Ron DeSantis wants to pull some bullshit before restoring rights to Florida felons: Despite nearly 65 percent of Floridians voting for Amendment 4 in November, Republican Gov.-elect Ron DeSantis now says he's opposed to immediately restoring the right to vote to the 1.5 million former felons who've served their time. In an interview with the Palm Beach Post, DeSantis called for a bill with "implementing language" to be sent to him for his signature, effectively delaying rights restoration for months. That's right – the same elected officials who couldn't be bothered to fix the issue for years now want a say in the process. Advocates for Amendment 4, though, argue the ballot language was clear and self-executing, and does not require state lawmakers to pass implementing language in order for it to go into effect Jan. 8, 2019.
The future of Orlando's Artegon Marketplace starts to take shape: Despite ongoing problems with the city over building permits, Miami developer Michael Dezer's plans to reopen the former Artegon Marketplace include an auto museum and a Brazilian steakhouse. People will be able to buy any of the 1,500 collectible cars at the location, including the hearse from the original Ghostbusters movie, various James Bond vehicles or a Trump-branded black limo, which was reportedly Trump's personal vehicle at one time. Dezer Development has been behind quite a few major projects like the Porsche Design Tower, Residences by Armani/Casa and six Trump-branded towers.
Stephanie Murphy slams Trump's attempt to deport Vietnamese war refugees: U.S. Rep. Stephanie Murphy slammed the Trump administration's reported plan to deport Vietnamese immigrants who arrived in the U.S. before 1995, including Vietnam War refugees. The Atlantic reports the Trump administration is reinterpreting a 2008 agreement between the U.S. and Vietnam that Vietnamese immigrants who arrived before the two formerly warring countries established diplomatic relations on July 12, 1995, would not be subject to deportation. Murphy, the first Vietnamese-American woman to be elected to Congress, is herself a Vietnamese refugee and part of the Vietnamese diaspora that calls Orange County home. "My family fled Communist Vietnam when I was a baby because they would have rather died in search of light than to have lived in darkness," the Winter Park Democrat said in a statement on Twitter. "I urge [Trump] to be mindful of this proposed policy's impacts on thousands of families."
Orange County leads Florida in decline of juvenile arrests: A new report shows Orange County had Florida's largest drop in juvenile arrests as the state hit a 43-year low. Juvenile arrests in Orange County decreased by 19 percent in the last year, and more than 30 percent over the past two years. Statewide, juvenile arrests dropped by 8 percent. Local law enforcement officials have taken steps in the past three years to knock Orange County down from its former spot leading the state in the number of juveniles charged with a crime. Leaders have pushed for the use of civil citations and diversion programs instead of arrests, as well as Project No/No, an initiative that gives juvenile offenders who haven't been arrested a second chance with a clean record.
City of Orlando wants to raise parking fines by $5: The Orlando City Council approved on first reading a measure to raise certain parking violations by $5. If adopted, the ordinance would increase fines for five violations starting May 1, 2019, including parking over time in limited authorized zones, meter violation, failure or refusal to pay a parking fee, parking over line, and parking a vehicle without a current license plate or validation sticker. City officials estimate the proposal will bring in about $300,000 in extra revenue and provide more funds for public transportation and other mobility options in downtown.
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