Using ethics loophole, Sen. Lauren Book votes to give her nonprofit $1.5 million

By Francisco Alvarado
FloridaBulldog.org
Broward State Sen. Lauren Book voted “yes” last month to approve a state appropriations bill that included $1.5 million for Lauren’s Kids, the nonprofit she founded and leads as its $135,000-a-year chief executive officer.

FBI asks Miami judge to reconsider, keep secret ‘sensitive details’ about 9/11

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
The FBI is pushing back against a federal judge’s findings that certain classified details about the funding of the 9/11 attacks and the 19 al Qaeda suicide hijackers should be made public.

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Red light ticket? Enforcement depends on where you got it and how you try to resolve it

By Susannah Nesmith
FloridaBulldog.org
Miami-Dade Traffic Magistrate Christopher Benjamin played a series of dramatic videos of crashes caught on tape by red-light cameras. The people in the audience gasped each time someone t-boned a car, flipped over a railing, struck a motorcyclist or nearly plowed through a line of kids crossing the street. “Ladies and gentlemen, please rise,” Benjamin told the audience after playing the videos. And then he surprised everyone. “Be safe out there. Case dismissed. Thank you.”

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‘Invisible’ crime: Immigrant scams are big business in South Florida, but few crooks caught

By Joseph A. Mann Jr.
FloridaBulldog.org
Infamous as the setting for many cases of high-profile financial fraud and chicanery, South Florida is also home to a relatively unknown scam that targets the region’s large immigrant population, bilking many of them for thousands of dollars for “expert” immigration services that are never delivered, a Florida Bulldog investigation has found.

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Japan’s Teijin buys biggest asset in Scott’s blind trust; Governor pockets $200 million

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
Gov. Rick Scott appears to have pocketed $200 million in January when the biggest asset in his blind trust – Continental Structural Plastics – was sold to a subsidiary of the giant Japanese conglomerate Teijin Ltd.

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U.S. judge tosses lawsuit to block All Aboard Florida; Money for Phase 2 still in question

By Ann Henson Feltgen
FloridaBulldog.org
All Aboard Florida’s plan to operate regular passenger train service between Miami and Orlando survived a lawsuit filed by Indian River and Martin counties when a federal judge on May 10 dismissed the suit. But funding problems remain.

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Trial looms as judge denies FBI request to keep 9/11 records secret for privacy reasons

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
In a ruling that could lead to the release of significant new information about 9/11, including details about who funded the al Qaeda terrorist attacks, a Miami federal judge has rejected FBI assertions that many records should be kept secret due to privacy considerations.

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Hialeah’s mayor, a former crony, an off-the-books city gig and an ethics investigation

By Francisco Alvarado
FloridaBulldog.org
Being a political operative for Hialeah Mayor Carlos Hernandez comes with city perks.
Glenn Rice — a former city cop who worked on the mayor’s 2011 and 2013 campaigns — collected roughly $12,000 during a three-year period acting as an off-the-books employee monitoring the company Hialeah hired to collect trash from private homes, as well as investigating potential hires and vendors, a Miami-Dade ethics commission probe found.

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Gov. Scott doesn’t let politics get in way of investing in firm that believes in climate change

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
When Rick Scott ran for governor in 2010, he told a reporter he wasn’t convinced that global warming was real. In 2015, the Scott Administration was reported to have told state employees to lay off using “climate change” and “global warming” in official communications. Today, the governor’s office dodges questions about Scott’s position on the use of those terms.

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Mysterious Saudi businessman in 9/11 puzzle surfaces – online

By Dan Christensen
FloridaBulldog.org
A mysterious figure at the center of the puzzle about an apparent Sarasota-area support network for 9/11 hijackers is a rich Saudi Arabian businessman with ties to the kingdom’s ruling House of Saud and international and American political leaders.

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Bulldog Extra

By Christopher Jensen, FairWarning 

 

Three years ago, General Motors chief executive Mary Barra admitted that for years the automaker had concealed an ignition-switch defect, which has now been linked to at least 124 deaths. And she assured federal regulators that there would be a new pro-safety and pro-consumer attitude at the company.But federal safety regulators are now investigating whether GM has been adequately handling a recall of about 429,000 vehicles in the United States for the sudden failure of both low-beam headlights.

The investigation comes after 128 GM owners complained to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, according to a report posted on the agency’s website.
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