Jim Saunders - News Service of Florida

Jim Saunders is the Executive Editor of The News Service Of Florida.

Norwegian Epic cruise ship from Norwegian Cruise Line is pictured in Miami.
Lynne Sladky / ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE PHOTO

Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings and the state are battling about which court should hear a challenge to the state’s ban on so-called “vaccine passports,” with the cruise operator fighting an attempt to move the case out of South Florida.

LYNNE SLADKY / ASSOCIATED PRESS

A battle between Florida and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention about cruise-industry restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic went to an appeals court Tuesday, as federal-government attorneys also argued that a lower-court ruling should be put on hold.

STEVE CANNON / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Pointing to a “legal fiction,” two pari-mutuel facilities have filed a federal lawsuit challenging a newly approved plan for the Seminole Tribe to operate sports betting in Florida.

LYNNE SLADKY / ASSOCIATED PRESS

While saying the case “falls squarely in the middle of a constitutional no man’s land,” a federal judge has upheld a 2018 Florida law that prevents people under age 21 from buying guns.

TED S. WARREN / ASSOCIATED PRESS

COVID-19 vaccination rates lag in vast swaths of rural Florida compared to the rest of the state - a pattern that also has been seen in other areas of the country, a new report shows.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody speaks during a roundtable discussion at the White House on June 8, 2020.
Patrick Semansky / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody quickly launched an appeal Wednesday after a federal judge refused to block immigration-enforcement moves by President Joe Biden’s administration.

News Service of Florida

A prominent sheriff and a Miami police oversight panel are backing a challenge to an appeals-court ruling that could help shield the identities of law-enforcement officers involved in use-of-force incidents.

News Service of Florida

Saying the state is blowing up “tired old narratives,” Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed a measure designed to lead to a major expansion of school vouchers.

LYNNE SLADKY / ASSOCIATED PRESS

Amid a legal battle that could be decided by the Florida Supreme Court, Gov. Ron DeSantis has signed a measure that will ratchet up a ban on local gun regulations.

MasterOGarfield / Wikimedia Commons

A U.S. district judge will hear arguments Wednesday in Florida’s request for a preliminary injunction against federal restrictions that have idled the cruise-ship industry, including Jacksonville’s Carnival Ecstasy, during the COVID-19 pandemic.

News4Jax

A divided federal appeals court has overturned the conviction of former Florida Congresswoman Corrine Brown on fraud and tax charges, ruling that a juror was improperly removed from her trial because he said the “Holy Spirit” told him Brown was not guilty.

Bill Bortzfield / WJCT News

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday signed an elections overhaul that was one of the most-contentious issues of the 2021 legislative session, as opponents immediately filed a lawsuit alleging that the measure is unconstitutional.

Chris O'Meara / Associated Press

More than a decade after walking away from the governor’s office, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist launched a campaign Tuesday to try to unseat Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis in 2022.

Gov. Ron DeSantis (at podium)
News Service of Florida

A Special Session has already been called for May 17 to address gambling-related bills and an agreement reached with the Seminole Tribe of Florida, while the regular 2021 legislative session ended Friday with a traditional hanky-dropping ceremony in the fourth-floor rotunda of the Florida Capitol.

State Sen. Ray Rodrigues
News Service of Florida

In one of Gov. Ron DeSantis’ top priorities of the legislative session, the Florida Senate on Monday passed a measure to crack down on social-media companies that remove users from their platforms.

A marijuana plant
Mohammad Faisal Pirzada / WIKIMEDIA COMMONS

The Florida Supreme Court on Thursday rejected a proposed constitutional amendment aimed at allowing people to use recreational marijuana, saying it would be misleading to voters.

In this Dec. 17, 2019 file photo, Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Fla., speaks during a House Rules Committee hearing on the impeachment against President Donald Trump on Capitol Hill in Washington.
Patrick Semansky / Associated Press

Democrat Alcee Hastings, who represented parts of South Florida in the U.S. House for nearly three decades, died Tuesday after a battle with pancreatic cancer. He was 84.

FPL

With natural gas costing more than expected, Florida Power & Light customers will see increases in their monthly bills starting in May.

FPL's  Coral Farms Solar Energy Center in Putnam County is pictured.
FPL

Florida Power & Light on Friday filed a four-year rate plan that would lead to most customers seeing gradual increases in their monthly bills, with the utility saying the proposal would allow it to “continue focusing on ways to deliver low-cost electricity.”

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis fist bumps with legislators Tuesday, March 2, 2021, as he enters the House of Representatives prior to his State of the State address at the Capitol in Tallahassee.
Phil Sears / Associated Press

Gov. Ron DeSantis formally launched the 2021 legislative session Tuesday with a State of the State address that touted the state’s actions during the COVID-19 pandemic and touched on hot-button issues that lawmakers will face over the next 60 days.

Reversing course from a decision last year, a fiercely divided appeals court Wednesday said charter schools are entitled to a cut of tax dollars that Palm Beach County voters approved in 2018 for more-traditional public schools.

Corrine Brown walks into the United States Courthouse in Downtown Jacksonville in this 2020 file photo.
News4Jax

A federal appeals court appeared divided Tuesday as it heard arguments about whether to overturn the conviction of former Florida Congresswoman Corrine Brown, who contends that a juror was improperly removed from her 2017 trial because he said the “Holy Spirit” told him Brown was not guilty of fraud and tax charges.

WUSF

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday plunged back into a years-long water battle between Florida and Georgia, at times sounding skeptical of arguments that more water should be directed to Florida in a river system shared by the states.

NTSB/Florida Highway Patrol / Via Associated Press file photo

Florida senators continued moving forward Monday with a proposal to do away with the state’s longstanding no-fault auto insurance system, with trial attorneys and insurers closely watching the debate.

HEATHER SCHATZ/WJCT NEWS

COVID-19 ended a decade of record-setting tourism numbers in Florida, with the industry seeing a 34% drop in visitors in 2020 compared to the prior year.

Senate Governmental Oversight and Accountability Chairman Ray Rodrigues, R-Estero
News Service of Florida

After years of discussions about the tricky issue of overhauling Florida’s retirement system for government employees, a Senate committee Thursday approved a proposal that would shut future workers out of a traditional pension plan.

Duval County Supervisor of Elections Office exterior
Ray Hollister / WJCT News

Ending a legal battle that started before the 2018 elections, a federal judge on Monday approved a settlement in which 31 counties agreed to take steps to provide Spanish-language ballots and other materials to voters.

Gov. Ron DeSantis
News4Jax

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday proposed a record $96.6 billion state budget for the upcoming fiscal year, offering a more upbeat picture of Florida’s finances than lawmakers who will have to stitch together a spending plan as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to hamper the economy.

Manuel Balce Ceneta / Associated Press

As part of a flurry of last-minute pardons and commutations, President Donald Trump granted pardons to five former executives of WellCare Health Plans who were convicted in a case involving allegations of defrauding Florida’s Medicaid program.

Florida House of Representatives

Florida House attorneys next week will try to convince an appeals court that a former legislator should be shielded from a lawsuit filed by a one-time aide who alleges she was fired after reporting improper conduct.

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