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  • On the Attack 1, March31, 2015
    The Florida Senate looks like it’s poised to pass a plan that would expand Medicaid in the state which could help almost one million Floridians. But as Matt Galka tells us, some conservatives are feeling heat from their own supporters. Margarita Romo says members of Farmworkers Self Help – the group she established to provide […]
    Matt Galka
  • Testimony Nearly Non Existent at Abortion Hearing 1, March31, 2015
    There were dozens of angry women in the State Capitol today who were denied a chance to speak against a controversial 24 hour waiting period for abortions. Only two speakers, one for and one against got just seconds to make their case before the committee. The legislation requires a woman seeking an abortion to make […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Expanding Medical Marijuana 1, March31, 2015
    An expanded version of medical marijuana cleared the Senate Health Policy Committee today. The bill expands last years low THC law from five to 20 distributors and allows them to be selected by a lottery. Anneliese Clark traveled from St. Johns County on the east coast to show the committee pictures of her ten year […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Smoking in Cars with Kids 1, March31, 2015
    People who smoke in their cars with kids under 13 could be stopped by police under legislation approved five to one in a state Senate Health Policy Committee today. The fine for non moving violations ranges from $116 to $129 dollars. Sen. Arthenia Joyner of Tamp[a says the legislation is appropriate because kids in the […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Juvenile Citations 1, March30, 2015
    Lawmakers are pushing a bill that could cut down on juvenile arrests and hopefully still set kids on the right path, but as Matt Galka tells us, retailers are worried it could end up costing them. Edward Barnes says an arrest when he was a kid sent his life barreling down the wrong path. “By […]
    Matt Galka
  • Florida Aviation Expert says Lufthansa Dropped the Ball 1, March30, 2015
    Pilot too inexperienced   Florida Aviation analyst Jay Rollins spent 25 years as a Captain flying International routes for American Airlines. He now teaches aviation at a south Florida flight school and at the University of Miami. Rollins says the co-pilot of the ill fated Germanwings flight should never have been hired with 600 hours. […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Class Size Changes 1, March27, 2015
    Florida voters put class size limits into the constitution in 2002. As Matt Galka tells us, a bill passed by the Florida House would give schools a break for exceeding the class size numbers, but opponents say that’s not what voters wanted. A little more than a decade ago, Florida voters put caps on class […]
    Matt Galka
  • Uniforms Coming to a School Near You? 1, March26, 2015
    The Florida House of Representatives has given tentative approval this afternoon to make it easier for school districts to adopt standard uniform policies for kindergarten through eight grade. Under state law, uniforms are already allowed, but this legislation offers an encouragement. The legislation offers a ten dollar per student incentive for districts th […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Hitting a Donkey with a 2X4 1, March26, 2015
    One lawmaker likened legislation making major changes in the body that regulates high school sports in Florida to hitting a donkey on the head with a 2 x 4. The House Education committee today passed legislation requiring a complete shakeup of the governing organization, reorganizing its board and membership, allowing students to attend any school. […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Cards on the Table 1, March26, 2015
    Destination resort casinos, the future of greyhound racing, and renewing the compact that allows blackjack in certain places around the state. All were topics of discussion for lawmakers today, and as Matt Galka tells us, the odds are against getting many of the proposals to pass. A four hour long workshop saw legislators diving into […]
    Matt Galka

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Florida Highway Patrol Almost Disbanded

June 27th, 2011 by Mike Vasilinda

The Florida Highway Patrol has been patrolling Florida roadways since 1939. It was created to provide uniform traffic enforcement and investigation across the state, but as Mike Vasilinda tells us, there was a serious attempt this past legislative session to give the FHPs duties top local sheriffs.

Florida Highway Patrol troopers came close to wearing the green uniforms of Sheriffs deputies this past legislative session. The jobs of more than 1500 troopers were almost given to local sheriffs. It would have been the biggest outsourcing in recent history and it was backed by Governor Rick Scott. It was the Sheriffs, not the patrol, that pushed back and said no.

If a deal was worked out, the funding might be here one year and the funding could disappear in the next legislative session, Harrell Reid, president of the Florida Sheriff’s Association said.

The switch could have potentially raised local property taxes, but the fight is not over.

Tucked into a Senate Bill is legislation requiring a study of consolidating all law enforcement functions, everything from the FHP to the Fish and Wildlife Commission, Agricultural agents and more. That same legislation moved DOT officers who inspect large 18-wheelers to the Highway Patrol.

When state government reorganized in the late 1960s, law enforcement agencies were purposely kept apart so no one agency would have total control.

Rick Scott side stepped the question of why he was willing to transfer the Patrol to local sheriffs, and instead talked about what he hopes the study finds.

Its good to have a conversation about how can we do a good job with what the state ought to be involved with in law enforcement, Scott said.

The study is due before lawmakers meet in January.

Posted in Highways, Legislature, State News | 28 Comments »

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