Florida State Wide

I would like to introduce myself. I am Sharon Day.  For almost 30 years, I was in a fast paced career in a major New York Company.  Although it was lucrative, it was not fulfilling.  I got to a point where I needed to follow my inner guidance and make the leap into entrepreneurship. For the past 20 + years, I’ve been an energy therapist, an ordained Minister, Founder of Healing Hearts Animal Sanctuary (2005), and President of 4 Your Health LLC.  I would like to share a story, which may have a profound effect upon your life.

On an ordinary day in November 2019, I received 3 calls from people who had recently attended funerals of victims of suicide. Each person questioned why this had to happen, with hints of blaming God.  After the last call, saddened beyond words, I knelt and prayed, “God, give me a tool to help humanity.” Continue reading

Dear Friends,

Thank you for taking the time out of your day to read this country undertaker’s column and for shouldering the responsibility of being an informed citizen that cares about what happens in this state and country.

Many different feelings strike me as we look around at what is happening in the world today, but the strongest feeling that keeps rising to the top…is gratefulness. Grateful that we still live in a country where we have an incredible amount of freedom. A few weeks ago, the world watched the situation unfold in Afghanistan (thanks to Joe Biden’s complete lack of competency) where we saw images of mothers throwing their children over barbed wire in hopes that some friendly troops might take them out of the country. We saw Afghan youths clinging to U.S. cargo planes as they took off, only to come crashing back to the earth when they found they could hold on no longer. Such disturbing images remind us that freedom is that dear and most days we have no idea how fortunate and blessed we are to live in America. Let us keep the people of Afghanistan in our prayers that they may one day enjoy the freedoms that we do in this country and let our spirit of gratefulness glorify our heavenly father. Continue reading

During the District’s 60-year history, new laws established through the decades have helped the District protect water quality and natural systems. Here’s a look at some of the key legislation and programs established:

Save Our Rivers: The program, established in 1981, allowed the District to acquire lands for the purposes of water management, supply and protection. The first major land acquisition using Save Our Rivers funding was the Green Swamp West property. The protection of this corridor has

Green Swamp Withlacoochee

been vital because of the land’s ability to slow the flow of floodwaters, sustain rivers and streams, and store surface water.

Water Quality Assurance Act: The passing of this act in 1983 gave water management districts additional responsibilities including plugging all known abandoned artesian wells. This new District responsibility had a major impact on the state’s water quality because these abandoned wells were often a source of water contamination by allowing poor quality water from lower aquifers to invade drinking water of the Upper Floridan aquifer. The plugging of these wells led to cleaner drinking water for District residents.

Wetlands Protection Act: This 1984 legislation formally recognized the value wetlands have in protecting water quality and preserving the state’s natural habitat. As a result of the act, District staff began to regulate activities that impact the wetlands, which eventually led to the development of the District’s current Environmental Resource Permitting program.

SWIM Act: In 1987, the Florida Legislature passed the Surface Water Improvement and Management (SWIM) Act to protect, restore and maintain

Rock Ponds

Florida’s highly threatened surface water bodies. The District’s SWIM program evaluates priority water bodies, identifies potential problems and implements projects to improve their water quality or habitat. Since the program’s start, 375 water quality and natural systems restoration projects have been completed or are ongoing.

Clean Waterways Act: This 2020 legislation gives state agencies authority to address water quality and water supply issues affecting Florida’s waterbodies. This legislation included additional regulation of septic tanks as a source of nutrients, updated stormwater rules and increased exploration of potable reuse as an alternative water supply.

Photo credits: Southwest Florida Water Management District. See more

Continue reading

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody is suing Google for illegally and unfairly maintaining a monopoly on the app store for Android devices. Google allegedly uses exclusionary conduct relating to the Google Play Store for Android mobile devices and Google Billing. This antitrust lawsuit is the newest legal action against the tech giant, claiming anticompetitive, illegal and unfair business practices. The suit accuses Google of using its dominance to unfairly restrict competition with the Google Play Store, harming consumers by limiting choice and driving up app prices. Attorney General Moody joins a coalition of 37 attorneys general in filing the lawsuit.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Time and time again, we have seen Google use its power in the tech industry to unscrupulously exploit the marketplace. Google’s manipulation of app distribution on Android devices forces consumers into using Google’s services to purchase apps—resulting in a 30% commission charge on in-app payments.

“The tech giant’s monopoly on Android app purchases significantly hinders other in-app payment processors from entering the marketplace, leaving consumers with no other options when seeking to download apps. We will not allow Google to continue to monopolize an entire sector—eliminating competition and harming consumers.” Continue reading

TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—In the midst of the 2021 Atlantic Hurricane Season, Attorney General Ashley Moody traveled to Osceola County to highlight the No Scam Price Gouging Reporting App that is available in both English and Spanish. At a news conference hosted by the Osceola County Sheriff’s Office, Attorney General Moody highlighted the first-of-its-kind app that allows consumers to report allegations of price gouging during a declared state of emergency in real time directly to the Attorney General’s Office. The app allows users to attach pictures and copies of receipts directly from smartphones when reporting suspected price gouging.

Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “The No Scam app has helped thousands of consumers report outrageous price increases during declared states of emergency, in English and Spanish. As this year’s hurricane season is already underway, I am encouraging all Floridians to download this free app to be ready to help us fight price gouging.” Continue reading

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Governor Ron DeSantis, Lt. Governor Jeanette Nuñez, Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis,  Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM) Director Kevin Guthrie, Surfside Mayor Charles Burkett and Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava are at the Surfside Building Collapse site to receive a briefing of the situation, tour site damage and coordinate state resources.

Early this morning, the State Watch Office received a report regarding the collapse of the Champlain Towers South building in Surfside. Local fire rescue teams immediately responded and began search and rescue efforts.

Governor DeSantis hosted a press conference on the site to provide an update about the disaster and ongoing state response efforts. Remarks from Governor DeSantis and FDEM Director Kevin Guthrie are available.

State response efforts include:

FDEM has deployed State Emergency Response Team personnel to assist response teams. Continue reading

~ Targeted School Improvement Funds will Elevate Students, Teachers and School Leaders in 149 Struggling Schools ~

PETERSBURG, Fla. – Governor Ron DeSantis announced that the Florida Department of Education awarded $44 million in federal Unified School Improvement Grant (UniSIG) funds to support 149 struggling schools in 29 districts.

“It can be hard for struggling schools to recruit and retain top talent, and today I’m proud to announce $44 million to address this problem,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “I have consistently said that the number one way to create great opportunities for our students is by ensuring they have great teachers. In Florida, we will continue to take a strategic, data-driven approach to make our schools the best in the country.”

“Frederick Douglass said it best when he said, ‘It is easier to build strong children than repair broken adults,’ and with these funds we ensure our students have world-class educators in front of them each and every day,” said Commissioner of Education Richard Corcoran. “Our number one goal is to ensure each of Florida’s 2.9 million public school students receive a world-class education and are given the tools to succeed. These funds help accomplish that important work by incentivizing great educators with proven track records of success to come help our most vulnerable students in our most vulnerable schools succeed.” Continue reading

PETERSBURG, Fla. –Governor Ron DeSantis joined the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) to survey the impacts of the red tide bloom affecting southwest Florida and the Tampa Bay area. Governor DeSantis also provided an update on the state’s response efforts which include funding to cover cleanup costs, increased water quality monitoring and use of innovative technology to continuously image water samples.

“I directed all agencies to take an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ approach to respond to the red tide impacting the Tampa Bay area,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “I want to thank DEP and FWC for their constant presence in response to this bloom. My administration is committed to continue ensuring that local needs are met to address this red tide event.”

“DEP and FWC continue to prioritize frequent, direct coordination with the local governments that are on the front lines of this response effort,” said DEP Interim Secretary Shawn Hamilton. “Governor DeSantis has made it clear that the state is committed to ensuring impacted communities have the support they need today and moving forward. DEP will maintain its presence in the region to ensure continued collaboration and the most comprehensive event response.” Continue reading

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Following a townhall event focused on the crisis in Cuba on Hannity last night, Cuban-American leaders in Florida are commending Governor Ron DeSantis’ call for the Biden Administration to take action and provide internet access for the people of Cuba who are standing up against communist oppression.

Over a week ago, Governor DeSantis sent a letter to President Joe Biden urging the federal government to provide internet access into Cuba remotely to support those demanding freedom from their repressive Communist government. There has not yet been a response to the letter.

“As the people of Cuba continue to rise against the tyrannical regime, they deserve our nation’s support,” said Lt. Governor Jeanette Nuñez. “The Governor urged the Biden Administration to take immediate action to provide a pathway for unfettered access to the internet, but we have yet to receive a response. My parents fled the oppression orchestrated by the communist Castro regime. As a Cuban-American, I stand with our brothers and sisters on the island who desperately yearn for freedom.”

Attorney General Merrick Garland on Monday formally prohibited federal prosecutors from seizing the records of journalists in leak investigations, with limited exceptions, reversing years of department policy.

The new policy largely codifies the commitment Garland made in June, when he said the Justice Department would abandon the practice of seizing reporters’ records as part of efforts to uncover confidential sources. It aims to resolve a politically thorny issue that has long vexed Justice Department prosecutors trying to weigh the media’s First Amendment rights against the government’s desire to protect classified information.

“The United States has, of course, an important national interest in protecting national security information against unauthorized disclosure,” Garland wrote in his memo. “But a balancing test may fail to properly weight the important national interest in protecting journalists from compelled disclosure of information revealing their sources, sources they need to apprise the American people of the workings of their government.” Continue reading

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