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Kathleen McGrory, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Kathleen McGrory

Kathleen McGrory is a state government reporter in the Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald Tallahassee Bureau. She has been with the Miami Herald since 2006. Her previous beats include breaking news, the Miami-Dade school district and Miami City Hall. She holds degrees from Hamilton College in Clinton, N.Y., and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism.

Phone: (850) 222-3095

Email: kmcgrory@miamiherald.com

Twitter: @kmcgrory

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  1. Ethics commission recommends fines for Rivera

    Blog

    Without any debate, members of the state ethics commission on Friday agreed that former U.S. Rep. David Rivera should pay $57,821.96 for improperly accepting state money for travel when he served as a state representative.

    It will now be up to the Florida House to decide whether to penalize its former member.

    Rivera, who was in Tallahassee Friday but did not attend the ethics hearing, declined to comment on the final order from the ethics commission. But his attorney Leonard Collins called it "expected," and said he planned to appeal to the First District Court of Appeal....

  2. Florida ethics panel rules former Rep. David Rivera deserves fine, reprimand

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Without any debate, members of the state ethics commission on Friday agreed that former U.S. Rep. David Rivera should pay $57,821.96 for improperly accepting state money for travel when he served as a state representative.

    It will now be up to the Florida House to decide whether to penalize its former member.

    Rivera, who was in Tallahassee Friday but did not attend the ethics hearing, declined to comment on the final order from the ethics commission....

    FILE- In this Nov. 2, 2010, file photo, Republican David Rivera speaks to supporters in Coral Gables, Fla. State prosecutors say they won't charge Rivera with a crime but the 16-page memo they issued Wednesday, April 18, 2012, outlines allegations of questionable financial practices which may make his re-election bid more difficult. (AP Photo/Alan Diaz, File) MH101
  3. House won't backfill hospital funding program with state dollars

    Blog

    The Florida House will not backfill the $2.2 billion Low Income Pool program with state dollars if the federal government fails to renew funding, House Speaker Steve Crisafulli said Thursday.

    "Florida is not in a position financially to backfill a program that was created out of Washington," Criasfulli said. 

    Using the reserves to fill the gap, he added, would be "irresponsible."...

  4. Scott to sue feds over hospital funding

    Blog

    Republican Gov. Rick Scott announced Thursday he will sue the federal government for allegedly coercing Florida to expand Medicaid.

    “It is appalling that President Obama would cut off federal healthcare dollars to Florida in an effort to force our state further into Obamacare,” Scott said in a statement.

    The announcement is but the latest round in an ongoing spat between Scott and the feds....

  5. Gov. Rick Scott sues feds over health care money, Medicaid expansion

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Republican Gov. Rick Scott announced Thursday he will sue the federal government for allegedly coercing Florida to expand Medicaid.

    "It is appalling that President (Barack) Obama would cut off federal health care dollars to Florida in an effort to force our state further into Obamacare," Scott said in a statement.

    The legal maneuver, which comes amid a tense standoff between the House and Senate over Medicaid expansion, was simultaneously lauded and lambasted. It also complicates negotiations over this year's budget....

    “We will fight to protect the health care of Floridians, and their right to be free from federal overreach.”
Gov. Scott
  6. Florida Senate stalls school guns bills

    Blog

    A proposal that would allow certain teachers to pack heat in public schools is on life support after the Senate Education Committee declined to vote on it for the second meeting in a row.

    The measure (SB 180) could still come up as an amendment to a related bill.

    But Senate Education Committee Chairman John Legg, R-Trinity, has been adamantly against it, and he said he was hopeful that the full Senate would side with him if the measure found its way to the floor....

  7. Florida Legislature heads toward special session because of Medicaid impasse

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Republican leaders said Wednesday that they won't approve a budget by the scheduled end of the legislative session in 15 days because of a showdown over Medicaid expansion.

    Asked by reporters if he agreed that it was already too late to meet their deadline, House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, said he did.

