricultural Reserve, a 22,000-acre farming and land conservation zone west of Boynton Beach and Delray Beach that has been under increasing development pressure. County commissioners advanced a proposed budget Tuesday that includes $3 million to begin...
‘Angry as hell’: Distracted crashes up, father wants action on phones

‘Angry as hell’: Distracted crashes up, father wants action on phones

Steve Augello remembers feeling “angry as hell” when his daughter died in a crash he believes was caused by another driver’s texting. Now Augello has another reason to be upset: inaction by state lawmakers. Records requested by The Palm Beach Post show crash reports listing distracted driving rose 10 percent in Florida in 2016. Injuries associated with texting rose 45 percent in...
Like every big story, election meddling by Russia has Florida angle

Like every big story, election meddling by Russia has Florida angle

The developments in the evolving story of Russia’s meddling in our presidential election are happening at such a frenetic pace that it’s easy to barely soak in one revelation before it’s overcome by another one. So let’s just slow this down for a moment and take a look at something that should concern every Florida voter, no matter whom you supported in the last election. Mixed...
LATEST: Boynton man accused of trafficking girl facing federal charges

LATEST: Boynton man accused of trafficking girl facing federal charges

A suburban Boynton Beach man arrested last month on state human-trafficking charges involving a teen girl is now facing federal charges as well. Marco Vinicio Orrego, 31, was indicted on charges of sex trafficking in a minor, production of child pornography, distribution of child pornography and enticing a minor to engage in sexual activity, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said Thursday. Read The...
Watch live: Trump returns to Florida to unveil Cuba policy

Watch live: Trump returns to Florida to unveil Cuba policy

Donald Trump campaigning at the Bay of Pigs Museum in Miami in October. (Al Diaz/Miami Herald) President Donald Trump, a South Florida fixture during his first three months in office, ends two months of exile from the Sunshine State today today to announce he’s reversing some of former President Barack Obama‘s policies toward communist Cuba.
NEW: Disney World to honor boy killed by alligator on resort beach

NEW: Disney World to honor boy killed by alligator on resort beach

Disney World will erect a statue in honor of the 2-year-old boy killed last June while playing on the beach at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort and Spa, it was announced Wednesday on the one-year anniversary of his death.  A sculpture of a lighthouse, the symbol of the Lane Thomas Foundation, will be added to an undisclosed site, the Orlando Sentinel reports. Graves was visiting with...

POINT OF VIEW: Water managers are good at keeping public land public

People flock to the Sunshine State to enjoy the abundant opportunities to enjoy Florida’s natural lands and waters. However, if properties have a “No trespassing” or “Closed to the public” sign, citizens and visitors are prevented access. These closures are particularly vexing on public lands paid for by taxpayers. Floridians and visitors want generous access to Florida&rsquo...
Florida Supreme Court upholds property tax shield for public marinas

Florida Supreme Court upholds property tax shield for public marinas

Rejecting arguments by a private marina that said it was put at a competitive disadvantage, the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday ruled that city-owned marinas are not required to pay property taxes. The unanimous decision, which focused on marinas owned by the city of Fort Pierce and the Fort Pierce Redevelopment Agency, raised constitutional questions about whether property-tax exemptions for government...
NEW: South Fla. trapper's graphic killing of gator outrages residents

NEW: South Fla. trapper's graphic killing of gator outrages residents

Residents of a South Florida neighborhood that's a sanctuary for wildlife were shocked to see a trapper kill an alligator Wednesday and drag it away when they expected it to be relocated, WSVN in Miami reports. The trapper was called by the homeowner's association at Snapper Creek Townhouses in southwest Miami-Dade County out of fear for the safety of children in the neighborhood, a resident...
Man who yelled gay slurs at men in Keys avoids jail, offers to hug victims

Man who yelled gay slurs at men in Keys avoids jail, offers to hug victims

A man who admitted threatening and yelling gay slurs at two men in the Florida Keys avoided jail and offered to hug his victims. Brandon Ray Davis, 30, of North Carolina harassed Kevin Paul Taylor and Kevin Seymour in Key West in February, according to FLKeysNews. Davis yelled that the men were in “Trump country” before following them for several blocks and eventually crashing...
Scott signs fentanyl mandatory minimum, pollution notification bills

