The Florida Legislative Process 2021: Private and Public Schools

This is part of a series by the League of Women Voters of Citrus County (LWVCC) about Florida’s legislative process and issues.  The purpose is to increase citizen understanding and engagement. Since Florida’s 2021 Legislative session opened on March 2, bills are rapidly moving through both House and Senate.  This column addresses a bill to expand “School Choice.” SB 48, Educational Scholarships Program, proposes a massive expansion of  Florida’s private education options.  Florida already allows low-income parents to use publicly funded scholarship programs to place their children in private, mostly religious schools.  SB 48  has passed through committees and is nearing a vote on the Senate floor.   If passed, SB 48 will have a far-reaching impact on education in Florida.  SB 48 will: Merge Florida’s five current scholarship programs into two, one for students with disabilities and one for all others, making the system easier for parents to navigate.

Read more

Preventing Gun Deaths and Injuries

Preventing Gun Deaths and Injuries

 Preventing Gun Deaths and Injuries: Making Our Communities Safer for Everyone  March 24, 2021 at 1:00 PM  The Gun Safety Committees of the LWV of Palm Beach County and the LWV of Broward County are partnering on a Zoom presentation about what we can do to protect families and reduce gun violence in our communities. Topics to be discussed include Florida gun violence statistics, Florida Laws pertaining to gun ownership, risk protection orders, and the prevention of tragedies with safe gun storage. The presentation will include information from recent research conducted by the American Pediatric Association and Harvard University. We will look at the facts about suicide prevention, protecting children around guns, and reducing crime and domestic abuse through the safe storage of firearms. Register in advance for this meeting: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZcrcO-oqDMpGtIjgKTEm6KVCJOllbN_JJGT   After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.  Feel free to invite friends

Read more

Days of Action

Days of Action

The League of Women Voters (LWV) Invites Everyone to Participate in a National Day of Action for Fair Redistricting on April 29, 2021. The People Powered Fair Maps Day of Action will be held to shine a light on the redistricting process and demand fair maps. Official redistricting actions will occur quickly after the release of Census data in the Fall of 2021. In preparation for that, we must begin to engage the public for redistricting. The National LWV is organizing a Day of Action that integrates digital and in-person tactics for LWV affiliates, partner organizations, and all other stakeholders. Leagues all over the country will be hosting a variety of local, state, and national events to begin to build public awareness and engagement around the redistricting process. We want to ensure that the public has a say in how our maps are drawn. We want to remind State Capitol

Read more

Weekly MINI Crossword Puzzles

Weekly MINI Crossword Puzzles

Weekly Civics Education Crossword Puzzles are now available on our website!   Have fun, come play! Discover what you know about your government and notable American women. Play this Puzzle NOW! Each puzzle has only 8 questions and the puzzle will change every week, so you can keep on playing. Puzzles are from our LWVPBC Civics Education crossword puzzle booklets. U.S. Citizenship Test Palm Beach Country Government Florida Grade 7 Textbook Notable American Women

Read more

Fixing the Everglades

by Kathy Panko Environmental Issues Group – 02/15/2021 The Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP), approved by Congress in the year 2000, included 68 components to be completed in 20 to 30 years at a cost of $7.8 billion. The plan includes constructing reservoirs, removing levees, filling canals and building necessary structures. The aim was to restore something like the natural flow of water in what’s left of the Everglades while assuring water supply and flood protection for about a third of Floridians. Two decades later, the state and federal governments have spent $6.2 billion and completed just one project. Replumbing the Everglades is now expected to continue most of this century and cost more than $16 billion.  CERP is the largest environmental restoration project ever – covering an area the size of New Jersey.   Though named the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan, the project covered only part of the Everglades,

Read more

Sun shines on Palm Beach County with new solar co-op

By SCOTT LUXOR SUN SENTINEL CORRESPONDENT JAN 29, 2021 AT 12:21 PM Click HERE to go to the SunSentinel article. Palm Beach County is launching another solar co-op for 2021. The nonprofit’s goal, like those in Broward and Miami-Dade counties, is to bring homeowners together to find effective solar installers who will work with fair and transparent financing for their work. Solar United Neighbors, which created solar co-ops in Broward County and around the state, helps homeowners get in the act of searching for proper and ethical installer companies who will both follow through on the promises, as well as not overcharge for their services. Palm Beach County has had two such co-ops before. The first one was in 2017. The next one was in 2018. And now a third one planned to start in January. Diane Marks, who is chairwoman of the Solar Co-op Issue Group for the League of Women Voters of

Read more

What to Expect Under the Biden Administration

by Kathy Panko   What can we expect from President-elect Joe Biden as he puts climate change on center stage?  First of all, it is expected that Biden will re-enter the U.S. into the Paris (Climate) Agreement, the global pact established five years ago among 195 nations to avoid the worst impacts of climate change. Upon rejoining, the U.S. will likely be expected to provide a climate target (updated from the Obama administration) and a concrete plan to reduce domestic emissions from the power and energy sector. This move could bring the U.S. back into the accord as early as this month.    The U.S. is the world’s second-largest emitter of greenhouse gases, behind China, and is seen as key in the global effort to reduce the effects of climate change.  Of the 195 countries that signed the agreement, 189 countries officially adopted the accord, and no other country besides

Read more

Business Spotlight: Emergency Info Plan, LLC

Business Spotlight: Emergency Info Plan, LLC

By: Jalynsey Brown On Monday, 1/11/2021, I had the pleasure of speaking with League of Women Voters of Palm Beach County member, John Pastore. Pastore is the owner of Emergency Info Plan, LLC; an amazing tool that is helping users become prepared in the event of an emergency. Pastore explained how this business came about, after the sudden and unexpected passing of his wife in 2017. Pastore mentions how he and his wife were in different states at the time of her medical emergency and how he was not made aware of what had happened, how to reach her, which hospital she was being transported to, and so on. He also mentions how his wife was also unable to tell first responders’ pertinent medical information about herself, which may have saved her life. Pastore wants to ensure that others are educated and prepared to avoid this from happening to them,

Read more