Florida Senate

Office of Don Gaetz

The Florida Legislature is beginning the third week of the 2014 regular session.  During the session, WUWF is checking in with Senate President Don Gaetz (R-Niceville).

Recapping week two, Sen. Gaetz says the center piece of their work was unanimous passage by the Senate of the Florida GI Bill, HB 7015.  The House passed the bill during the first week of the Legislative Session.

fdle.gov

The head of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement told legislators Wednesday that the arrest of a former crime-lab chemist will lead to new precautions in handling drug evidence.

FDLE Commissioner Gerald Bailey gave the Senate Subcommittee on Criminal and Civil Justice an update on Joseph Graves -- the Pensacola crime-lab chemist – who’s accused of compromising hundreds of state drug cases.

Graves is free on $290,000 bond, with arraignment set for February 25th in Escambia County Circuit Court.  More charges may still be pending.

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses Florida’s general revenue estimate for Florida, which projects what the sales and use tax revenues will be.   The latest forecast from state economists shows an increase o f$300 million relative to the summer projection. 

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses holiday retail sales, noting that the forecast calls for a relatively soft season.  Specifically, he says Cyber Monday shopping continues to grow at a higher rate than in stores, although the rate of growth is more modest than the 8 to 10 percent clip in years past.  One of the marketing tools created to combat that trend is Small Business Saturday.