Tia Mitchell, Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau

Tia Mitchell

Tia Mitchell covers state government and politics in the Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald Tallahassee Bureau. She joined the politics team in late 2011 after working as a general assignment reporter in the Times' Tampa bureau for most of the year. Tia is a graduate of Florida A&M University with a degree in journalism. She has worked at the Florida Times-Union newspaper in Jacksonville and has also interned at the Tallahassee Democrat and the Ocala Star-Banner. She is originally from Louisville, Ky.

Phone: (850) 224-7263

Email: tmitchell@tampabay.com

Twitter: @TBTia

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  1. Florida website aimed at the uninsured draws little interest

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Last year, legislators allocated $900,000 to help Floridians find affordable health care through a new state-backed website.

    At the same time, they refused to expand Medicaid or work with the federal government to offer subsidized insurance plans.

    Six months after the launch of the state's effort, called Florida Health Choices, just 30 people have signed up. Another seven plans were canceled either because consumers changed their minds or didn't pay for services....

  2. CFO candidate William Rankin not scheduled to campaign with fellow Democrats

    Blog

    Democrat William Rankin wants to be taken seriously as a challenger to incumbent Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater, a Republican.

    But Rankin has raised very little money going into the 70-day general election campaign period and is getting no love from the establishment. The Florida Democratic Party has ignored Rankin's campaign thus far, and he hasn't been asked to make appearances alongside other Democratic candidates for statewide office....

  3. After Weatherford ultimatum, Pasco sheriff and PHSC strike agreement

    Blog

    At the urging of House Speaker Will Weatherford, the Legislature put language in the stated budget intended to end an ongoing dispute between the Pasco County Sheriff's Office and the Pasco-Hernando State College about management of the law enforcement academy they share.

    It worked. The two sides have finalized a deal that allows the sheriff's office to determine who will direct the college's academy. According to the deadline Weatherford set, if a compromise hadn't been reached by Oct. 1 the academy would have lost accreditation. Weatherford said in May that both entities were to blame....

  4. Florida Polytechnic defies doubters, starts STEM mission

    College

    LAKELAND

    Zachary Weingarten knew right away that Florida Polytechnic University was the school for him.

    As a member of his high school robotics team and creator of a money-making tech website, the Broward County teen was thrilled to hear about a state university focused entirely on science, technology, engineering and math, the curriculum known as STEM.

    His parents weren't such an easy sell. Shown the school's website, they saw that it was such an exact match for their son, they thought he concocted it as an elaborate joke....

    The Innovation, Science and Technology Building, shown in a panograph, houses classrooms, labs and more.
  5. Jeff Atwater ramps up social media on campaign trail

    Blog

    Chief Financial Officer Jeff Atwater is already way ahead of his competition as he seeks reelection. For every $1 his Democratic challenger collected in campaign cash, Atwater has raised $166.

    Still, Atwater is campaigning in earnest. In recent weeks, he has taken advantage of the power of the incumbency by traveling the state to talk about fire prevention and unclaimed property -- part of his official duties -- in between campaign stops. He chronicles everything on his Twitter, Instagram and Facebook pages....

    Jeff Atwater's smartphone app is available on the iTunes and Google play stores.
  6. Health insurance for Florida government employees gets another look

    Blog

    From today's paper:

    Compared with other states, Florida's health insurance plan for government employees is about average.

    It doesn't have the cheapest premiums or the most expensive. The state is generous to its employees, but not to an extreme.

    The implementation of federal health care reform has caused more states to analyze spending. A national study released Tuesday provides a snapshot of each state, including how much public workers pay for health coverage and what they get in return....

  7. Health insurance for Florida employees gets another look

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Compared with other states, Florida's health insurance plan for government employees is about average.

    It doesn't have the cheapest premiums or the most expensive. The state is generous to its employees, but not to an extreme.

    The implementation of federal health care reform has caused more states to analyze spending. A national study released Tuesday provides a snapshot of each state, including how much public workers pay for health coverage and what they get in return....

  8. Elections complaint filed against Charlie Crist for ad shot in public school

    Blog

    Charlie Crist is now facing an elections complaint over an ill-advised campaign ad filmed at a public high school.

