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Buzz 11.21


Crist Disappointed in Scott
Former Florida Governor Charlie Crist was in town on Monday, Nov. 18, and the local media was given a few minutes with him at the Hilton Garden Inn on Pensacola Beach.

The Independent News wanted to know why he was re-entering politics. In 2010, Crist chose to run for the U.S. Senate rather than seeking a second term as governor. After it was clear he wouldn’t win the Republican nomination, Crist switched to an Independent and eventually lost the senate seat to Republican Marco Rubio in the general election.

Why run?

Crist said, “Because frankly my heart bleeds for Florida. I’m disappointed in this administration, disappointed in its lack of focus on education.”
He pointed out how Gov. Rick Scott cut education in his first year by $1.3 billion. In his second year, Scott cut higher education by $300 million.

“I’m running because we have a lot of children that deserve a better education,” he said. He added that teachers deserve to be respected rather than fooled by promises of $2,500 bonuses the year before the election—bonuses that haven’t materialized, according to Crist.

“I’ve talked to teachers all over the state and they are telling me this is like fraud,” said Crist. “I think we can do better. I know we can.”

Domestic Partnership Registry Crosses First Hurdle
“I’m very proud of the council tonight,” Pensacola City Councilman Larry B. Johnson said before a crowded council chamber on Thursday, Nov. 14. Johnson’s remark came shortly before the council voted 7-1 to adopt his proposed ordinance establishing a Domestic Partnership Registry in the city.

The ordinance will have one more hearing and council vote on Dec. 12, before it will go to the mayor for his signature.

The council heard from 18 members of the public including clergy, attorneys, local business leaders, and both LGBT and heterosexual Pensacolians whose lives the registry would affect, all advocating for the ordinance’s approval.

“It’s not the differences that bring us here; it’s our similarities,” Jess Patton told the council. Patton explained that she attended the meeting with her wife and child, and that the ordinance would provide protection for her family.

“I came here just to ask you for that,” said Patton. “That’s all that I want, is to protect the one that I love and the child that I also love.”

Domestic Partnership Registries are not intended to equate with marriage, but provide some basic legal rights for two people who are not able to legally marry or for two people who do not want a marriage—i.e. a non-family caretaker, elderly couples who stand to lose benefits if they were to wed, or couples who simply don’t want to marry—but whose lives are intertwined and would benefit from the legal rights that convey with a domestic partnership.

The Domestic Partnership Registry allows two unmarried cohabitating people to register as domestic partners with the city. As domestic partners, the registered parties will have rights such as healthcare facility visitation, the ability to make healthcare decisions in the event a partner is incapacitated, participation in a dependent’s education, notification in case of an emergency, correctional facility visitation, and funeral/burial decisions.

Cohabitating individuals can file an affidavit of domestic partnership with the City, pay required fees, and the City Clerk then issues a certificate and laminated card as documentation of the partnership. Domestic partnerships could be terminated by filing an affidavit with the Clerk as well.

Once the mayor signs the proposal into law, Pensacola will become one of 15 cities and counties in Florida with DPRs and joins with Leon County as the only municipality north of Gainesville with a registry, a step in the right direction many believe.