Last Call for 9.2.20 — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics

A digest of the day's politics and policy while the bartender refreshes your drink.

Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.

First Shot

More police in Florida schools has led to more arrests, according to a new study led by the ACLU of Florida.

ACLU of Florida analyzed state data and found that the number of school arrests shot up 8% in the 2018-19 school year, the most recent year data is available and the first school year following after the Legislature mandated that all schools have an officer on campus.

There are now more than 3,600 police officers working in Florida schools, far and away more than the number of nurses, social workers and psychologists.

“Florida is failing to meet the needs of its students,” said Michelle Morton, research coordinator and policy counsel at ACLU of Florida.

“The security measures implemented by our state due to the fear of mass shootings have created school environments that are not conducive to learning. School has become a primary source of stress for many students. The percentage of youth arrests happening at school hit a five-year high of 20%. We need to invest in better solutions.”

Joining ACLU’s call are the Florida Social Justice in Schools Project, Southern Poverty Law Center, the League of Women Voters of Florida and Equality Florida.

“Lawmakers and the MSD High School Public Safety Commission need to rethink these policies. They have had the unintended consequences of making schools less safe, more hostile and harmful for too many of Florida’s students,” said Bacardi Jackson, managing attorney at SPLC Action Fund.

“From pushes for the proliferation of guns in the hands of inadequately trained civilians on school campuses to Florida’s excessive and unprecedented use of the Baker Act on over 35,000 children a year, our lawmakers have erected far too many barriers to creating safe and effective learning environments in which all children can thrive.”

In addition to recommending the state repeal the mandate, the coalition is calling for policies such as a minimum age for arrest and limitations on the use of force against children.

Coronavirus Numbers

Positive cases

— 626,426 FL residents (+2,310 since Monday)

— 7,016 Non-FL residents (+92 since Monday)


— 4,830 Travel related

— 209,295 Contact with a confirmed case

— 5,117 Both

— 407,184 Under investigation


— 39,158 in FL


— 11,651 in FL

Evening Reads

‘Urgent’ request sent to states in push for coronavirus vaccine delivery by Nov. 1” via Michael Wilner of McClatchy DC

Joe Biden campaign says it raised record-breaking $364.5 million in August” via Jacob Knutson of Axios

Biden had better convention speech and a winning message, Florida insiders say.” via Steve Contorno of the Tampa Bay Times

U.S. debt is set to exceed size of the economy next year, a first since World War II” via Kate Davidson of The Wall Street Journal

Jill Biden slams Donald Trump’s ‘chaos’ in virtual stop at Pasco-Hernandez State College” via A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics

The battle for Florida’s Latino voters could decide the entire presidential election” via Travis Waldron of HuffPost

Biden campaign launches Florida-only TV commercial on COVID-19” via Scott Powers of Florida Politics

Florida reports 2,402 new coronavirus cases, 127 more resident deaths” via Tiffini Thiesen of the Orlando Sentinel

Sarasota County schools opening COVID-19 test centers” via Ryan McKinnon of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune

Will millions in Priscilla Chan, Mark Zuckerberg money ensure security, confidence in Florida’s election results?” via Jacob Ogles of Florida Politics

TaxWatch blasts procurement system, citing Deloitte deal” via Matt Dixon of POLITICO Florida

Florida lawmakers get their economic report cards, with some surprising results” via The Capitolist

Dane Eagle selected next DEO executive director” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics

One of the hardest jobs in government — even one misstep can be costly to the Governor” via Michael Moline of The Florida Phoenix

More women than ever are running for office. But are they winning their primaries?” via Meredith Conroy and Nathaniel Rakich of FiveThirtyEight

How Black Mayors in the South are leveraging both the power of office and the power of the street to achieve overdue changes” via Adam Harris of The Atlantic

The push for a $15 minimum wage in Florida is on and these groups are leading the fight” via Steve Contorno of the Tampa Bay Times

As cases of rare COVID-19 complication rise in Florida kids, trends emerge” via Naseem S. Miller of the Orlando Sentinel

The flagrant hypocrisy of bungled college reopenings” via C. Brandon Ogbunu of WIRED

Quest data dump raises new concerns about whether COVID data is under-reported” via Mary Ellen Klas of the Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Dept. of Health stays silent about school-related COVID-19 cases” via Emily Bloch of The Florida Times-Union

Critics want powerful police unions reined in. Miami history shows it won’t be easy” via Charles Rabin of the Miami Herald

COVID-19 is spurring the digitisation of government” via The Economist

Florida bars cook up ways to reopen” via Dara Kam of News Service of Florida

Cyberattacks on Miami-Dade Schools continue for third day” via The Associated Press

COVID-19 chronicles: Meet 11 Tallahassee community members who fought the virus and won” via Alicia Devine of the Tallahassee Democrat

Disney grapples with how to proceed on ‘Black Panther’ without Chadwick Boseman

Joel Greenberg settled discrimination lawsuit before resigning as Seminole County Tax Collector” via Mike Synan of Florida Daily

Quote of the Day

“We enter in precarious times, and I look forward to working with my former colleagues to effectuate change and lead DEO into a bright future.” — Rep. Dane Eagle, following his appointment to run the Department of Economic Opportunity.

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