Florida Five: Gov. Scott’s ‘Florida First’ budget cuts taxes, Political advice Columba gave Jeb

Five of today’s top Florida political stories at your fingertips:

scott1Gov. Rick Scott pitches ‘Florida First’ budget of $79.3 billion – Gov. Rick Scott on Monday proposed a $79.3 billion budget for next year that would spend more on schools, cut taxes by $1 billion and eliminate nearly 1,000 more full-time jobs from the state workforce. Scott rolled out his spending plan at Harbinger, a sign-making company on Jacksonville’s south side where owner Roger Williams and dozens of his workers helped to promote Scott’s call to permanently end the sales tax on equipment used in manufacturing. Read more

The political advice Columba Bush says she gave her husband – The question for Columba Bush at a small gathering of Republican women in Miami came with evident concern and affection – and in Spanish – from longtime friend and fundraiser Remedios Diaz-Oliver: How can people outside of Florida get to know the Jeb Bush they know here in his hometown? “I decided from the beginning, from when he started out in politics, not to give him any advice,” Columba Bush said, also speaking Spanish.  Read more

Leading Democrat drops campaign for Patrick Murphy’s House seat – Melissa McKinlay, the Democrat who was viewed as the party’s front-runner in the highly contested race to replace Rep. Patrick Murphy, said Monday she will end her six-month-old campaign. In an email to supporters, McKinlay said the entrance of millionaire businessman Randy Perkins into the race would make the cost for her to win “immense” and further distract from her day job as a Palm Beach County commissioner. Read more

New bill would make Commissioner of Education elected position once more – Florida’s Commissioner of Education could become an elected position rather than an appointed one if a new bill passes through the Florida Legislature this year. The joint proposal, filed by Rep. Debbie Mayfield, R-Vero Beach, and Sen. Rene Garcia, R-Hialeah, would have several implications for the state’s highest elected official, and would drastically change the makeup of the Florida Cabinet. Read more

Medical pot closer as Florida approves 5 growers – Relief is finally in sight for thousands of Floridians who qualify for medical marijuana under a 2014 state law, although under the best case scenario the marijuana still won’t be ready until at least next summer. The state Department of Health on Monday named the five nurseries that will be allowed to grow noneuphoric marijuana for medicinal purposes under a law passed in 2014. Read more

Holiday bonus for Florida visitors: How to avoid a nightmare at Thanksgiving

For more Florida political news, visit BPR’s FLORIDA NEWS page.

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