State

School district analyzing state test data

School district analyzing state test data

Official school grades have not been released yet, but Santa Rosa County School District staffers are already digging into the data about student scores on the Florida Standards Assessments and End of Course Examinations from last school year. Overall, the school district did fairly well, said Bill Emerson, assistant superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Assessment. […]

FWC battling coral reef disease

FWC battling coral reef disease

Coral reefs in the Florida Reef Tract in the southern part of the state, which happens to be one of the largest reef systems in the world, are being impacted greatly by Stony Coral Tissue Loss Disease. The disease is caused by bacteria and can be transmitted through direct contact and water circulation. Read the […]

Importance of campfire safety can’t be emphasized enough

Importance of campfire safety can’t be emphasized enough

Camping is pretty much a year-round activity in Florida. And that means campfires are part of the equation. Handled properly, they bring added fun to a weekend trip. Mishandled and it can lead to big-time problems.   Read the full article in the July 11 issue of Navarre Press. Visit navarrepress.com/subscribe to view subscription options […]

Governor slashes funding for local projects

Governor slashes funding for local projects

What initially appeared to be a successful state budget session for Santa Rosa County has taken a disappointing turn, delaying multiple projects. Gov. Ron DeSantis on June 21 released his final list of vetoed items from this year’s $9.1 billion state budget, and all but one of Santa Rosa’s allocations were on the chopping block. […]

Opportunities plentiful in the great outdoors

Opportunities plentiful in the great outdoors

June was tabbed Great Outdoors Month in Florida by Gov. Ron DeSantis. The month was designated to highlight the opportunities available and the benefits of being outdoors. “Our staff works tirelessly to protect and preserve Florida’s environment, and I encourage everyone to spend more time outside enjoying natural Florida,” Department of Environmental Protection Secretary Noah […]

Insurers seek increase despite law change

Insurers seek increase despite law change

Thousands of residential property insurance customers across Florida could see reduced costs in 2019, but on the whole customers will not see cheaper insurance premiums as the result of long-sought regulatory reform. At the forefront of the insurance discussion is an amended rate filing by Florida’s insurer of last resort, Citizens Property Insurance Corporation.   […]

Knowledge is power when it comes to understanding elder law

Knowledge is power when it comes to understanding elder law

Elder law has plenty of layers to it, but legal service providers exist to help seniors navigate their way through it all and keep them informed of their rights and where to turn when they need legal help. “As they say, knowledge is power,” said Ashley Chambers, director of communications for the Florida Department of […]

Out of sight doesn’t mean out of danger when it comes to alligators

Out of sight doesn’t mean out of danger when it comes to alligators

In early June a young girl was attacked by an alligator in Leon County. She and her grandfather had gotten out of the water for a snack and spotted an alligator in the lake in which they’d just been swimming. They waited 30 minutes or so before re-entering the water.   Read the full article […]

Area lawmakers say recreational pot coming

Area lawmakers say recreational pot coming

Recreational marijuana’s legalization in Florida is inevitable and could come within three years, according to Santa Rosa County’s two members of the state House of Representatives. “The whole movement about medical marijuana has really been about recreational use and it’s going in that direction,” said Rep. Alex Andrade, R-Gulf Breeze. Addressing the Gulf Breeze Area […]

State allocates funds to widen 98 in Gulf Breeze

State allocates funds to widen 98 in Gulf Breeze

Approximately four miles of U.S. Highway 98 from Bayshore Road to Portside Drive is set to get two additional lanes. Approval of funding for construction was announced May 30. Read the full article in the June 6 issue of Navarre Press. Visit navarrepress.com/subscribe to view subscription options – or click here sign up to receive […]

Legislative session a mixed bag for school district

Legislative session a mixed bag for school district

The deadline for Gov. Ron DeSantis to sign or veto bills in 2019 has passed, and the results have left the Santa Rosa County School District with more freedom than they previously had. HB 7070, a massive and complex education bill, received the Governor’s signature May 9.   Read the full article in the May […]

Milton mayor cleared of Sunshine violation

Milton mayor cleared of Sunshine violation

The State Attorney’s Office in Pensacola said its investigation didn’t find any wrongdoing in Milton Mayor Heather Lindsay’s emailing her fellow city council members about changing the name of the Guy Thompson Community Center. Lindsay had asked Chief Assistant State Attorney Greg Marcille last week to look into concerns being expressed on social media that […]

Funding cut for BearWise program

Funding cut for BearWise program

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is looking in a different direction after funding for the BearWise program was cut out of the new state budget for the fiscal year that begins in July. Consideration had been made by state lawmakers to earmark $500,000 for BearWise, a program that provides bear-resistant garbage containers to […]

Floridians urged to buy flood insurance

Floridians urged to buy flood insurance

Floridians are less than 30 days from the start of the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season, and state officials are reminding residents to start preparing now. Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis said recent history speaks for itself.   Read the full article in the May 9 issue of Navarre Press. Visit https://navarrepress.com/subscribe/ to view subscription […]

