Capitol Buzz: Five things to watch today in Tallahassee
Budget negotiations will likely continue to dominate much of the attention in Tallahassee today, but big policy issues are working their way through the House and Senate as well.
* The Senate Appropriations Committee could take back up a bill (SB 318) regulating the controversial "fracking" process of oil drilling, which supporters say allows for further study and opponents say legalizes the procedure. The legislation was voted down last week but could be reconsidered if a compromise is struck. (10 a.m., 412 Knott)
* Surgeon General Dr. John Armstrong is scheduled for another confirmation hearing after his last one was postponed when it was clear he did not have the votes on the Senate Ethics and Elections Committee to pass. His hearing is scheduled for 8:30 a.m., and it could be the final chance for the Ocala doctor running Gov. Rick Scott's health department to keep his job. (412 Knott)
* The House will consider amendments to several of its health care reforms, including direct primary care, the creation of recovery care centers, telemedicine and hospital transparency. The chamber will also take up a needle exchange pilot program in Miami-Dade County. (10:30 a.m., House floor)
* A rewrite of the state's alimony laws, which has sparked controversy for several years, is up in the Senate Appropriations Committee. Some worry their alimony payments could be cut off sooner if the bill passes. (10 a.m., 412 Knott)
* Time's ticking if lawmakers are going to pass the governor's gaming compact with the Seminole Tribe. The Senate Appropriations Committee is scheduled to consider it, although many lawmakers have expressed serious concerns about the deal. (10 a.m., 412 Knott)