News

News
1:55 pm
Mon January 27, 2014

Citizens Rolls Out Property-Insurance Clearinghouse

Credit freedigitalphotos.net

A program aimed at shrinking billions of dollars in liability from Florida’s state-run insurance company launches Monday, Jan. 27.

Citizens Property Insurance is widely known as Florida’s insurance company of last resort.  In actuality, it's become a major player in the insurance marketplace.  State lawmakers felt that Citizens’ $500 billion of risk was too much for Floridians to shoulder.  So they've been trying to shift policyholders from Citizens into the private market.

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Community Contributor
8:46 am
Mon January 27, 2014

'Pretty Silicon Beach': Tech Entrepreneur Responds To Phillip Levine

Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine was quoted Jan. 22 in the Washington Post saying "Miami Beach is never going to be a high tech hub. As much as it sounds great, it's sexy, that's not who we are."
Credit Daniel DiMassa

Editor's Note: This is a community contributor post that has been edited for clarity.  The views expressed here are those of the author and not WLRN or WLRN-Miami Herald News.

My name is Daniel DiMassa and tech start-ups are more of a religion than passion to me.

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Bunches of Bitcoins
7:54 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Digital Currency Conference Hits Miami Beach

Latin House Burger & Taco Bar customer pays in Bitcoin.
Credit Hillary Lindwall/WLRN

Hundreds of Bitcoin users flocked to Miami Beach this weekend for the North American Bitcoin Conference

Bitcoin is a form of digital currency that Florida Atlantic University finance professor Charles Evans says will change the way international business is conducted.

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News
4:53 pm
Fri January 24, 2014

Medical Pot Campaign Reaches Its Petition Signature Goal

Credit Vlado / Flickr CC

Elections officials certified on Friday, Jan. 24, that the campaign to legalize medical marijuana in Florida collected enough qualified signatures to put the proposed amendment on this November's ballot.

Campaign manager Ben Pollara says his organization, United We Care, gathered more than 1 million signatures to come up with the 683,149 needed to win a ballot spot.

He is now starting to fundraise for what he says will be an expensive and difficult campaign.

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News
11:55 am
Fri January 24, 2014

E-Cigarette Sales To Minors Now A Crime In Three Broward Cities

E-cigarette use -- or 'vaping' -- is on the rise nationwide.
Credit freedigitalphotos.net/stockimages

If you’re under 18 and try to buy a pack of cigarettes in Florida – well, you can’t.

And three Broward County cities have passed laws to ensure the same thing happens with the trendy new electronic alternative to a pack of “smokes.”

This week, Weston banned the sale of e-cigarettes to minors.  The ordinance makes Weston the third Broward County city to try to regulate the sale of the increasingly popular devices where kids are concerned.  Sunrise and Lighthouse Point recently passed similar ordinances.

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Community Contributor
10:09 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Tech CEO To Phillip Levine: Miami And Miami Beach Are One

Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine was quoted Jan. 22 in the Washington Post saying "Miami Beach is never going to be a high tech hub. As much as it sounds great, it's sexy, that's not who we are."
Credit ANDREW ULOZA / Miami Herald

Editor's Note: This is a community contributor post.  The views expressed here are those of the author and not WLRN or WLRN-Miami Herald News.

Mayor Levine,

Congratulations on your installation as the Mayor of Miami Beach. When I first moved to Miami I lived on Ocean Drive, and it still holds a warm place in my heart.

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Weird News
9:41 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Job Posting: Crocodile Handlers Wanted In South Florida

Yikes! Think you can handle this?
Credit nps.gov

If you’re an outdoorsy type, Florida wildlife officials have a job for you.

But there’s a catch. Actually, several catches – all with very sharp teeth.

In the United States, the only place you’ll find an American crocodile in the wild is South Florida. It used to be an endangered species.

But not anymore.

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Finances
4:23 pm
Thu January 23, 2014

Miami Hispanics Not Saving Much For Retirement, Study Says

Wells Fargo Financial Health Survey in Miami Area
Wells Fargo

A recent survey by Prudential Financial advisors reveals the Hispanic American community places a priority on funding near-term goals, making it more difficult for Hispanics to prepare for retirement.

