Capitol Report2021-02-17T02:06:29-05:00

Capitol Report: Special Session on Budget Likely due to COVID-19

At the close of legislative session for those who work, volunteer or apprentice at The Children’s Campaign, there’s a sense of relief. We are fatigued from the endless hours of reading (and re-reading) long bills and last minute filed amendments, which pop onto our screens at crazy hours of the day and night; from working across complex siloes of children’s services to support good policy and reform;  and from digging for verifiable facts to push back against bad legislation rooted in ideology or misinformation rather than quality research or best practice. It is said for every single line of bad policy it takes 3-5 lines to debunk and dispel. It’s a communications ...Read More

By |March 24, 2020|Breaking News, Capitol Report|

3 Weeks To Go: Some Children’s Bills Moving, Most Are Not

While many posts on digital platforms made fun of the month of January for seemingly lasting thousands of days, February is certainly flying by - with the end of Session drawing rapidly closer. Bills that are moving still have a chance to make it to the finish line, but the window of opportunity is closing. Bills that don’t have a companion in the opposite chamber rarely are passed; those that haven’t made it through at least two of their committees of reference and any that have hit a roadblock, such as a committee chair refusing to agenda the issue, have exceedingly tall hurdles to overcome. Discussions in Tallahassee are switching to appropriations. ...Read More

By |February 24, 2020|Breaking News, Capitol Report|

January 27th Capitol Report – Deserving Attention

Children’s Week, starting today, also kicks off the third week of legislative session. Actually, Children’s Week began yesterday with the Hanging of The Hands in the state capitol rotunda. The brightness of the colors from thousands of hands streaming down multiple stories evoke feelings of hope and joy. Outside, in the capitol courtyard, hundreds of small children run and play amid the booths erected and staffed by provider organizations and coalitions creating a fair-like atmosphere. Cameras inside a media truck parked to the side record interviews with legislators and others about children being the future.  All of it is designed to tug at the heart to drum beat a message about the ...Read More

By |January 26, 2020|Breaking News, Capitol Report|

Midpoint Report on Committee Weeks: Promises and Proposals Abound

With half of the committee weeks already completed, the January 14th start date for Florida’s 2020 Legislative Session is approaching nearly as fast as holiday decorations are popping up in stores.  Proponents for increased budgetary attention on children’s services gaps range from prenatal care to child welfare and juvenile justice will again struggle for attention within appropriations (always a focus, especially in election years), divisive core issues, continuing proposals related to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School tragedy, teacher salaries, the environment and more. But there is a bright light for Florida’s children on the horizon. Upcoming Senate President Names Children’s Issues as Top Priority Senator Wilton Simpson (R-Trilby), elected by his ...Read More

By |November 1, 2019|Breaking News, Capitol Report|

Florida’s “New” Budget – How Families with Children Fared

Throughout the Florida capitol during session, it was whispered that it would be a “tough” budget year. The implication was this is rather abnormal. Better years were ahead. Better put a pin in that. This could be THE NEW NORMAL. Tax giveaways piled on top of each other – even small ones multiplied many times over – add up to real money. Other revenue restricting measures have tied the hands of local and state policymakers. Florida as a whole is increasingly finding it nearly impossible to meet the needs of its booming population, especially vulnerable children. With every tax break, however well intended, someone in authority should question: is that one more adverse ...Read More

By |May 29, 2019|Breaking News, Capitol Report|

Legislative Session Wrap Up – What Happened with Kids?

Pre-session writings on the wall turned out to be prophetic. As we reported and predicted in January, the lack of specific mention of children’s issues by leadership during the post-election transition, the rush of bill filing for a large freshman class and ideological issues – several of which emanated in tweets from the nation’s capital – foretold a weak legislative session for children. Overall, as media has reported, this session was not inclined to pass a lot of new policy. At last count, the fewest number of bills in 10 years made it through the first chamber (293) and second lowest number made it through both chambers (174) and journeyed their way ...Read More

By |May 15, 2019|Breaking News, Capitol Report|