1. A St. Petersburg Times editorial argues that sentencing reform — not privatization — is a more effective way to cut prison costs.
  2. Should coastal communities be treated as “communities of interest” in the redistricting process? Some South Floridians think so, and some of their arguments recall a debate that emerged in the Panhandle.
  3. Changes are likely coming to laws governing personal injury protection insurance, aka PIP, as criticism of Florida’s no-fault auto insurance system mounts.
  4. How will the laws changed last legislative session by Senate bill 736 affect specialty teachers?
  5. With school districts looking for savings, some are increasing the number of virtual classrooms.
  6. Numbers of the day:
    28,100 — Number of jobs Florida added over the past year, from July 2010 to July 2011, according to the state’s latest employment report, which was released Friday.41,800 — Number of jobs added during the same period in the “leisure and hospitality” sector, which is benefitting from a tourism recovery.
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Schale: Florida will be close in the 2012 presidential election: News. Politics. Media

Last November Republicans in Florida won a supermajority in the state legislature, swept the state cabinet and held onto the governorship and a U.S. Senate seat. However, the state will absolutely be a toss-up in the 2012 presidential election, says Democratic strategist and Obama's 2008 Florida campaign manager Steve Schale. He crunches the numbers and finds that only Colorado has been a closer swing state in recent years.