Saturday, December 02, 2006


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Express Gay News

ACLU sues school over rejection of gay club
Court has ruled in favor of GSAs in other states, but not in Fla.

Nov. 24, 2006

After witnessing a gay male friend of hers get beat up on campus, YasminGonzalez, 17, decided to start a Gay-Straight Alliance at Okeechobee HighSchool in Central Florida.

She and other student organizers found a teacher to serve as faculty advisorfor the club and then sought the approval of the school's principal, ToniWiersma. But Wiersma balked at the idea, citing various reasons for notallowing the club, Gonzalez said.

"At first, she didn't give us a reason; she just brushed us off," Gonzalezsaid. "After they got the letter from the attorney, she said there were toomany clubs and she wouldn't allow it at the school. She said they were onlygoing to allow academic ones."


Commissioner Calls For Investigation Of Police
Police Fatally Shot Person For Fourth Time This Year

POSTED: 8:01 am EST November 30, 2006

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. -- A city official in Fort Lauderdale is calling foran independent investigation of police after officers fatally shot a personfor the fourth time this year.

City Commissioner Carlton Moore called the incidents "questionable" and saidthe most recent shooting has "the biggest question mark of all."

"We did not see, from the community's comments, no exchange of fire, that itonly came from our officers," Moore said.

At least one officer opened fire Tuesday on two men driving a stolen sportutility vehicle. The driver, 21-year-old Troy Eddines, was pronounced deadat the scene. The passenger, 21-year-old Travis Jackson, was wounded.


The Sun-Sentinel,0,1365133.story?coll=sfla-home-headlines

Broward school contracts threatening student expulsion under investigationLeaders say they didn't know of deals threatening expulsion based onperformance

By Jean-Paul Renaud
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

December 2, 2006

An investigation has been launched into how many public schools in BrowardCounty have made low-performing students and their parents sign contractsthat threaten to expel the children if they do not improve their grades andattendance.

District leaders say they were not aware of -- and never authorized -- suchcontracts.

"I understand that failure to comply with the above listed item willconstitute reason to withdraw me from [J.P. Taravella High] and I shouldexplore other educational avenues," one contract reads.


Article published Dec 2, 2006
Gov.-elect Crist loses first battle
Legislature won't fit Crist's bill in special session Jan. 16

By Jim Ash

Gov.-elect Charlie Crist hasn't even been sworn in and the scoreboardalready reads: Legislature 1, Crist 0.

Crist stuck out earlier this week when he tried to convince House and Senateleaders to put his ''anti-murder'' bill on the agenda of a Jan. 16 speciallegislative session called to deal with a property insurance crisis.

''If it's the governor's issue, it's certainly important, but we can onlyhandle one issue,'' said Senate Majority Leader Daniel Webster, R-WinterPark. ''There are so many divergent opinions on the insurance question, it'sgoing to be difficult just dealing with that.''


Appeals court won't rule on shackling juveniles
By Kathleen Chapman

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Appellate court judges said Friday they would not rule on whether childrenarrested as juveniles should be forced to wear shackles in the courtroom.

Travis Dunnington, who heads the juvenile division of the Palm Beach CountyPublic Defender's Office, filed motions on the issue this fall, asking PalmBeach County's four juvenile court judges to remove juvenile offenders'shackles and leg irons during court hearings.

Public defenders across the state have pushed the issue, pointing out thatadults accused of murder - and at least one alleged Al-Qaeda operative, JosePadilla - are allowed to appear in court without shackles.

Gov.-elect Charlie Crist told The Associated Press Friday that he feels itis wrong for teens to be shackled indiscriminately, regardless of offense.


Crist is light on details, but vows to focus on insurance
Published December 2, 2006

MIAMI - Gov.-elect Charlie Crist said he doesn't know all the specifics onhow to solve the state's homeowners insurance problem, but he expressedconfidence Friday that lawmakers will be productive in a special session toaddress the crisis.

"I campaigned all over the state, and the issue that I heard about most wasthe insurance issue - bar none," he said.

It was one of several subjects the state attorney general addressed duringan interview with the Associated Press.

Crist said insurance will be the top issue facing him after he becomesgovernor Jan. 2 and that he may have to back off his promise to sign noother bill before his proposed "antimurder act" because of the Jan. 16special session on insurance.


The Miami Herald

Posted on Wed, Nov. 29, 2006

Hastings won't chair House intelligence committee

By William E. Gibson
South Florida Sun-Sentinel

WASHINGTON - Still haunted by his impeachment as a federal judge 17 yearsago, Rep. Alcee Hastings was denied the chairmanship of the Houseintelligence committee on Tuesday, an influential role that would have madehim a chief guardian of the nation's secrets.

Clearly disappointed but unbowed, Hastings, D-Fla., pledged to enhance hisservice to South Florida and promote national security in other ways.

To critics, he said, "Sorry, haters, God is not finished with me yet."


Red flags raised on voting machines
Sarasota's ballot troubles coincide with a report critical of its system.
Alisa Ulferts and Wes Allison
Published December 2, 2006

This much state elections officials know: The 10 voting machines they usedin a mock Sarasota County election this week worked as they were supposed towork. Votes were cast, and the same number of votes were counted.

Here's what they still don't know: why there were 18,000 fewer votes castNov. 7 in a bitter congressional race than in the other races on the ballotthat day. The election re-enactment failed to produce the high percentage of"undervotes" that occurred in Sarasota County on Election Day.

And that lack of certainty fed calls on Friday for another overhaul of thenation's voting systems, even as a federal agency issued a draft reportcritical of electronic voting machines.

[ Send your comments about any of the articles in Ray's List Digest ]


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