Scott signs fentanyl mandatory minimum, pollution notification bills

Gov. Rick Scott signed measures Wednesday that will impose minimum mandatory sentences on people who traffic in the dangerous drug fentanyl and require increased public notification of pollution incidents. The bills were among 28 that Scott signed into law late Wednesday. Scott also vetoed a higher-education measure (SB 374) that was a top priority of Senate President Joe Negron, R-Stuart. The measure...
Scott vetoes Negron priority of higher-education changes

Scott vetoes Negron priority of higher-education changes

With a stroke of his veto pen, Gov. Rick Scott on Wednesday wiped out most of the higher-education policy initiatives that had been advanced by Senate President Joe Negron during the 2017 legislative session. Scott vetoed a 291-page bill (SB 374), objecting to a proposed enrollment cap on baccalaureate degrees for the 28 state colleges and citing the Legislature’s decision to cut the state college...
Florida governor approves pay raises for state workers

Florida governor approves pay raises for state workers

Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed legislation Wednesday providing across-the-board pay raises to state employees for the first time since 2013, but remained mum on whether he would also approve a wide-ranging and controversial education bill. In a ceremony for veterans at the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles in Tallahassee, Scott signed the compensation legislation (SB 7022), a key priority...
Why a Florida road near you may have new honorary name

Why a Florida road near you may have new honorary name

Fifty Florida roads, highways and bridges have new honorary names, after Gov. Rick Scott signed SB 368 into law on Wednesday. The measure, which goes into effect July 1, creates new designations for facilities around the state, naming them in honor of fallen soldiers, law enforcement officials and community members. The bill also directs the Florida Department of Transportation to put up &ldquo...
Florida Rep. DeSantis: Words with gunman ‘confrontational…little odd’

Florida Rep. DeSantis: Words with gunman ‘confrontational…little odd’

The early morning conversation outside a baseball field in Alexandria, Va., struck U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis, R-Ponte Vedra Beach, as “weird” at the time — and chilling later. DeSantis is certain that he and Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-S.C., encountered James Hodgkinson of Belleville, Ill., moments before police say Hodgkinson opened fire on a Republican baseball practice. The gunfire injured...
NEW: Gov. Scott signs opioid abuse bill, 27 other measures into law

NEW: Gov. Scott signs opioid abuse bill, 27 other measures into law

Gov. Rick Scott signed 28 bills into law on Wednesday, including a measure to enhance penalties for people who abuse fentanyl, a dangerous synthetic opioid that can be up to 100 times more powerful than morphine. Scott also signed a bill that creates property tax exemptions for first responders and their surviving spouses, and another that directs the Florida Department of Transportation to conduct...
Exiting Atwater pushes for benefits-assignment bill sought by insurers

Exiting Atwater pushes for benefits-assignment bill sought by insurers

Readying to leave the state Cabinet at the end of the month, Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater said Wednesday that lawmakers need to address an insurance practice that critics argue is driving up homeowners’ rates. Lawmakers this spring could not agree on changes to the practice known as “assignment of benefits.” RELATED: Read The Post’s coverage of the Florida Legislature...
Commentary: The ‘Year of Now or Neverglades’

Commentary: The ‘Year of Now or Neverglades’

When the history of Everglades restoration is written, 2016 will be remembered as a pivotal point. As record rains during the winter of 2015-16 tested the capacity of Lake Okeechobee, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers shunted the excess into the Caloosahatchee and St. Lucie rivers. Altogether, nearly 1 trillion gallons of polluted Lake Okeechobee water was flushed east and west, devastating the ecosystems...
Commentary: Attacks on sugar cane farmers untrue and unfair

Commentary: Attacks on sugar cane farmers untrue and unfair

A column published in The Palm Beach Post (“It’s time to halt Big Sugar’s assault on the Everglades,” June 7) about sugar cane farming painted a wholly incomplete and inaccurate picture of the industry, which has done more to help Everglades restoration than any other private entity to date. The op-ed asserted that farmers are causing “environmental damage,” which...
Editorial: Too many decisions made in private, by just three people

Editorial: Too many decisions made in private, by just three people

A modest proposal: For efficiency’s sake, why don’t we just tell the Florida Legislature to stay home and let the state’s laws and spending be decided by only the governor, the president of the Senate and the speaker of the House? Because that, in essence was the story of the 2017 legislative session. To a remarkable degree, the outcome was the product of the personalities and...

