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  • Walton County Votes to Replace Confederate Flag…With Different Confederate Flag 1, July28, 2015
    The confederate flag was still flying over a panhandle county’s courthouse Tuesday morning. Matt Galka was at the county commission meeting where officials voted on whether or not to keep the divisive symbol up. In Walton county located in Florida’s panhandle, it’s commonplace to see a truck decked out in Confederate flags. But the confederate flag […]
    Matt Galka
  • State, Tribe Fire Off Letters On Gaming 1, July27, 2015
    The deal allowing blackjack and other table games at Seminole casinos in the state is just about up. As Matt Galka tells us, the state is wondering when the Tribe will end those games. Cards are still being dealt at Seminole Casinos around the state…for now.  The provision in the Seminole Compact that gives the […]
    Matt Galka
  • State Seeks E-Cig Regulations from Feds 1, July24, 2015
    The state’s top doctor is calling for warning labels on e cigarette devices and vials of liquid nicotine., It is already illegal for anyone under 18 to use or be sold e cigarette products, but as Mike Vasilinda tells us, being illegal hasn’t stopped an explosion in underage use. State lawmakers make it clear last […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • ADA Turns 25 1, July24, 2015
    Life wasn’t easy for Americans living with disabilities a quarter of a century ago. But as Matt Galka tells us, the 25th anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities act is a cause for celebration, but doesn’t mean the work is done. John Kemp says there’s no comparison between 2015 and 1990. “It’s so much better […]
    Matt Galka
  • Attorneys General Want Big Five Phone Companies to Crack Down on Robo Calls 1, July23, 2015
    If you’ve ever scrambled to answer your phone only to hear a recorded message, you are not alone. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, 45  State Attorneys General, including Florida’s, want the phone companies to do something about the calls. The come on a daily basis. Calls offering something for nothing. “It’s already been paid for, […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Change the Vote 1, July23, 2015
    A bipartisan group of activists wants to drastically change the way candidates are selected. As Matt Galka tells us, the group says it’s an effort to include everyone. Closed primaries determine Florida’s partisan candidates for Congress, the state legislature, Governor and cabinet.  But one group wants to change that. “Currently we have over 27 percent […]
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  • New Idea Could Bring More Lawyers to State 1, July22, 2015
    Floridians in need of a lawyer could have many more options in the near future.  As Matt Galka tells us, the Florida Bar association is mulling over an idea to allow out of state lawyers to practice in the Sunshine State. Florida isn’t seeing a shortage of lawyers by any means.  The more than 100 […]
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  • National Guard Armory Threatened 1, July21, 2015
    A threat is made to a National Guard facility down the street Florida’s Capitol. As Matt Galka tells us, it comes in the wake of a shooting tragedy in Tennessee less than a week ago, and after the Governor took steps to secure facilities around the state. Bomb sniffing dogs roamed the parking lot of […]
    Matt Galka
  • A Marriage Uptick in Florida 1, July21, 2015
    A new report from the Department of Health shows slightly more people got married last year than the year before, ending what has been a decade long decline, And as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the number of divorces is also falling. Alma Reyes Rivera tided the knot with her beau Louis in a civil ceremony […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Jeb Returns to Mount Tallahassee 1, July20, 2015
    Former Florida Governor and now Presidential Candidate Jeb Bush returned to the state Capital he once called Mount Tallahassee to talk about the changes he made in state government, and as Mike Vasilinda tells us, the changes he hopes to make in Washington. Jeb bush was the first Republican governor of FL to serve two […]
    Mike Vasilinda

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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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