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  • 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
  • Turf wars: Nurses vs. Doctors. Round one to the Nurses 1, March25, 2015
    A turf war over your health care options is heating up at the State Capitol. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, it has to do with giving Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners more authority at the expense of doctors. Elizabeth Markovich isn’t a doctor, but she has a Doctorate degree in nursing and more than 15 years […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • A First for Political Theatre: Bag Monster 1, March25, 2015
    Take a look at this. He’s called a bag monster and he was walking around the state Capitol today to dramatize the harm done by plastic bags. According to the Surfrider Foundation, the average family uses 500 plastic bags a year that end up in land fills or in our waterways.Holly Parker says the Foundation […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Hillsborough County Comes to the Capitol 1, March25, 2015
    A pirate stormed through legislation offices today passing out beads and posing for pictures with lawmakers and staff as part of Hillsborough day in the State Capitol. The annual fest fed cuban sandwiches to more than a thousand people and offered stunts from the Museum of Science along with exhibits from the Lowery Park Zoo […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Taxis are Uber Mad 1, March25, 2015
    The boom of ride sharing services through smart phones has ruffled some feathers in the traditional cab company community.  As Matt Galka tell us, taxis say ride sharers are breaking the rules, and the legislature is trying to fix that. Tom Villaverde says he used to work 80 hours a week selling cars. “And I […]
    Matt Galka
  • Cut My Taxes 1, March24, 2015
    Governor Rick Scott is facing some opposition to his plan to cut 673 million dollars in taxes this year., so he kicked off what he is calling his “Cut My Taxes Week”  with a booth in the state Capitol. Even the Governor is adding to the confusion with a TV spot in which he says […]
    Mike Vasilinda
  • Confederate Vets Excluded from Hall of Fame…for now 1, March24, 2015
    5 people were inducted into the Veterans Hall of Fame today, but controversy continues to swirl around three who were nominated but not chosen because they served in the Confederate army. The law as written says they must have served in the US Military. One of them was David Lang’s great grandfather, who went on […]
    Mike Vasilinda

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Pill Mill Bill Awaits Governor’s Signature

June 9th, 2009 by Anna Laura Rehwinkel

Legislation to stop the abuse of prescription drugs is forcing Governor Charlie Crist into a lose-lose situation. Signing the Pill Mill Bill could put peoples private medical history at risk, but as Whitney Ray tells us, not signing the legislation means people will continue to load up on prescription painkillers.

Beaches, theme parks, and sporting events attract people to Florida by the millions. But for some theres a darker force drawing them to the Sunshine State. Drug dealers from as far away as Kentucky flock to Florida to load up on prescription painkillers. Its a problem FDLE is working with the Federal Government to fix.

The Drug Enforcement Administration is now attempting to set up drug taskforces to address the problem of the illegal dispensing of legal drugs, said FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey.

Legislation to stop doctor shopping and shut down pill mills by creating a prescription drug database is on the governors desk. 38 other states have similar tracking programs. Attorney General Bill McCollum is urging the Crist to sign the legislation.

It is going to help us be able to help us stop a lot of this. Stop people from coming in from out of state, and let us find the few doctors who are abusing this, said McCollum.

But if the bill becomes law peoples private medical history could be at risk. Thirteen state lawmakers, some of whom voted for the legislation, are now asking Crist for a veto, because a similar database in Virginia was hacked.

The choice puts Crist between a rock and a hard place. Signing the legislation could jeopardize peoples privacy; not signing it allows drug dealers to keep shopping.

I think we need to keep track of where these drugs are and thats what Im coming down to as it relates to this bill, said Crist.

Crist says if he signs the bill, the state will protect peoples medical information. If the bill becomes law an electronic database will be set up by December of 2010 and pain clinics would register with the state and be subject to investigations.

Posted in Charlie Crist, Criminal Justice, Health, Legislature, State News | 152 Comments »

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