2020 Florida Legistlature

DeSantis and local officials shut down most businesses in March to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Backing one of Senate President Bill Galvano’s priorities, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Tuesday signed a bill that will revamp a program that helps people with intellectual or developmental disabilities live in their homes and communities.

Budget Adds Health Contracts, Medicaid Changes

Mar 17, 2020
2020 florida legislature house
News Service of Florida

A proposed $93.2 billion state budget cobbled together by lawmakers for the coming year contains tens of millions of dollars in new health-care contracts and some changes to Florida’s Medicaid managed-care program.

As the stock marketed plummeted Monday morning, House Speaker Jose Oliva, R-Miami Lakes, indicated that fears about the novel coronavirus could affect the ongoing negotiations about a new state budget.

Hospitals Likely To Get $25 Million Cut In Medicaid Reimbursement

Mar 10, 2020
Tampa General Hospital

Budget negotiators on Monday agreed to reduce hospital Medicaid reimbursement rates in the current fiscal year by about $25 million.

Senate Health and Human Services Appropriations Chairman Aaron Bean told The News Service of Florida that the decision to pare the rates was made by Senate Appropriations Chairman Rob Bradley and House Appropriations Chairman Travis Cummings, both Fleming Island Republicans.

Bean and other lawmakers have been negotiating health-care issues in a conference committee.

Lawmakers Back Disabilities Change, Get Contributions

Mar 10, 2020
the Florida state capitol building

Two legislators who have sponsored bills that would allow new institutions to be built for people with developmental and intellectual disabilities received campaign contributions from the president of a company that would benefit from the legislation.

Clad with face masks, black rubber gloves and protective aprons, cleaners furiously scrubbed the Florida House chamber Monday after Speaker José Oliva announced that some lawmakers had attended events where other participants subsequently tested positive for the novel coronavirus, known as COVID-19.

Pharmacy Technician amongst two shelves of prescription pills.
Daylina Miller/Health News Florida

With little discussion, the House on Thursday teed up for passage three bills that would give more authority to pharmacists, nurses and other health-care workers such as certified nursing assistants.

The Florida House
Governor's Press Office

To help fund efforts to abate the spread of the coronavirus and hepatitis A, a top health-care budget writer said the Legislature may consider a “super line” in the Department of Health’s budget for the upcoming 2020-2021 fiscal year.

The Florida House
Governor's Press Office

A controversial proposal that would allow people with concealed-weapons licenses to bring guns to churches, synagogues and other religious institutions that share property with schools is ready to go to the House floor.

Pointing in part to a law passed in 2012, an appeals court Wednesday sided with Geico General Insurance Co. in a dispute about paying for physical-therapy services provided by massage therapists to auto-accident victims.

A proposal that would require school officials to verify that de-escalation tactics have been used before a student can be involuntarily committed under the Baker Act is headed to the House floor.

Asher Lieberman has been obsessed with diseases since he was little.

Proponents and critics reacted strongly to the Florida Legislature’s passage of a measure that will require minors seeking an abortion to get their parents' approval.

House Ready To Discuss Sentencing Reform

Feb 24, 2020

House Speaker Jose Oliva said Thursday the House is “very open” to a Senate proposal that would loosen sentencing laws for certain drug-trafficking offenses.

Lawmakers Look To Ratchet Up School Safety

Feb 21, 2020
Sen. Manny Diaz Jr.
News Service of Florida

For the third time since the February 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Florida lawmakers are on the brink of passing legislation to try to bolster school safety.

Parental Rights Proposal Causes Clashes

Feb 18, 2020
Senator Kelli Stargel
News Service of Florida

A proposed law that would establish parents’ authority to have more direct control over their children’s education and health care was approved by a Senate panel on Monday.

Mental health is on the minds of Florida lawmakers. Proposals tackling suicide prevention, psychosis treatment, and insurance are pending before the legislature.

When a child is born, the first months spent with parents can be crucial for development. A bill in Florida’s House and Senate looks to give parents with a newborn paid time off from work – but not everyone is sold on it.