Capitol preview: What to expect this week in Florida politics

By on July 16, 2012

It’s campaign time. The week starts with the Democrats’ big annual dinner in Hollywood, and there’s a critical elections milestone early in the week as pre-primary books close for voter registration on Monday.

Candidates will be busy heading into the final month before the primary, and at least one presidential candidate, President Obama, is coming to the state this week.

But otherwise it’s the slow time of the year. The Supreme Court and Cabinet join legislators on summer break this week, though Gov. Rick Scott is back from a weeklong trade trip to the UK, and starting his week on Fox News.

MONDAY

VOTER REGISTRATION CLOSES FOR PRIMARY: Monday is the last day voters can register to vote and be able to vote in the Aug. 14 primary.

CITIZENS RATE WORKSHOP: The Citizens Property Insurance Corp. Board of Governors meets to discuss rate changes for the upcoming year. The workshop will be the first detailed look at potential rates since newly appointed CEO Barry Gilway started his job.  Board members are looking at options to make Citizens’ rates more actuarially sound and reduce the number of policies in the state-backed  program.  The board workshop follows a meeting of Citizens actuarial subcommittee, which is reviewing a list of new products for the upcoming year including policies with higher deductibles, stricter limits and other changes. (Monday 8 a.m., W Marriott, 1109 Brickell Ave., Miami. Audit Committee meeting teleconference number is 866-361-7525; Participant Code: 8632017402#; Governing Board workshop teleconference follows at 9 a.m., Teleconference number is 888-942-8686 Participation Code: 5743735657#)

FAMU BOT: The Board of Trustees at Florida A&M University meets by phone Monday to discuss the recent decision by President James Ammons to resign. The board will discuss a transition plan for when Ammons leaves in October. Ammons stepped down in the midst of a series of problems that have come to light at the school, and in the wake of the death of a student in what was said to be a band hazing event. (Monday, 9 a.m., Call-in: 1-800-309-9169; Conference ID number: 10542700.)

BOARD OF ED DIGS INTO BUDGET: The Florida Board of Education will hold a workshop that will include presentations about state finances and major cost drivers for the 2013-14 education budget. (Monday, 2:30 p.m., Broward College Downtown Campus board room, 111 East Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale.)

CAMPAIGNS

JEB BUSH TO HEADLINE FUNDRAISER FOR SON’S MAVERICK PAC: Former Gov. Jeb Bush will headline a fundraiser for Maverick PAC, the group founded by George P. Bush, the former governor’s son. The organization supports young Republican candidates. (Monday, 12:30 p.m., Ariel’s, Disney Yacht Club Resort, 1700 Epcot Resorts Blvd., Lake Buena Vista.)

TUESDAY

BOARD OF ED CONSIDERS BUDGET, BACCALAUREATES, CHARTERS: The Florida Board of Education will hold its regular meeting and consider a series of issues, including budget guidelines for the 2013-14 year, baccalaureate-program proposals at Polk State College and Florida State College at Jacksonville and several charter-school appeals. The board also gets an update on school nutrition programs from Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. (Tuesday, 8 a.m., Broward College Downtown Campus board room, 111 East Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale.)

GULF NUKE SITE AGAIN DISCUSSED: The Florida Public Service Commission will consider a proposal by Gulf Power Co. to tap customers for costs related to a potential nuclear-power plant site in Escambia County. The PSC earlier this year rejected including the costs in base electric rates, but Gulf has asked regulators to reconsider that decision. (Tuesday, 9:30 a.m., Betty Easley Conference Center, 4075 Esplanade Way, Tallahassee.)

REVENUE ESTIMATORS LOOK AT MEDICARE: Spending on the federal Medicare program is the subject of a revenue estimating conference. (Tuesday, 9:30 a.m., 117 Knott Building, The Capitol.)

ROBINSON HEARS FROM PARENTS, TEACHERS: Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson hosts a regular community forum to talk to parents, teachers and the public about education. At Tuesday’s meeting, he’ll be joined by state Board of Education member Barbara Feingold. (Tuesday, 6:30 p.m., Broward College, 111 E. Las Olas Blvd., Fort Lauderdale.)

WEDNESDAY

HEALTH CHOICES TALKS ABOUT INSURANCE MARKETPLACE: The Florida Health Choices Board of Directors will meet to discuss the continued development of an online insurance marketplace aimed at small businesses and individuals. (Wednesday, 11 a.m., Hyatt Regency Grand Cypress, One Grand Cypress Blvd., Orlando.)

MEDICAID MENTAL HEALTH DISCUSSED: The Agency for Health Care Administration will hold a meeting for Medicaid managed-care plans and behavioral-health providers to discuss services for Medicaid beneficiaries. (Wednesday, 1 p.m., Children’s Services Council of Broward County, 6600 West Commercial Blvd., Lauderhill.)

NORTHEAST WATER STANDARD AIRED: The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a workshop about a draft “total maximum daily load,” a type of water standard, for the Upper East Coast Basin. (Wednesday, 1 p.m., DEP Northeast District, 7825 Baymeadows Way, Suite B200, Jacksonville.)

ROBINSON HEARS FROM SW FLA PARENTS, TEACHERS: Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson takes his community talking tour to southwest Florida on Wednesday. (Wednesday, 6:30 p.m., Edison State College, Building U, Room 102, 8099 College Parkway., Fort Myers.)

THURSDAY

CYBER BULLYING AND GANGS: The Florida Association of School Administrators and the Florida Association of School Resource Officers are hosting a one-day seminar for district and school personnel on cybersafety and bullying, emergency management planning and “Gangs, 101.” (Thursday, 9 a.m., Hyatt Regency Coconut Resort and Spa, 5001 Coconut Rd., Bonita Springs.)

BOARD TALKS ABOUT INSURANCE MARKET: The Florida Health Insurance Advisory Board, which includes representatives of insurers, businesses and policyholders, will discuss insurance issues. (Thursday, 1 p.m., 401 Senate Office Building, the Capitol.)

TALK TO THE COMMISH: Florida Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson host the next in a series of community forums to meet with parents, teachers and other community members interested in education issues in the state. Robinson will be joined at the Thursday meeting in St. Petersburg by Board of Education member Akshay Desai. (Thursday, 6:30 p.m., Universal Health Care, 100 Central Ave., Suite 200, St. Petersburg.)

FRIDAY

SCHOOL ENROLLMENT DISCUSSED: State revenue estimators will evaluate PreK-12 school enrollment for purposes of figuring per pupil spending. (Friday, 9 a.m., 117 Knott Building, The Capitol.)

JUNE UNEMPLOYMENT FIGURES: State employment officials on Friday release unemployment figures for June. The jobless rate in the state fell in May to 8.6 percent, continuing a year and a half downward trend that Floridians are doubtless hoping continues. (Friday, 10 a.m.)

FLORIDA HOUSING FINANCE CORP.MEETS:   The governing board of the Florida Housing Finance Corp will meet to approve contracts, underwriting requirements and a series of potential contracts with investment advisors, financial advisors and bond counsel. (Friday, 11 a.m., Hyatt Regency Coral Gables,  50 Alhambra Plaza, Coral Gables.)

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