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Tobacco Settlement- Orlando Federal Court


There’s a war being waged in federal court in Orlando – one that you may have thought was over years ago, when a jury concluded for the public in 1998 that for decades cigarette manufacturers knew that their products were harmful and addictive and that they’d been hiding that information from the public.
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The Orlando Wetlands Park


When you flush your toilet or turn your tap, be sure to thank the Orlando Wetlands Park. The 1,650-acre property in Christmas in east Orange County used to be a cattle pasture. Then the city of Orlando purchased the land for $5.1 million in 1986 to help treat water on a larger scale in response to population increase and the Clean Water Act of 1972.
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Charlotte’s Web Medicinal Marijuana


While we all sit on our hands and wait to see if either the legislature or the general-election voting public in 2016 will actually legalize medicinal marijuana, the wayward weaving of the already approved Charlotte’s Web strain of cannabis – the legislature approved the low-THC for children in 2014 – continues to be a source of regulatory confusion. At issue, beyond the fact that only five nurseries will be allowed to cultivate and dispense the medicine in Florida, is the fact that the law doesn’t mitigate the differences between state and federal laws on illegal drugs. Last week, according to political website Saint Petersblog, Director of the Office of Compassionate Use Patricia Nelson negotiated for a mind-numbing 25 hours with …
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Impact By The Changes Made To The GED Test In 2014


To most people, the changes made to the GED test for 2014 probably don’t look like that big of a deal. The price to take the test, which gives people who dropped out of high school a chance at an equivalency diploma, went up from $70 to $128. Its content was changed to more closely reflect current Common Core high school teaching standards. And finally, the test can now only be taken on a computer.
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Ideas That Could Contribute to a Thriving Culture in Orlando


Earlier this month, we covered Mayor Buddy Dyer’s State of Downtown, at which he gave a big shout-out to Project DTO, the task force that polled Orlando residents about what they would like to see in a thriving downtown. Among the things Project DTO said people want is a celebration of the city’s history, more focus on outdoor activities and a “creator” culture.
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Image: hydraulic fracturing, energy.gov
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Could Florida Become the Next Frontier for Fracking?


Could Florida become the next frontier for fracking? Environmentalists, who are already concerned about the state’s fragile water supply, fear that it could, and this week they’re trying to get out ahead of the situation before the 2015 Legislative session begins in Tallahassee.
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From the Pages of Orlando Weekly

Orange County Voters Say Partisanship Is Not A Good Idea


A funny thing happened on the way to November. You might recall that Orange County voters were asked to register their feelings on making local elections partisan, thereby moving the elections of wonderful lovers of transparency like Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs to presidential years. More of a fair competition, you say? Voters said no! By about 55 percent, your friends and neighbors said that this wasn’t a good idea, because partisanship is awful.
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