Rep. Alcee Hastings endorses Andrew Gillum for governor

Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Delray Beach, (left) is endorsing Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings of Delray Beach, the dean of Florida’s congressional delegation and a go-to figure for Democrats seeking to turn out black voters, announced today he’s supporting Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum in the 2018 Democratic primary for governor.
BREAKING: Winning Fantasy 5 ticket sold at West Palm-area Publix

BREAKING: Winning Fantasy 5 ticket sold at West Palm-area Publix

A Publix Super Market west of the city sold one of three winning Fantasy 5 tickets in Tuesday’s drawing, the Florida Lottery said Wednesday. Get the latest Breaking News from The Post The ticket bearing numbers 4-8-23-25-27 will pay each winner $62,776.03, according to the lottery’s website. The store that sold the ticket is in Palm Beach Plaza at Jog Road and Okeechobee Boulevard. Other...
Dippolito trial: Prosecutor, defense expert spar for hours

Dippolito trial: Prosecutor, defense expert spar for hours

On Wednesday, after Dalia Dippolito defense expert Tim Williams told a jury that police bungled the investigation into her alleged plot to kill her husband at every turn, Assistant State Attorney Craig Williams stood up and turned towards jurors as he asked his first question. “So,” the prosecutor asked, “these are just the worst cops ever?” RELATED: Complete Dippolito case...
County budget plan: Sheriff, IG lose on funding requests; enviros win

County budget plan: Sheriff, IG lose on funding requests; enviros win

The entreaties of Palm Beach County’s inspector general did not bear fruit Tuesday night, as county commissioners did not change the proposed budget to include money for the four additional positions he sought. But the budget, which would go into effect on Oct. 1 and hold property tax rates steady for a seventh straight year, does include $3 million to begin the three-year, $9 million process...
VIDEO: Ex-Boynton cop testifies against department in Dippolito trial

VIDEO: Ex-Boynton cop testifies against department in Dippolito trial

Boynton Beach police officials made mistakes that severely compromised the 2009 investigation into Dalia Dippolito’s alleged plan to have her husband killed, a former member of the department told the jury Tuesday in her murder solicitation trial. Now retired Boynton Beach police Detective Frank Ranzie, the first defense witness in Dippolito’s third trial, said much of his gripe with the...
Public school backers urge Scott to veto bill helping charter schools

Public school backers urge Scott to veto bill helping charter schools

With a controversial and wide-ranging education bill now on his desk, Florida Gov. Rick Scott faces intense pressure from both sides as he weighs whether to sign or veto the legislation. Rumors have begun floating that Scott will sign HB 7069 later this week, but officially the governor maintains that he hasn’t made a final decision. Scott received the bill late Monday; he has until June 27...
Appeals court weighs Florida State University’s gun policies

Appeals court weighs Florida State University’s gun policies

A Second Amendment group asked an appeals court Tuesday to direct Florida State University to revise language in the student Code of Conduct about guns on campus to match state law. The request to a three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal came as the group Florida Carry continued a legal battle with the university that started with “erroneous” information about guns in a...
EXCLUSIVE: Newsmax’s Ruddy tells Post basis of Trump-Mueller comment

EXCLUSIVE: Newsmax’s Ruddy tells Post basis of Trump-Mueller comment

West Palm Beach resident and Mar-a-Lago Club member Christopher Ruddy says he doesn’t need a TV appearance to send a message to President Donald Trump. Ruddy, the CEO of Boca Raton-based conservative outlet Newsmax Media, fueled a firestorm of speculation when he told Judy Woodruff of PBS NewsHour on Monday that Trump was considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller and that doing so would...
Florida man accused of putting dirt in woman’s gas tank, trapping her in car

Florida man accused of putting dirt in woman’s gas tank, trapping her in car

A Florida man is accused of battering his ex-girlfriend after trapping her in a car and putting dirt in the gas tank. Michael Avery Hooks, 25, of Gainesville allegedly tried to follow her Sunday as she drove away from home in her neighbor’s car, according to the Gainesville Sun. When she returned, she spotted him knocking on her door. Hooks allegedly approached the vehicle and put dirt...
Scott, Corcoran tout Lake Okeechobee dike money in West Palm

