John Outland wrote a great editorial explaining how a last minute amendment to a bill can drastically change its outcome. SB 268, originally only allowed signs on seven of Florida's greenways and trails but after an amendment added by Sen. Alan Hays (R-Umatilla), signs may now be placed on all of the state's greenways and trails if the bill is signed by Governor Scott. -Learn more about what Outland had to say on March 20,2012, here.
The Florida Independent's Virginia Chamlee published an article on March 20, 2012, regarding the recent pressure of Florida business groups to approve a set of state specific water pollution standards rather than federally drafted regulation. Florida's current narrative on water quality is considered vague and ineffective and groups hope that a numeric standard would reduce algal blooms and fish kills in Florida waterways. -Read more from this article here.
Also in The Florida Independent, Chamlee wrote an article about the opposition of environmental groups to HB 1117, a bill that that would allow zoos and aquariums to lease state conservation lands for the breeding of exotic wildlife. This bill passed in the 2012 Session but still must be signed by Governor Scott. Julie Wraithmell, Audubon Florida's Director of Wildlife Conservation had this to say on the issue: "Florida's conservation lands were acquired with public dollars to protect native imperiled wildlife; this bill's proposed use could supplant threatened and iconic Florida species with exotic". -Read more here.