House Republicans propose slashing Ayala's budget by $1.3 million:
Republicans in the state House want to cut the Ninth Circuit State Attorney's Office budget by eliminating millions of dollars and 21 positions after Orange-Osceola State Attorney Aramis Ayala announced she wouldn't seek the death penalty during her administration. The money would be moved into a fund for prosecutors who have been reassigned death penalty cases and have additional costs. Several Republican lawmakers, including House Speaker Richard Corcoran, have called for Ayala's suspension after she was removed by Gov. Rick Scott from the state's prosecution of murder suspect Markeith Loyd. In a statement, Ayala says legislators' "political posturing" could "severely impact this agency's ability to effectively prosecute crimes, threaten public safety and ultimately have an economic impact on the central Florida community."
Orange County property appraiser battles with theme parks over taxes:
Disney World, Universal Orlando and Sea World have joined together to fight against Orange County Property Appraiser Rick Singh because he's insisting they pay what they owe. The Associated Press reports Singh's office has been hit with lawsuits by theme parks after they say he's appraised them higher than the office has in the past. From 2014 to 2016, Disney's tax bill jumped from $84.5 million to $102.6 million, while Universal's taxes went from $148.6 million to $297 million. Singh says the real issue is how low these properties were valued before he took office. "When the entire theme park of Magic Kingdom is assessed less than the Dr. Phillips Performing Arts Center, that's a problem," Singh told the podcast Orlando Tourism Report.
President Trump's Mar-a-Lago retreat doesn't keep any visitor logs:
Democrats tried to force the private club in Palm Beach to reveal its visitors, but the Trump-dubbed "Winter White House" apparently doesn't keep track of who's coming and going inside the building, even when the president is in, according to Politico. Guests also don't have to undergo rigorous background checks, bomb-sniffing dogs or weapon screenings.
Man finds 11-pound marijuana package on shores of Daytona Beach:
Jeff Stolowitz told authorities he was on his morning walk when he found a curious, blunt-like package near the water's edge. The package appeared to have blood on it, so he called police. Volusia County Beach Safety officers arrived to find some poorly wrapped weed that needed a better roller. And no, you can't help burn the evidence because officers destroyed the package.