Scott, Corcoran tout Lake Okeechobee dike money in West Palm

Florida Gov. Rick Scott, in Palm Beach County Tuesday to highlight the state’s $83 billion budget, saluted President Donald Trump as a “partner” in efforts to accelerate repairs to the Herbert Hoover Dike around Lake Okeechobee. Scott and House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land-O’Lakes, recently transformed from fiscal foes to budget buddies, stopped by the South Florida...
Florida man threatens his family with fake bomb

Florida man threatens his family with fake bomb

A Florida man is accused of threatening his family with a fake bomb. Christopher Benedict Rouse, 37, of Baker approached his wife Thursday with an object that contained wires and a calculator and told her that it was a bomb that would detonate in sunlight, according to NWF Daily News. Rouse also took the family car and ran over the air conditioning unit of his home, according to reports. Rouse&rsquo...
West Palm Beach man fans latest Trump-Mueller rumor

West Palm Beach man fans latest Trump-Mueller rumor

Newsmax CEO Christopher Ruddy of West Palm Beach on PBS Newshour Monday. West Palm Beach resident Christopher Ruddy, the CEO of Newsmax Media, sent the Washington rumor mill spinning on Monday when he told PBS that President Donald Trump is considering firing special counsel Robert Mueller.
Two cops at heart of Dalia Dippolito probe punctuate state’s case

Two cops at heart of Dalia Dippolito probe punctuate state’s case

Promises to a lover that they would be in “paradise island” once her husband was in jail and later assertions to a fake hit man that she was “5,000 percent” sure she wanted her husband dead punctuated on Monday what could be the last full day of state testimony in Dalia Dippolito’s third trial on charges she tried to have her husband killed. Prosecutors on Monday neared...
Ex-Florida Rep. Troutman launches bid for agriculture commissioner

Ex-Florida Rep. Troutman launches bid for agriculture commissioner

Former state Rep. Baxter Troutman entered the race for state agriculture commissioner on Monday, priming his Republican bid for a Cabinet seat with $2.5 million of his own money. “For two decades, I’ve been building a business and continuing my work in Florida agriculture,” Troutman, of Winter Haven, said in a statement. “Real experience and success in the private sector is...
Atwater’s last day as Florida CFO is June 30, then takes job at FAU

Atwater’s last day as Florida CFO is June 30, then takes job at FAU

Florida Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater formally delivered his letter of resignation on Monday, five months after announcing he was leaving for a job at Florida Atlantic University. The letter said June 30 — the end of the current fiscal year — will be Atwater’s final day in the statewide job. He’s held the Cabinet office, which has duties ranging from overseeing the state...
EXCLUSIVE: Ex-commish Aaronson lobbies protege on GL Homes Ag Reserve plan

EXCLUSIVE: Ex-commish Aaronson lobbies protege on GL Homes Ag Reserve plan

Palm Beach County Commissioner Mary Lou Berger, who has raised the ire of a powerful coalition of residential associations for refusing to oppose a GL Homes plan for more development in the Agricultural Reserve, has been lobbied on the issue by her former boss, Burt Aaronson. Palm Beach County lobbyist registration documents indicate Aaronson, signed on to lobby for GL on May 9. Berger now...
Doctors win legal battle over Florida’s ‘docs vs. glocks’ law

Doctors win legal battle over Florida’s ‘docs vs. glocks’ law

Six years after Florida lawmakers tried to stop doctors from asking patients about guns, health-care providers have emerged victorious in a legal battle as the state did not appeal a federal-court ruling striking down major parts of the 2011 law. The controversial measure, dubbed the “docs vs. glocks” law and supported by the National Rifle Association, included a series of restrictions...
POINT OF VIEW: Fighting the opioid epidemic in the exam room

POINT OF VIEW: Fighting the opioid epidemic in the exam room

The United States is in the midst of a public health crisis. Opioid addiction is taking mothers, fathers and children; destroying lives, breaking up families. The problem is particularly insidious in Florida, which has become a destination for rehabilitative services and sober home living. In the first part of 2016, approximately 2,600 people died from opioid overdoses in the state and the epidemic...
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