    "I would assume most likely we're looking at a special session," Crisafulli said. ...

    House Speaker Steve Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island, said the federal government has changed its position on Medicaid expansion.
  8. Florida's top healthcare administrator wins support of Senate panel

    Blog

    A Senate panel threw its support behind Florida’s top healthcare administrator Wednesday, but only after grilling her for more than 60 minutes about the deepening impasse over the healthcare budget.

    The Senate Ethics and Elections Committee voted 8-1 to recommend that Agency for Health Care Administration Secretary Elizabeth Dudek keep her job.

    Dudek faced a series of tough questions about her agency’s negotiations with the federal government over the future of the federal-state hospital funding program known as the Low Income Pool. The $2.2 billion program, which helps hospitals that treat low-income patients, is scheduled to expire in June unless the state and federal government agree on a successor program....

  9. Florida to make formal petition for LIP renewal

    Blog

    One day after a top federal official informed Florida that the future of the Low Income Pool is tied to Medicaid expansion, Florida Medicaid Director Justin Senior sent a letter back, saying the two healthcare funding issues should be kept separate....

  10. School guns proposals stalled in Florida Senate

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — A proposal that would allow certain teachers to carry guns in public schools is on life support after the Senate Education Committee declined to vote on it for the second meeting in a row.

    The measure (Senate Bill 180) could still come up as an amendment to a related bill.

    But Senate Education Committee Chairman John Legg, R-Trinity, has been adamantly against it. He was hopeful that the full Senate would side with him if the measure made its way to the floor....

  11. Pressure builds over hospital funding

    Blog

    Federal health officials turned up the pressure on Florida Tuesday, saying the future of $1.3 billion in federal funding for hospitals that treat low-income patients is tied to whether the Legislature expands Medicaid.

    In a letter to Florida’s Medicaid director, a top federal official wrote that the federal government is willing to consider the state’s request to keep the so-called Low Income Pool (LIP) in place after the program ends in June. But U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Acting Director Vikki Wachino noted "the state's expansion status is an important consideration in our approach regarding extending the LIP program."...

  12. Tension mounts in Tallahassee over Medicaid expansion, hospital funding

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Federal health officials turned up the pressure on Florida Tuesday, saying the future of $1.3 billion in federal funding for hospitals that treat low-income patients is tied to whether the Legislature expands Medicaid.

    In a letter to Florida's Medicaid director, a top federal official wrote that the federal government is willing to consider the state's request to keep the so-called Low Income Pool (LIP) in place after the program ends in June. But U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Acting Director Vikki Wachino noted "the state's expansion status is an important consideration in our approach regarding extending the LIP program."...

  13. Gov. Rick Scott signs bill that scales back testing

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Responding to a parent-driven charge to scale back testing in public schools, Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday signed legislation to eliminate at least one exam and delay the release of school grades until the other exams are deemed valid.

    But some parent and teacher groups say the Republican governor should do more to ease the burden on schoolchildren.

    The statewide teachers union called on Scott to work with state education officials to ensure that most of the school year is devoted to instruction — and to ensure that no students or teachers are penalized due to failures in the school accountability system. ...

    Gov. Rick Scott Gov. Scott says he “will keep working to make sure Florida students are not overtested.”
  14. Scott signs proposal to scale back testing

    Blog

    Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday signed a sweeping education bill aimed at reducing the testing requirements for public schoolchildren.

    In addition to eliminating an 11th grade English exam and capping the amount of time students can spend taking state-mandated tests, the bill (HB 7069) delays the release of school grades and teacher evaluations until the new Florida Standards Assessments are deemed valid....

  15. Scott signs Florida testing bill

    Blog

    Gov. Rick Scott on Tuesday signed a sweeping education bill aimed at reducing the testing requirements for public schoolchildren.

    In addition to eliminating an 11th grade English exam and capping the amount of time students can spend taking state-mandated tests, the bill (HB 7069) delays the release of school grades and teacher evaluations until the new Florida Standards Assessments are deemed valid....