    First came the revelation that the ad shot at St. Petersburg High violated Pinellas school district rules prohibiting the use of their property for political purposes. The school's administrators had given Crist permission to shoot the ad, but they shouldn't have. Soon after, the school system's lawyer asked Crist to stop running the ad. ...

  9. Rick Scott affirms support for Medicaid expansion, sticks to pro-business principles on health policy

    Blog

    From today's paper:

    Rick Scott swept into the Governor's Mansion fueled by his scorn for President Barack Obama's health reform law. So, when Scott announced last year that he supported expanding Medicaid — a centerpiece of the Affordable Care Act — the nation was amazed.

    In an interview with the Times/Herald Friday, Scott reaffirmed his support for Florida taking $51 billion in federal money to provide health insurance for up to 1 million poor Floridians. And he said he sees no contradiction in the positions he has taken....

  10. Scott affirms support for Medicaid expansion but sticks to pro-business principles on health policy

    Gubernatorial

    TALLAHASSEE — Rick Scott swept into the Governor's Mansion fueled by his scorn for President Barack Obama's health reform law. So, when Scott announced last year that he supported expanding Medicaid — a centerpiece of the Affordable Care Act — the nation was amazed.

    In an interview with the Times/Herald Friday, Scott reaffirmed his support for Florida taking $51 billion in federal money to provide health insurance for up to 1 million poor Floridians. And he said he sees no contradiction in the positions he has taken....

    Gov. Rick Scott says that he has stayed true to his pro-business views on health policy.
  11. Judge upholds ruling disqualifying write-in candidate for Tampa House seat, opening GOP primary

    Blog

    Leon County Circuit Judge Angela Dempsey has reaffirmed her decision to disqualify a man from running as a write-in candidate for a Tampa Bay House seat. She also refused to call for a temporary halt on her order that the planned August primary be postponed and the House District 64 race between two Republicans be opened up to all voters, regardless of party affiliation, in November....

    Some Hillsborough and Pinellas voters receiving mail-in ballots will get this notice about the postponed House District 64 Republican primary.
  12. Safety net hospitals get break in Medicaid repayment penalty

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE

    Medicaid payment charges lessened

    It was an issue that threatened the bottom lines of Florida's safety net hospitals, which are now breathing a collective sigh of relief.

    The federal government had accused them of erroneously receiving $267 million in Medicaid payments over the past eight years and wanted it back immediately. Hospitals asked for a compromise to soften the blow by spreading the penalty over three years, giving them time to finalize audits and possibly dispute the charges....

  13. Feds OK continuing Medicaid managed care, give hospitals reprieve on money issue

    Blog

    It was an issue that threatened the bottom lines of Florida's safety net hospitals, who are now breathing a sigh of relief.

    The federal government had accused them of receiving $267 million in Medicaid payments erroneously over the past eight years and wanted to recoup the dollars immediately. Hospitals asked for a compromise that would have spread the penalty over three years to soften the blow and give them time to finalize audits and possibly dispute the charges....

  14. Emergency hearing set in dispute over House District 64 race

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — An emergency hearing has been scheduled for Monday in a case that could determine whether or not Rep. James Grant, R-Tampa, has an August primary.

    The write-in candidate challenging Grant, Daniel Matthews, was kicked out of the race by a Leon County judge. Circuit Court Judge Angela Dempsey ruled Thursday that Matthews did not live in the district at the time of qualifying and therefore was ineligible to run for that office. As a result, she also ruled that the primary between Grant and fellow Republican Miriam Steinberg must be moved to November and opened to all voters in the district....

  15. Appeals filed in cases challenging residency of write-in candidates

    Blog

    An emergency hearing has been scheduled for Monday in a case that could determine whether or not Rep. James Grant, R-Tampa, has an August primary.

    The write-in candidate challenging Grant, Daniel Matthews, was kicked out of the race by a Leon County judge. Circuit Court Judge Angela Dempsey ruled Thursday that Matthews did not live in the district at the time of qualifying and therefore was ineligible to run for that office. As a result, she also ruled that the primary between Grant and fellow Republican Miriam Steinberg be moved to November and opened to all voters in the district....