Age-friendly designation given to Florida

Age-friendly designation given to Florida

Florida has been awarded an age-friendly designation through the AARP Network of Age-Friendly States and Communities. The initiative to create age-friendly communities and states began in 2012. The Sunshine State currently has 26 communities with the designation. The state now has it as well.   Read the full article in the May 2 issue of […]

Florida House passes school, hurricane tax holidays

Florida House passes school, hurricane tax holidays

Tallahassee (AP) — Floridians would once again enjoy sales tax holidays this year for back-to-school and hurricane supplies under legislation sent to Gov. Ron DeSantis by lawmakers. The holidays are part of a $121 million tax cut bill that passed the House 81-25 and the Senate 23-17 on Friday night. The House measure creates a […]

Florida lawmakers aim to crackdown on texting while driving

Florida lawmakers aim to crackdown on texting while driving

The Florida Senate Judiciary Committee passed a bill March 25 to make texting and driving a primary offense within the state of Florida, but it still must face the full Senate. SB 76 moved through the committee with 5 yeas and 1 nay. Read the full article in the April 4 issue of Navarre Press. […]

Concerns raised over bills to limit public records access

Concerns raised over bills to limit public records access

Several bills put forward in the Florida House and Senate have caught the attention of public records advocates. The biggest bill of concern at the start of session was SB 186 (with companion HB 7017 in the House) which exempts photographs, video and audio recordings of mass killings from public records law. Read the full […]

Generator mandate puts nursing homes in a bind

Generator mandate puts nursing homes in a bind

Nursing home operators are raising concerns about their ability to comply with a 60-day deadline requiring facilities to install generators that can provide electrical power for at least 96 hours in the event of an outage. Florida Gov. Rick Scott issued the emergency order last month in the aftermath of Hurricane Irma. The storm is […]

Florida prisoners hold little hope for parole

Florida prisoners hold little hope for parole

Parole in Florida is nearly extinct. Of the approximately 100,000 inmates incarcerated in Florida, only 4,545 are eligible for parole. And even fewer are approved. That is because the state has almost abolished parole across the board. Parole is the release of a prisoner before the completion of a sentence with conditions that a person […]

Educators wary of Scouts’ classroom pitches

Educators wary of Scouts’ classroom pitches

At first glance the “Patriotic Societies” bill that’s working its way through the Florida Legislature may seem wrapped in the American flag and no more contentious than Mom or apple pie. But House Bill 95, also known as the “Scouts Access” proposal, would mandate the right of paid Scout leaders—for both boys and girls—to make […]

Florida’s death penalty is back

Florida’s death penalty is back

“Mr. Asay, do you have any final words?” the man in the suit asked. He had a small microphone leading from his ear down into the collar of his shirt and a Florida Department of Corrections pin shimmered on his lapel. The man strapped down on the pale blue gurney replied promptly. “No sir, I […]

STOP opioid addiction

STOP opioid addiction

When Gov. Rick Scott declared the opioid abuse epidemic a state health emergency in Florida, thousands of dollars in state and federal moneys became available for treatment facilities. Lakeview Center is expanding their treatment to create a new free opioid treatment program called STOP (State Targeted Opioid Program). Opioids are a class of drugs, often […]

Florida property insurers dodge downgrades, bolster reserves

Florida property insurers dodge downgrades, bolster reserves

Despite warnings of possible widespread downgrades, Florida’s leading insurance grading agency has decided not to hand down lower marks to the majority of companies in the state. Read the full article in the March 30 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online for as little as $38 per year.

Death penalty fix fast tracked by Florida legislature

Death penalty fix fast tracked by Florida legislature

After a year of uncertainty, Florida’s death penalty law is back on track with passage of a bill intended to correct a flaw in the current statute. Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

House passes oversight bill for Visit Florida

In its first week of session the Florida House of Representatives passed two bills Friday that took aim economic programs eliminating Enterprise Florida, Inc. and restructuring Visit Florida. Read the full article in the March 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Capital punishment back on solid ground

Capital punishment back on solid ground

As the Florida Legislature inches closer to correcting the state’s death-penalty law, the Florida Supreme Court has voted to allow capital-punishment cases to proceed in a reversal of an earlier ruling. Read the full article in the March 2 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Legislation could reinstate Florida death penalty

Legislation could reinstate Florida death penalty

State Attorney Bill Eddins voiced confidence that the death penalty will be back in working order in Florida by the end of March. Read the full article in the Feb. 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Proposed legislation could eliminate Visit Florida and Enterprise Florida, Inc.

Proposed legislation could eliminate Visit Florida and Enterprise Florida, Inc.

Proposed legislation that would eliminate state tourism marketing group Visit Florida and state economic development agency Enterprise Florida, Inc. was introduced Feb. 8 to the Florida House of Representatives Careers and Competition Subcommittee. Read the full article in the Feb. 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per […]

Budget provides boost to senior services

Budget provides boost to senior services

With the 65 and older population still on the rise in Florida, the decision by Governor Rick Scott to devote $315.5 million to the Florida Department of Elder Affairs is one that makes sense. Read the full article in the Feb. 9 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 […]

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