News at noon: Gov. DeSantis appoints Carlos Muñiz to Florida Supreme Court; Pam Bondi headed to Washington to work with lobbying firm; and more

Here are the top five latest headlines and updates on
Check for the latest breaking news and developments
Check for the latest breaking news and developments
Published Jan. 22, 2019

Here are the top five latest headlines and updates on

Gov. DeSantis appoints Carlos Muñiz to Florida Supreme Court

Gov. Ron DeSantis has named Carlos Muñiz, a former lawyer for Gov. Jeb Bush who has never been a judge, to the Florida Supreme Court. Muñiz was working as general counsel for U.S. Department of Education Secretary Betsy DeVos before joining the court. DeSantis on Tuesday noted Muñiz is the first appointee in decades not to previously serve as a judge, but praised his "intellectual firepower." Muñiz was also a top deputy for former Attorney General Pam Bondi for three years, where he helped defend the office's decision to sit out a lawsuit against Trump University, according to the Associated Press.

Does 'Live PD' make Pasco County look bad to tourists? This survey says nope

Last summer, a pair of county commissioners publicly questioned the image of Pasco County as portrayed on the cable-network television show Live PD. Commissioners Jack Mariano and Kathryn Starkey said they worried that the twice-weekly A&E show that follows deputies in real-time had created an undesirable perception of Pasco. The commissioners said they feared the show was counter-productive to the county's efforts to build a favorable business climate for economic development and tourism. It turns out, the commissioners' concerns may have been overstated, at least when it comes to tourism. A recently released survey of tourists in Pasco showed that most respondents didn't know or didn't care about Pasco's role in the television show.

Pam Bondi headed to Washington to work with lobbying firm

Former Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi is heading to Washington to take a new post with a leading lobbying firm. Ballard Partners announced Tuesday the well-known Republican politician will head the firm's new regulatory compliance office. The firm is headed by Brian Ballard, who has close ties to President Donald Trump. Bondi left office earlier this month after serving two terms as attorney general. Ballard Partners says Bondi will assist large companies implement policies dealing with various issues such as data privacy and opioid abuse.

William Shatner tries to stop Clearwater man who claims to be his son from changing his last name to Shatner

Peter Sloan has claimed for decades that William Shatner is his biological dad, but the 87-year-old actor and father of three daughters denies the blood tie. Still, Sloan said he will not be denied what he calls his "birth right" — the Shatner name. So, on Jan. 14, the longtime Tampa resident now residing in Clearwater petitioned the Pinellas County court to have his name legally changed to "Peter Shatner." One week later, a Miami attorney representing Shatner emailed Sloan a cease and desist order, threatening further legal action if he moves forward with the name change.

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It's hard to stomach a Hall of Fame with Barry Bonds, Roger Clemens in it

Today, another Hall of Fame class is announced, and with it, at least for Times sports columnist Martin Fennelly, comes the need to confront the fact that Roger Clemens and Barry Bonds are inexorably edging closer to induction. In fact, they might get in today. And that will about do it. Baseball and the Hall will forever be tainted if these cheaters are enshrined, Martin writes. Maybe it's just him. He votes for the Hall. He never voted for Clemens and Bonds. And he never will. People can argue with him, throw numbers at him, present logic to him. He'll stop voting before he changes his mind. His gut says cheaters don't belong.

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