Pipeline foes ask DEP to deny key permit; Cite ‘conflict of interest’ by Gov. Scott

Gov. Rick Scott

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Opponents of a proposed natural gas pipeline in North Florida are asking Florida regulators to reject the project, citing both dangers to the environment and a “conflict of interest” by the regulators’ boss, Gov. Rick Scott.

Convicted thief sets up South Florida super PAC with Federal Election Commission’s OK

unum

By Francisco Alvarado
FloridaBulldog.org
Four years after being convicted of stealing $35,000 worth of textbooks from Ohio State University’s law school library, Christopher Brian Valdes set up a super PAC this month in South Florida with the blessing of the Federal Election Commission.

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Bury excess plutonium, don’t turn it into fuel, study says

The multi-billion dollar MOX plant under construction near Aiken, South Carolina in 2013

By Patrick Malone and Douglas Birch
Center for Public Integrity
A team of experts has confirmed what the Energy Department has been saying for two years — that burying 34 tons of weapons-grade plutonium would be far cheaper and more practical than completing a multibillion-dollar plant that would turn the radioactive material into commercial reactor fuel.

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Powerful medicine: Broward Health offers nearly $70 million to settle federal fraud probe

bhpowerful

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Taxpayer-supported Broward Health offered Thursday to pay nearly $70 million to settle a four-year-old federal investigation into allegations of massive Medicare and Medicaid fraud.

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You don’t need X-ray vision to see through Gov. Rick Scott’s blind trust

Gov. Rick Scott, right, and blind trust executive Alan Bazaar

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Gov. Rick Scott keeps his $127.8 million stock portfolio in a blind trust, but the trust isn’t doing its job of preventing him from having knowledge or control of his investments. The blind trust keeps the governor’s assets out of sight of the public, but fails to blind him to his investments.

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Pipeline company with tie to Gov. Scott, and state backing, has history of accidents

With the Clinton Presidential Center in the foreground, this photo shows a Spectra Energy pipeline blowout beneath the Arkansas River in Little Rock on May 31. Photo Courtesy: Tony Cassady

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Spectra Energy, the company that state environmental regulators say should be allowed to construct a 267-mile-long natural gas pipeline in North Florida, has a checkered history of accidents and violations of federal safety rules in the U.S. and Canada dating back decades.

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Trump, Gimenez let off easy after breaking lobbying laws, critics say

Donald Trump, right, and Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez

By Francisco Alvarado
FloridaBulldog.org
Donald Trump’s efforts to take over management of a public golf course is at the center of a recently concluded Miami-Dade ethics commission probe that has come under fire for not admonishing the billionaire developer and county Mayor Carlos Gimenez for breaking local lobbying laws.

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Gov. Scott’s pipeline investment gets a boost from Florida environmental regulators

Gov. Rick Scott

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
State regulators are quietly backing the award of a crucial environmental permit to a company that wants to build a controversial $3-billion natural gas pipeline in North Florida. The company’s investors include Gov. Rick Scott.

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Billionaire car dealer Braman also gives big to Lopez-Cantera’s Senate run

Norman Braman, left and Carlos Lopez-Cantera

By Francisco Alvarado
FloridaBulldog.org
Having raised $5 million for Marco Rubio’s presidential aspirations, billionaire automobile dealer Norman Braman is also betting big money on another Miami Republican who is seeking to succeed Rubio in the U.S. Senate in 2016, Lt. Governor Carlos Lopez-Cantera.

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Bulldog Extra

By Nicholas Kusnetz, Center for Public Integrity voting

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The offices in a former Kohl’s department store here look inconsequential enough — linoleum floors, fluorescent lights and cookie-cutter furniture. But what happens in this strip mall, and other equally nondescript settings nationwide, could in fact be crucial to the struggle over America’s voting laws and apparatus — a struggle that may go a long way toward determining the outcome of next November’s presidential election.

The Franklin County Board of Elections moved to the north side of this capital city last year after using the site in 2012 to accommodate the rush of people who cast their ballots during Ohio’s early voting period. But that early voting policy is still not set in stone — its duration and details have been stretched and squeezed repeatedly over the past few years by both state law and court order, part of a bitter clash between Democrats and Republicans over access to the ballot, electoral integrity and resources. Full Story »

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