Florida State Wide

Yesterday, devastating news unfolded in Miami at Florida International University where a 950-ton pedestrian bridge collapsed on unsuspecting motorists. My heart absolutely breaks for everyone involved with this tragedy. My condolences go out to all the victims and their families during this difficult time. I am also praying for the heroic first responders that rushed to the scene and worked throughout the night to search and recover victims. May God bless and comfort the whole community of FIU and the City of Sweetwater.

Earlier this week, my Office of Statewide Prosecution stood with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies to announce the conclusion of a massive investigation into more than five million dollars’ worth of SNAP/EBT benefits fraud. SNAP/EBT benefits, better known as food stamps, is funded by hardworking taxpayers. These benefits are designed to help some of our most vulnerable Floridians, such as seniors, children and underprivileged families. Anyone who is willing to defraud this system—which intends to aid those who need it most—is shameful. Continue reading

(NAPSI)—Each year, millions of people head to Cape Canaveral, Florida to visit an iconic American landmark where history has been made and innovation continues today. Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex brings to life the epic story of the U.S. space program, offering a full day or more of fun. It allows visitors to get as close as possible to NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, with exclusive tours and an in-depth look at the space program’s past, present and future.

With so much to do, see and explore, visitors should plan ahead. Following are insider tips on five must-see and -do experiences while visiting: Continue reading

3/9/18

Working together, this week, our state took quick action to secure Florida schools and protect students. I am extremely proud of Governor Rick Scott and every member of our legislature who voted in favor of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Act, to make sure what happened in Parkland, less than a month ago, never happens again.

This legislation provides $400 million to hire more school resource officers and increase mental health services, gives law enforcement more authority to keep weapons out of the hands of mentally ill people courts have deemed a threat, bans bump stocks, raises the age to purchase a firearm and more crucial steps to keep students safe. Continue reading

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Governor Rick Scott today made the below statement regarding U.S. News & World Report again ranking Florida as the best state in the nation for higher education. The ranking was determined based on several factors, including the time it takes Florida students to complete two and four-year higher education programs, the cost of tuition and fees, and the burden of debt for college graduates. This is the second year in a row Florida has ranked number one.

Governor Scott said, “It is great news that Florida has again ranked first in the nation for higher education. Over the past seven years, we have made major investments in our higher education system and challenged colleges and universities to become more affordable while fully preparing students to be ready for a great job upon graduation. A leading higher education system helps strengthen our state as the best place for families, students and job creators to succeed. We will continue to work together to hold the line on tuition and support our state colleges and universities so families and students can continue to achieve their dreams in Florida.”

By Florida Senator Baxley

Session is now over halfway done!

We have been hard at work the past five weeks ensuring good public policy makes its way to the people of Florida.

So far, we have passed out of the Senate SB 192, which clarifies that elected officials are allowed to ride to functions together and participate in fact finding missions without violating Florida Sunshine Laws.

We have also worked on SB 1048 which deals with Church Protection. This bill will allow churches to authorize concealed weapons permit holders to carry on church property for the purpose of protections. We want to empower law-abiding citizens to protect themselves and others and stop violent crime. Continue reading

ORLANDO, Fla. – Today, Governor Scott announced Lockheed Martin, a global security and aerospace company, will be expanding in Orlando and creating 500 new jobs. The average wage of the 500 new jobs will be $87,064. The company will also invest more than $50 million in their Orlando facility. Lockheed Martin currently employs over 14,000 Floridians at 73 locations.

Governor Scott said, “I am proud to announce Lockheed Martin is continuing to invest in Florida by creating 500 new jobs as part of their expansion in Orlando. Lockheed Martin is already a major job creator for our state, and our commitment to cutting taxes and making Florida business-friendly is making it easier for this global business to continue to create thousands of opportunities for Florida families.”

Lockheed Martin employs approximately 100,000 people worldwide and is principally engaged in the research, design, development, manufacture, integration and sustainment of advanced, technology systems, products and services. Continue reading

PARKLAND, Fla. – Following the tragic shooting at Marjory Douglas High School in Parkland yesterday, Governor Scott has continued to be briefed by law enforcement and emergency management officials and has remained in communication with state leaders to ensure all state resources are made available. The Governor has also spoken with President Trump, the Department of Homeland Security and local school officials. Governor Scott remains in Broward County and additional details regarding the Governor’s schedule will be made available throughout the day. Governor Scott also announced that he will be organizing meetings with state and local leaders in Tallahassee next week to discuss ways to keep Florida students safe, including school safety improvements and keeping guns away from individuals struggling with mental illness.

Information on the State of Florida’s response:

Florida Department of Education

  The Department of Education has offered to send crisis management teams to Broward County. These individuals have extensive experience in crisis situations and stand ready to coordinate with Broward County’s crisis management teams to provide any additional community support.

  Grief counseling is available today, Thursday, February 15, 2018, at a number of locations in Broward County for anyone needing support following the tragic events at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School: http://bit.ly/2o7sIkw Continue reading

LifeSouth is in critical need of type O blood donors. Trauma patients and patients in surgery have sharply increased the usage of type O blood, and supplies have hit a critically low level.

Type O blood can be received by all blood types, so having it available for emergencies is critical. If you are type O, LifeSouth asks you to donate today. If you do not know your blood type, now is a great time to donate and find out. Donating with LifeSouth directly impacts the community and those treated at area hospitals.

Anyone 17 or older, or 16 with parental permission, weighing a minimum of 110 pounds and in good health can donate blood. A photo ID is also required. Go to www.lifesouth.org to find a blood drive near you, or call toll-free 888-795-2707 for additional information.

 

Attorney General Pam Bondi issued the following statement regarding the tragic death of Brevard County Sheriff Deputy Kevin Stanton during a traffic accident Saturday Morning:

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of Deputy Kevin Stanton and my heart breaks for his family, the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office and our entire law enforcement community. Law enforcement officers wake up every day not knowing what dangers lie ahead—yet they still choose to serve. Deputy Stanton died a hero, and our state is better because of brave men and women like him.”

Attorney General Pam Bondi issued the following statement on unanimous approval of HB 21 by the Health & Human Services Committee. This approval means HB 21 will now be heard on the floor of the Florida House of Representatives.

“The national opioid crisis is devastating our country and Florida is fighting this crisis head-on. This legislation represents our state’s continued efforts and commitment to tackling this epidemic and save lives. Thank you, Representative Boyd, for sponsoring this life-saving legislation and making this mission one of your top priorities.”

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