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  • State tax cuts to be tougher, Bush says
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  • Forecasters get a better fix on fury
  • Status of air base under review
  • Judge delays trial for 8 accused in inmate death

  • From the state wire

  • Hurricane Jeanne appears on track to hit Florida's east coast
  • Rumor mill working overtime after Florida hurricanes
  • Developments associated with Hurricanes Ivan and Jeanne
  • Four killed in Panhandle plane crash were on Ivan charity mission
  • Hurricane Frances caused estimated $4.4 billion in insured damage
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  • USF forces administrators to resign over test score changes
  • Man's death at Universal Studios ruled accidental
  • State child welfare workers in Miami fail to do background checks
  • Hurricane Jeanne heads toward southeast U.S. coast
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  • Mistrial declared in case where teen was target of racial "joke"
  • Panhandle utility wants sewer plant moved to higher ground
  • State employee arrested on theft, bribery charges
  • Homestead house fire kills four children, one adult
  • Pierson leader tries to cut off relief to local fern cutters
  • Florida's high court rules Terri's law unconstitutional
  • Jacksonville students punished for putting stripper pole in dorm
  • FEMA handling nearly 600,000 applications for help
  • Man who killed wife, niece, self also killed mother in 1971
  • Producer sues city over lead ball fired by Miami police
  • Tourism suffers across Florida after pummeling by hurricanes
  • Key dates in the life of Terri Schiavo
  • An excerpt from the unanimous ruling in the Schiavo case
  • Four confirmed dead after small plane crash in Panhandle
  • Correction: Disney-Cruise Line story
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    Status of air base under review

    President Bush's administration is taking another look at turning Homestead Air Base into a commercial airport.

    By CRAIG PITTMAN

    © St. Petersburg Times,
    published June 1, 2001


    As President George W. Bush plans a visit to Everglades National Park next week, his administration is reopening one of the state's biggest recent environmental controversies: whether to convert Homestead Air Force Base into a commercial airport.

    For seven years well-connected builders in Miami-Dade County fought to get possession of the air base -- closed after Hurricane Andrew -- to convert it into a commercial airport.

    They and Homestead officials contended that the move would boost the hurricane-ravaged economy. Environmental groups fought the move because it's between Everglades National Park and Biscayne National Park.

    In the waning days of the Clinton Administration, U.S. Air Force officials decided they would not allow the base to be converted to an airport because it might hurt the Everglades.

    Now that January decision is being reviewed anew by Bush administration officials, according to a letter from Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld to U.S. Sen. John Warner, R-Va.

    In the May 10 letter, Rumsfeld told Warner that he had ordered his staff "to review that decision for consistency with established policy. If I determine there was a deviation from that policy, I will advise you in the matter and take appropriate action."

    Frank Jackalone, senior representative for the Sierra Club in Florida, called Rumsfeld's letter "a little bit of backsliding" by the Bush administration and said he was "extremely disappointed" that Rumsfeld did not just tell Warner that the issue was over.

    Jackalone, who also is co-chair of the Everglades Coalition, a group of about 40 environmental groups, has requested a meeting with the president during his visit to Everglades National Park on Monday to outline his concerns, and hopes that Bush will "clear this up" during his visit.

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