Issues has responded to the community’s need for in-depth representation of local concerns for almost 30 years, bringing together local leaders and journalists to discuss the important topics facing South Florida. The weekly half-hour public affairs and news program provides the type of extensive and probing analysis that addresses the community’s continuous concerns.
Friday, September 4 @ 7:30 PM Sunday, September 6 @ 12:00 PM
Xavier Suarez on County Transportation – “No Leadership” Late Thursday night, Miami-Dade County Commissioners gave an initial approval to Mayor Carlos Gimenez's $6.8 billion budget -- but not without criticism from environmentalists concerned that climate change is not a priority. Another critic of Gimenez and his budget, County Commissioner Xavier Suarez, launched television ads earlier this week criticizing the mayor for transferring desperately needed transportation funds to finance other projects. Is all the blame on Mayor Gimenez? What is the commission’s responsibility?
Guest: Xavier Suarez, Miami-Dade County Commission, Dist. 7
MDX’s Strategic Plan In June, the Miami Herald's Doug Hanks - as a guest on this program - reported on their readers' "toll - shock" after calculating how much they were actually spending driving Miami-Dade expressways. Since then, the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority (MDX) initiated a customer loyalty program, giving cash back to customers who met certain criteria from the MDX year-end surplus. County Mayor Carlos Gimenez was vocal about his opposition to this - questioning the refunds when MDX could just lower tolls. One big question still remains -- have increased tolls been beneficial to decreasing congestion?
Guest: Louis Martinez, Miami-Dade Expressway Authority
M-D ID Cards – An Immigration Issue? As early as next year, identification cards could be available to Miami-Dade County residents. This week, county commissioners unanimously voted to endorse the idea and ordered a study to determine the cost. Proponents claim the ID cards will benefit the area's more vulnerable residents such as domestic violence victims and the homeless -- since proof of address could be listed as a shelter. But, there is also no need for proof of citizenship. The Libre Initiative sees this as an example of a broken immigration system and Miami-Dade is “trying to find limited solutions to the problem”.
Friday, August 28 @ 7:30 PM Sunday, August 30 @ 12:00 PM
Florida Legislative Special Session Redistricting is a process that always stirs up controversy. Last week, lawmakers ended the special session on a low and costly note. After a much heated debate, legislators could not come to an agreement on a congressional map. They headed to court on Monday to argue their differences. According to figures released Monday by the Florida Senate, June’s special session cost taxpayers more than $651,000 due to a bitter disagreement between the House and Senate over healthcare spending and Medicaid expansion. What can we expect? State Senator Anitere Flores joins Helen Ferre to discuss the special session.
Guest: State Sen. Anitere Flores, (R) Dist. 37
Miami-Dade County Budget, Soccer Stadium and Zapata Last month, Mayor Carlos Gimenez introduced the county’s 2015 to 2016 proposed budget, which included $120 million in additional property tax funds from increased real estate values and new construction. But what does this mean for homeowners? And it’s not unusual for taxpayers to fund Miami-Dade politicians’ educational programs, but some say Commissioner Juan Carlos Zapata went too far to have his Harvard degree paid for. The Miami Herald’s Doug Hanks and Barry University’s Sean Foreman joins Helen Ferre to discuss these topics and David Beckham’s third attempt at a soccer stadium deal.
Guests: Sean Foreman, Ph.D., Barry University Doug Hanks, The Miami Herald
Friday, August 21 @ 7:30 PM Sunday, August 22 @ 12:00 PM
Guest Host: Henry Mack
Protecting South Florida’s Aging 2015 marks the 50th anniversary of Medicare, Medicaid and the Older Americans Act as well as the 80th anniversary of Social Security. As Florida’s population of 65 and over grows - and is anticipated to nearly double by 2040 - many are asking for improvements to these programs to ensure proper long-term care for the aging. Former State Representative Elaine Bloom discusses how tax deductions and other support systems are inherent in assisting South Florida’s growing elderly population. What should presidential candidates consider when it comes to care for seniors?
Guest: Former State Rep. Elaine Bloom, Plaza Health Network
Uber Fans Save App in Palm Beach & Broward The popular ride-sharing app, Uber, has fought to stay in both Broward and Palm Beach counties -- recently going toe-to-toe with county commissioners over threats of tougher regulations that align them with traditional taxis. In the end, both county commissions stood down from these threats - a main reason was due to a tremendous backlash from Uber users, demanding to keep this beloved service in their areas. Miami-Dade County is next to face-off with Uber. The county has also made it clear that new regulations are needed to keep the service in town, but will commissioners stand strong against them, or listen to the public and back down?
Friday, August 14 @ 7:30 PM Sunday, August 16 @ 12:00 PM
Congressman Ted Deutch on Iran Deal & Social Security As Social Security turns 80 this week, many Americans, especially those decades from retirement age, are asking if this much relied upon program will still be there for them. Republicans are concerned that because the account has more IOUs than money, it needs a re-boot, and fast; the current statistics project, if nothing is done, the program will run dry soon. Congressman Ted Deutch, a Democrat whose district includes some of the largest retirement communities in South Florida, says there is no emergency regarding Social Security and that it is "fundamentally strong". The congressman joins Helen to discuss this and why he cannot vote for President Obama’s Iran Nuclear Deal.Guest:
Guest: U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch, (D) District 21
Marlins’ Contract Restricts Soccer in Miami The area west of Marlins Park was, at one time, looked at as an unfavorable location for a soccer stadium, due in part to the controversy that surrounded the contract for the facility. Now that the original waterfront site is off the table, David Beckham and his partners have changed their tune and feel this inland site can indeed be the right location to build a "world class stadium". But the location doesn't come without its challenges - the Marlins’ stadium deal gives the team priority over soccer, including game scheduling, construction and a restriction on soccer ads that may conflict with a major Marlins’ sponsor. Will these restrictions be a deal-breaker?
Friday, August 7 @ 7:30 PM Sunday, August 9 @ 12:00 PM
Henry Mack, Guest Host
Superintendent Carvalho on New M-D School Offerings
As parents and students prepare for the 2015-16 school year, Miami-Dade County Public Schools has announced new initiatives and programs that will be implemented. These new offerings include additional Magnet programs and expanding STEM programs. Superintendent Alberto Carvalho discusses these plans and the need to find an alternative option to discipline students.
Guest: Alberto Carvalho, Miami-Dade County Public Schools
Analysis of First GOP Primary Debate
Thursday night, the first of several Republican primary debates took place in Ohio to an enthusiastic crowd and a record-breaking TV viewing audience. With ten candidates participating, it was a lengthy debate, lasting two hours. Although many topics were discussed, such as foreign policy, the economy and the candidates’ electability, there were some topics that were notably overlooked such as climate change. Our panel discusses some of the stand-out moments and whether there was clear victor.
Guests: Sean Foreman, Ph.D., Barry University Antonio Lopez, Recusant Media Edward J. Pozzuoli, Esq., Tripp Scott Law Firm