Lawsuit: Broward Sheriff Scott Israel has tolerated and covered-up the illegal use of force

The late Steven Jerold Thompson, left, and suspended BSO Deputy Gerald Wengert

By Dan Christensen
The family of a 26-year-old black man shot and killed by a Broward Sheriff’s deputy has sued the deputy and Sheriff Scott Israel, alleging wrongful death, serious and repeated failures of police oversight, and cover-up.

Secret U.S. Marshals’ report ID’d security weaknesses at Broward courthouse before escape

Broward County Courthouse

By Dan Christensen
A confidential U.S. Marshals’ security assessment for the Broward County Courthouse exposed numerous weaknesses in the building’s security system four years before last week’s scandalous escape of a 21-year-old murder suspect.

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A psychiatric hospital for North Ridge site? Oakland Park commission set to decide


By Dan Christensen
UPDATE: FEB. 21 — With anxious residents watching at city hall and at home on computers and cable television, Oakland Park has put off for two weeks a decision on whether to approve a controversial psychiatric and drug rehabilitation hospital. The reason: Wednesday night’s hearing ran too late to finish the hearing.

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Judge: Deerfield Beach pump maker MWI doesn’t have to pay millions sought by U.S.

MWI Headquarters

By Dan Christensen
After a bitter, 16-year fight with the Justice Department, Deerfield Beach pump maker MWI scored a big victory last week with a federal judge’s ruling that the company isn’t liable for any damages for its violations of the False Claims Act.

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Payments to CEO raise new conflicts at top health quality group

Dr. Cristine Cassel, President and CEO of the National Quality Forum, speaking before the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, & Pensions. Dr. Cassel was paid hundreds of thousands of dollars in additional outside compensation after she was hired in December 2012. (

By Marshall Allen
The top executive at the country’s pre-eminent health care quality organization is being paid hundreds of thousands of dollars by two large medical companies that have a stake in the group’s work.

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Florida ethics bill: Lobbyists at independent taxing districts must register, disclose


By Dan Christensen
A government ethics bill introduced in the Florida Senate would for the first time require lobbyists before many large independent special districts to register and disclose their clients, areas of interest and general compensation.

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Ex-U.S. Rep. Deutsch stirs the pot in Hollywood; New school plans upset neighbors

Ex-Congressman Peter Deutsch

By William Gjebre
Five weeks after receiving approval for a middle-senior high school in Hollywood, Ben Gamla charter school officials are exploring “substantive” changes to the project, sparking renewed controversy.

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Broward commissioners tell Henry to come up with a plan for video-on-demand of meetings

The Broward County Commission. Lois Wexler is second from right. Chip LaMarca is at the far left.

By William Hladky
UPDATE: FEB. 5 – The Broward County Commission has directed the county administrator to prepare a cost analysis and implementation plan to create an on-line, video archive of commission meetings.

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As Broward commission races take shape, LaMarca, Keechl fear nasty re-run

Broward Commissioner Chip LaMarca, left, and challenger Ken Keechl

By Buddy Nevins
Broward County Commissioner Chip LaMarca and former Commissioner Ken Keechl approach their upcoming race for the commission like a child approaches the first day of school — with anxiety and trepidation.

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Post traumatic stress crisis ignored: Americans wounded in their own neighborhoods

A shooting victim is rushed to the hospital in Miami. Photo: CBS4

By Lois Beckett
Chicago’s Cook County Hospital has one of the busiest trauma centers in the nation, treating about 2,000 patients a year for gunshots, stabbings and other violent injuries. So when researchers started screening patients there for post-traumatic stress disorder in 2011, they assumed they would find cases. They just didn’t know how many.

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EPA abandons major radiation cleanup in Florida, despite cancer concerns


By Douglas P. Guarino
Center for Public Integrity
The Environmental Protection Agency is walking away after a decades-long battle with Florida politicians and industry officials over cleaning up phosphate-mining waste in an area that could expose more than 100,000 residents to cancer-causing radiation levels.

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