Protect Florida’s water

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Orlando Sentinel – July 26, 2011

Last year’s hysterical reaction from opponents of tougher federal clean-water rules was, unfortunately, only the beginning.

Since the Associated Industries of Florida’s Barney Bishop hammered “radical left-wingers” for daring to impose new regulations that would strap businesses, we’ve seen a lawsuit from Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi and Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam. Read More

Florida Leaders Push for Regulation Reform During Trips to Washington

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Sunshine State News – June 22, 2011

Two Florida leaders in politics and business traveled to Washington, D.C., recently, with two very different experiences.

Gov. Rick Scott attended a bipartisan conference of governors and business leaders from around the country Monday, hosted by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Chamber Foundation. He touted his pro-business policies and an unemployment rate that has dropped 1.3 percent since he took office in January. Read More

Rail project on verge of being derailed?

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

CF News 13 – June 21, 2011

TALLAHASSEE — On the heels of killing high-speed rail, Gov. Scott is taking aim at another train: SunRail.

Scott has a big decision to make about SunRail and its ultimate effect on Polk County.

SunRail is a planned 61-mile commuter line between Daytona Beach and Orlando.

 Lawmakers have already committed to spending more than $400 million to buy the track from the railroad company CSX.

But, Scott has put the project on hold. Read More

White House’s Daley seeks balance in outreach meeting with manufacturers

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Washington Post – June 16, 2011

It was supposed to be the White House’s latest make-nice session with corporate America — a visit by Chief of Staff William M. Daley to a meeting with hundreds of manufacturing executives in town to press lawmakers for looser regulations.

But the outreach soon turned into a rare public dressing down of the president’s policies with his highest-ranking aide.

President Barack Obama is using his weekly media message to ask for patience while the economy recovers. He says the recession didn’t happen overnight and won’t end that way either. (June 11) Read More

Are the Dems About to Start a Rocky-style comeback in Florida?

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Tampa Bay Examiner – May 23, 2011

When the Tea Party movement took hold, their sweeping Rick Scott into power signaled the beginning of a GOP stranglehold over the Sunshine State. Florida’s Republican Party has now been celebrating victory after victory, but several issues, along with an arrogance-driven election loss, has exposed some cracks in what appeared to be a sound campaign foundation.

While Democrats are on the ropes in Tallahasee, they appear to be making some major headway on the local level. Tampa’s “nonpartisan” mayoral elections, saw Bob Buckhorn’s upset of Rose Ferlita in the race to run Florida’s third-largest city send some minor shockwaves around the state. Later, Jacksonville’s race saw GOP heavyweight Mike Hogan concede to the Clintonesque Alvin Brown in a race that appeared to be as a much a rebuke of Governor Rick Scott as it was a support of Democratic policies. Read More

Powerful interests checkmated Florida’s growth management agency

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

St. Petersburg Times – May 22, 2011

In its 35 years, the state Department of Community Affairs has irritated some of Florida’s most powerful people, including developers, lawyers, the Florida Chamber of Commerce, the Florida Farm Bureau and a coalition of the state’s biggest landowners.

Yet since its inception in 1986, state officials have mostly regarded the DCA as an essential safeguard against the runaway growth that damaged the state in the 1960s and ’70s — the traffic cop pulling over reckless drivers on the highway to Florida’s future.

Not anymore, though. Unless Gov. Rick Scott intervenes — which seems unlikely — the budget that the Legislature approved this month abolishes the DCA. Read More

Businesses Back Move To Weaken Florida Judges

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Lakeland Ledger – March 20, 2011

TALLAHASSEE | Florida courts are facing an unprecedented assault on their independence this year as state lawmakers are pushing more than a half-dozen measures that could weaken judicial power and could give the Legislature and governor more influence in selecting judges from the county courthouse to the Florida Supreme Court.

The changes also would make it easier for special-interest groups angered by any court decision to oust judges they don’t like.

House Speaker Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park — and powerful business groups — are driving the sweeping changes, which will likely find a receptive audience in the strongly conservative leaders running the Florida Legislature. Read More

Teacher Performance Pay Wins the Day

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Sunshine State News – March 17, 2011

The Legislature sent its first bill of the year to Gov. Rick Scott Wednesday, when the House joined the Senate in passing the hotly contested SB 736, a measure basing teacher pay on performance and assessments instead of seniority and tenure.

Flanked by legislative leaders at a press conference after the vote was taken, Scott praised the passage of the bill. “This will help attract and retain the best teachers,” said Scott, adding that it was part of his plan to increase jobs in the Sunshine State. Read More

Gov. Scott readies first trade mission

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

Miami Herald – March 16, 2011

Gov. Rick Scott will leave Thursday for his first foreign trade mission since being elected, a two-day trip to Panama.

A delegation of port officials, businessmen and Florida Chamber of Commerce representatives will head to Panama on Wednesday and Scott will join them a day later.

The trip is expected to cost about $27,000, Scott’s spokesman Brian Hughes said. Taxpayers will pay for about $5,000 while the remaining expenses will be covered by private donations to Enterprise Florida, the spokesman said. Read More

AIF’s Barney Bishop asks Mike Haridopolos to disregard fake Tea Party concerns re: Destination Resorts

November 8, 2011  |  No Comments  |  by Barney Bishop  |  News

St. Petersburg Times – March 15, 2011

Associated Industries of Florida today sent the below letter to Senate President Mike Haridopolos regarding Destination Resort Legislation.

An inaccurate letter sent to you by Everett Wilkinson falsely claiming to represent the interests of the “Tea Party” begs clarification and a response from those who support bringing world class Destination Resorts, tradeshows and conventions to the Sunshine State. Read More