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PNS Daily Newscast - September 28, 2020 

The New York Times reports President Trump's tax returns show chronic losses; and will climate change make it as a topic in the first presidential debate?

2020Talks - September 28, 2020 

The New York Times obtains President Trump's tax returns, showing chronic loss and debts coming due. And Judge Amy Coney Barrett is Trump's nominee to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Town Hall Meetings: "Bailing Out" Florida's Safety Net

September 22, 2008

Panama City, FA - While Congress is discussing the largest bailout of financial institutions since the Great Depression, some Florida advocates want to know why there's no bailout for a failing healthcare system.

Serious illness is the major cause of personal bankruptcy, and four million Floridians do not have health insurance. A coalition of nonprofit organizations is holding a series of four town hall meetings across the state, allowing legislators to hear from those who already are suffering as a result of Florida's budget cuts.

Florida CHAIN (Community Health Action Information Network) is one of the meeting sponsors. Executive Director Laura Goodhue calls it an effort to find a "cure," and she believes the first step should be to hold insurance companies accountable - to make sure patients get what they're paying for, rather than bailing the companies out of financial trouble.

"Healthy Floridians can promote a healthy economy, and I think they go hand in hand. Our leaders need to show leadership in finding solutions that don't hurt our most vulnerable citizens and take away needed health care services that they depend on."

And yet, budget cutbacks are forcing state lawmakers to make tough decisions about how Florida's tax dollars are spent. Dave Bruns, with event cosponsor Florida's People, Florida's Promise, says his coalition members are trying to protect the state's safety net. He says legislators have even considered cutting funds to Medicaid Hospice programs, but does not believe cutbacks should be at the expense of the state's most vulnerable citizens.

"These things are very tough challenges, and what we're asking Florida leaders is to step up to this tough challenge. We're in a historic crisis, and we need historic leadership."

Bruns says reweaving Florida's safety net requires innovative solutions, including public-private partnerships. He hopes the process will begin with making legislators aware of the crisis, at these town hall meetings.

Gina Presson/Steve Powers, Public News Service - FL