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The Florida Roundup
9:17 am
Fri November 8, 2013

What You Should Know About South Florida Elections This Week

Despite competitive mayoral races in Miami Beach and Homestead and some controversial ballot questions, voter turnout in Miami-Dade was about 11%.
Credit Dan Grech

Though voter turnout in this off-year election was low in Miami-Dade county, some changes will be tangible and immediate: like the property tax hike to pay for renovations of the Jackson hospital system. We review other local election results from this week.

While it’s not yet 2014, elections for next year are already gearing up. Charlie Crist declared his candidacy for a return to the governor’s seat. He’ll face off first against former state Senator Nan Rich.  We speak to both Democratic candidates.

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Elevation Zero
4:18 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Why Modern Human Beings Aren't Built To Grasp Climate Change

In 2007, artist Eve Mosher drew a chalk line at the 10-foot above sea level line around 70 miles of coastline in New York City.
Credit highwaterline.org

A decade ago, sea-level rise from climate change was a political argument with very little external reality in the minds of most people.

But University of Miami professor Kenny Broad might have said then what he says right now.

"This isn't some future generation problem," Broad said. "It’s in our lap right now and we don’t have a lot of time to make some clear decisions."

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Elevation Zero
4:18 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Will South Florida’s Real Estate Market Prices Plunge As The Seas Rise?

An aerial view of Ford Zachary Taylor Historic State Park and the Port of Key West.
Credit npr.org

Click the play button above to hear the radio version of this post by business reporter Karen Rundlet

Plenty of local realtors will describe South Florida’s housing market as recharged.  The latest reading from the popular Case-Shiller Index showed sales of single-family homes up 13.5 percent from a year ago in August.

There is continued demand for waterfront properties, fueled in large part by international cash buyers from countries like Canada and Brazil. In Miami-Dade County, for instance, the category of luxury properties selling at price points above $600,000 and below $1 million, saw growth in sales of almost 68 percent.

However, the question remains. If you add the threat of rising sea levels to the real estate investment equation in South Florida, are rooms with an ocean view actually a terrible place to put your money?

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Community Contributor
4:10 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

Dolphins Bullying: If You Celebrate Savagery, Civility Might Be Too Much To Ask

Incognito and Martin force us to focus on NFL behavior. When does locker-room behavior go too far?

There are two facts repeated in almost every telling of the story of bullying and harassment in  the Miami Dolphins' organization: Richie Incognito, named "the dirtiest player in the NFL," is no stranger to controversy, and Jonathan Martin is a Stanford graduate whose parents both graduated from Ivy League school, which would make him part of the elite in some circles.

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Arts Season
3:00 pm
Thu November 7, 2013

The Little Opera That Could: “Mourning Becomes Electra”

The Florida Grand Opera is only one of a handful of companies to perform "Mourning Becomes Electra."
Credit Justin Namon/Florida Grand Opera

    

Even if you’re an opera fanatic, there’s a fair chance you haven’t seen "Mourning Becomes Electra." The opera, written by Broward-based composer Martin David Levy, has only been performed by four companies since its debut in the late ‘60s and never before in the Southeastern U.S.

It’s even difficult to find music samples on YouTube.

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Music
11:14 am
Thu November 7, 2013

A Musical Bridge From Bachata To The Bronx

Bronx bachata artist Prince Royce speaks to a bicultural audience that flows between Latino traditions and American life.
Credit Carl Juste / Miami Herald

In many ways, Geoffrey Royce Rojas is like millions of other young Latino Americans. He was raised by Dominican parents who came to New York looking for the American dream and struggled to keep their four children out of trouble in a South Bronx neighborhood rife with gangs and drugs.
 

  Rojas, 24, grew up listening to techno and hip-hop, the Beatles and Jay-Z — and to the sweet, bouncy lilt of Dominican bachata at home and on summer visits to the Dominican Republic. He is matter-of-fact about balancing between two cultures.

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Americas
10:22 am
Thu November 7, 2013

A Soft — And Prosperous — Landing For Cubans Is In The U.S.'s Interest

A private Cuban shop vendor
Credit Brookings Institution

There are two basic realities about Cuba’s communist dictatorship that U.S. policy, and the anti-Castro hardliners that shape it, prefer to ignore. The first is that the Castro brothers will almost certainly die in power. The second is that market-oriented economic reforms, albeit tentative, are as much a part of Cuba’s landscape today as 1956 Chevrolets.