From Oct. 28 to Nov. 18 last year, the study polled 1,023 Americans who identify as "Hispanic." It covered several financial topics and what the driving force is behind making financial decisions in Hispanic American households.

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Transportation
6:21 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

Once Near Closure, Fortunes Of Old Seven-Mile Bridge Are Changing

Only 2.2 miles of the Old Seven-Mile Bridge remain open to foot traffic.
Credit Arianna Prothero/WLRN

The prospects for the Old Seven-Mile Bridge in the Middle Keys have turned 180 degrees in the past several weeks. The historic bridge and popular walking spot once in danger of being shut down is now close to receiving more than $77 million for repairs and 30 years' worth of upkeep.

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News
6:03 pm
Wed January 22, 2014

Beer Tastings At The Grocery Store? The Florida Senate Might Make It So

Half-gallon beer growlers are legal in 47 states. Florida isn't one of them. That could change during the legislative session that begins in March.
Credit stuartwainstock/flickr

How about getting a taste of beer as you fill your grocery cart? A bill moving through the Florida Senate would enable stores like Publix and Costco to offer their customers samples of beer.

Senator Nancy Detert, R-Venice, says it’s only fair.

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Links
8:14 am
Wed January 22, 2014

WLRN's Five Most Popular Stories Jan. 13 -17

Electronic cigarettes are available to minors in Florida.
Credit Chloe Herring / WLRN

In this week's top stories: We examine the popularity of electronic cigarettes, the woes of commuting on I-95, single-sex classrooms in the state and Haiti's new, young cardinal.

What's With All The Hype And Hope For Electronic Cigarettes?: Use of electronic cigarettes  is gaining popularity. Health officials and legislators are concerned the lack of information about and regulation of e-cigarettes will lead more individuals to consume them, especially minors.

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News
5:05 am
Wed January 22, 2014

Poll Findings: On Cuban-Americans And The Elusive 'American Dream'

Cuban immigrants are handed forms to fill out by an immigration and naturalization official in Miami on Dec. 3, 1984, so they can become permanent residents of the United States.
AP

Originally published on Wed January 22, 2014 9:11 am

Among Latinos, no group may have achieved the American dream as fully as Cuban-Americans.

Since arriving here, as a community, they've prospered. Surveys show they graduate from college at greater rates and have higher levels of homeownership than most other Latino groups.

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Culture
11:00 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Fort Lauderdale's Stonewall Museum Seeks Smithsonian Partnership

Credit Robotclaw666 / Flickr CC

Fort Lauderdale's Stonewall National Museum and Archives is seeking a partnership with the Smithsonian Institution in Washington D.C.

The Stonewall, the nation's largest collection of LGBT literature and periodicals, has applied for membership to the Smithsonian Affiliations program. The program would allow both museums to exchange artifacts among 183 affiliates across 43 states, Panama and Puerto Rico.

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LGBT Rights
1:12 pm
Tue January 21, 2014

Six Same-Sex Couples Sue For The Right To Marry In Florida

Credit Arianna Prothero / WLRN

Six couples from South Florida are legally challenging the state's ban on same-sex marriage.

Same-sex couples have never been allowed to marry in Florida. But six years ago a majority of voters chose to amend the state constitution to ban gay marriage.

Speaking at a press conference on Tuesday, attorney Shannon Minter argued minority rights should never be put up to a popular vote.

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Religion
5:58 pm
Mon January 20, 2014

More Mormons? Time For A Temple

The new temple is located at 3901 SW 154th Ave. in Davie next to I-75.
Credit Courtesy of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

The first Mormon temple in South Florida is scheduled to open this spring in Davie to serve the region’s growing Mormon population.

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints’ membership in South Florida has almost doubled in the last six years, to around 25,000, according to church officials.

All those Mormons have had to go to Orlando or farther to hold important religious ceremonies, like marriage, performed in a temple.

Tony Burns is a local church representative. He says the new temple’s architecture features South Florida’s natural environment.

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