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New Area Code Options Dialed Up for Panhandle

September 7, 2019 - 7:00am

With available numbers for the 850 area code expected to run out in March 2022, an additional area code is being pushed for the entire Northwest Florida region.

Florida Public Service Commission staff members were told Friday that the North American Numbering Plan Administrator, which oversees telephone numbering across the U.S. and other countries, supports what is known as an all-services “overlay.”

Traffic Won't Be Going All-One-Way for Evacuees

August 31, 2019 - 7:00am
Florida's Turnpike near the I-75 intersection on Sept. 8, 2017

Florida doesn’t plan to turn portions of highways into all one-way traffic when evacuation orders are issued for Hurricane Dorian.

Gov. Ron DeSantis said the state has cleared shoulders on interstates and highways and will lift tolls as evacuations orders are issued. But implementing a process known as “contraflow” isn’t currently being considered.

The reason: All one-way traffic could interfere with storm preparation.

Dorian Likely to Hit as a Cat 4, but Where? Still a Mystery

August 30, 2019 - 7:00am
Dorian Watch

All 67 Florida counties are now under an emergency order as the state awaits a powerful hit, likely early next week, from Hurricane Dorian.

Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday expanded throughout Florida a state of emergency he had declared a day earlier in 26 counties along the East Coast and in some inland areas. The expansion came after DeSantis received updates on the storm during visits to the National Hurricane Center in Miami and the Brevard County Emergency Operations Center.

'Hurricane' Dorian Could Hit Florida as a Category 3

August 28, 2019 - 2:00pm
A Bridgetown, Barbados supermarket at this hour

Floridians, particularly those along the East Coast, are being told to prepare for a major hurricane that could hit the state during the Labor Day weekend.

The storm, which remained named Tropical Storm Dorian on Wednesday, is projected to reach the state Sunday or Monday as a potential major hurricane, with winds topping 110 mph.

Dorian Likely to Soak Much of Florida by Labor Day

August 28, 2019 - 6:00am
5 p.m. Tuesday projection:  Florida landfall Sunday morning

Most of Florida could see a wet Labor Day weekend, with the East Coast facing tropical-storm force or stronger winds from Tropical Storm Dorian.

Search to Continue for Bodies at Dozier School

August 27, 2019 - 6:00am
Erin Kimmerle at a Dozier excavation site

Forensic experts are gearing up to conduct a high-tech sweep of the grounds at a notorious Northwest Florida reform school where survivors remain convinced bodies of long-lost boys are still concealed.

University of South Florida forensic anthropologist Erin Kimmerle said Monday her team intends to return next month to the former Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys in Marianna to conduct light imaging detection and ranging tests, known as LIDAR.

NRA's Marion Hammer Fires Another Round at Proposed Assault Weapons Amendment

August 23, 2019 - 5:15pm
Marion Hammer, left, and supporters at Friday's meeting

Florida’s top gun lobbyist took a second shot Thursday at a proposed constitutional amendment that seeks to prevent the possession and sale of assault weapons.

Marion Hammer, a lobbyist for the National Rifle Association and Unified Sportsmen of Florida, appeared before state economists for the second time in a week to clarify her opposition to the proposal she claims would result in all rifles and shotguns being outlawed in the state.

Backroom Briefing: Office Stable under 'Frenetic' Governor

August 23, 2019 - 6:00am
Ron DeSantis and Matt Gaetz

Gov. Ron DeSantis views his office as a stable work environment, even after several staffers, including one of his top lieutenants, announced exit plans a little more than seven months after the chief executive was sworn in.

Florida to Share Voter Registration Data with Other States

August 22, 2019 - 6:45am
Wednesday's ERIC announcement

Gov. Ron DeSantis has agreed to allow Florida to join a national electronic center to exchange voter registration data with other states, an effort long-sought by county supervisors of elections.

DeSantis said Wednesday Florida will become the 29th state to participate in the Electronic Voter Registration Information Center, known as "ERIC," a consortium of states known that share voter registration information.

House Democrats Seek Long-Shot Special Session on Gun Violence

August 21, 2019 - 6:00am

Florida House Democrats say they’ve rounded up more than enough support to require votes from both Republican-dominated chambers of the Legislature to determine if there is any appetite for a special session dealing with gun violence.

But such an effort may be futile, as Republican leaders are likely to quash the effort.

“President Galvano does not support calling a special session,” Senate President Bill Galvano’s spokeswoman Katie Betta said in an email, when asked about the Democrats' move on Tuesday.

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