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Elevation Zero
6:00 am
Thu November 7, 2013

Meet The Miami Man Spearheading Climate-Change Research

The man and his maps. University of Miami professor Brian Soden studies the atmosphere and its affect on climate change.
Credit -Brian Soden

Growing up in landlocked Iowa may be precisely the reason that the lure of the ocean was so strong for Brian Soden.

It pulled him from the cornfields to the waters around the University of Miami with designs on perhaps being the next Jacques Cousteau.

Except for one pesky problem. He didn't care all that much for biology. No fish fetish here.

What did emerge was a curiosity about how the oceans got to be the way they are, how the atmosphere factors into that and how water vapor, clouds and rainfall play a role in the planetary picture.

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Politics
7:53 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Florida Dems Honor Senator And Former Civil-Rights Protester

Senator Arthenia Joyner was honored by the Florida Senate for her arrest during a civil rights protest 50 years ago.
Credit Courtesy

Arthenia Joyner is an African-American, Democratic state senator from Tampa, but 50 years ago she was a college student getting arrested for being a nonviolent protester just minutes from the state capitol in Tallahassee.

“Everything was segregated. You couldn’t go anywhere,” Joyner said. That’s why she was protesting outside Tallahassee's Florida Theater, the whites-only theater where she was arrested.

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News
5:34 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Florida House Dems Back Senate Tweaks of Stand Your Ground

The Stand Your Ground law is being revisited due to last year's death of Miami Gardens teen Trayvon Martin, shot by Sanford, Fla., George Zimmerman.

Florida House Democrats met with reporters Wednesday to say they don't want to turn Thursday’s Stand Your Ground hearing into a publicity stunt.

The House Criminal Justice Subcommittee will take up a bill by Democratic state Representative Alan Williams. The measure would repeal the 2005 Florida law that says people don't have to retreat in a situation where they fear for their lives.

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Politics
4:06 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Government Watchdog Finds $1 Billion In Savings For Florida Taxpayers

Florida Taxwatch has come up with suggested cost savings for the state for the last five years. Lawmakers and the governor have acted on $4.2 billion in recommended savings so far.
Credit Jordan Michael/WLRN

Florida TaxWatch, a nonprofit government watchdog group, is out with its annual list of ways the state can cut costs and be more efficient -- without cutting services.

The report, called Modern Management & Sensible Savings, found $1.2 billion that could potentially be returned to state coffers. Lawmakers could act on the recommendations when they convene for the annual legislative session next spring.

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Education
1:34 pm
Wed November 6, 2013

Broward County School Board Signs Agreement Aimed At Reducing On-Campus Arrests

The Broward County Public School Board aims to decrease the rate of arrests in public schools.
Credit Rachel Morello / WLRN

The Broward County School board teamed up with a group of community partners Tuesday to sign a collaborative agreement on school discipline. The agreement, first of its kind, establishes new guidelines for handling non-violent misdemeanor offenses on school campuses, outlining when law enforcement is necessary and when problems can be handled through school resources.

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Local Elections
10:36 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Miami-Dade County Election Highlights

Below, we've compiled a list of notable results in Tuesday's Miami-Dade County elections, including the chosen mayors for Homestead, Hialeah, Miami and Miami Beach.

RELATED: Do South Florida Mayors Do Anything?

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City Planning
8:56 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Fort Lauderdale Votes To Extend Sistrunk Boulevard Farther East

About $15 million of city, county and federal funds have been invested in a massive revitalization of the Sistrunk corridor.
Credit FortLauderdale.gov

In most big cities, altering a street sign is not much cause for fanfare.  But Fort Lauderdale’s decision to re-brand one particular street is being hailed by many in the city’s African-American community.

City commissioners decided Tuesday night that the name “Sistrunk Boulevard” will no longer stop near the railroad tracks, a segregation-era dividing line between the city’s black and white communities.  Sistrunk will now appear along with Northeast Sixth Street on signs running through Flagler Village, a section quickly gentrifying into a predominantly white neighborhood.

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StateImpact Florida
6:45 am
Wed November 6, 2013

Speakers Defend Jacksonville School Named For KKK’s First Grand Wizard

Nathan Bedford Forrest was the Confederate general who oversaw the Fort Pillow Massacre.
Credit New York Public Library

A petition to change the name of Jacksonville’s Nathan B. Forrest High School—whose namesake was the first Grand Wizard of the Ku Klux Klan—has reached more than 160,000 names.

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