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Can This Millennial Lawyer Be Florida’s First Democratic Attorney General In 17 years?

What’s New With This Story: 

Ryan Torrens is the only Democrat who has announced a 2018 campaign for Florida Attorney General so far.  

-Torrens is a lawyer from Tampa, who is only 32 years old. 

-He said in a wide ranging interview with RISE NEWS, that he wants to roll back what he views as a politicized AG’s office. He also had harsh words for the current AG, Pam Bondi. 

-Torrens has been barnstorming around the state, meeting with donors and building grassroots support for his campaign. He talked to RISE NEWS at length about his views on the most pressing issues of the day during a campaign swing through South Florida. 

 


 

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WATCH ANOTHER STORY: “Impeach Trump” Projected on Miami Beach Building During Art Basel

Welcome To The Florida Keys, Where The Chickens Sleep In Trees (That Rhymes)

After Hurricane Irma carved a large swath of destruction across the natural landscape of the Florida Keys, there are signs that life is starting to return to normal there.

On Sugarloaf Key for example, the chickens have returned to their perches in trees.

This may be a strange sight for many in South Florida, but according to Keys resident Rodney Richardson- this is pretty normal.

And that’s a good thing.

Take a look at the funny scene in a video Richardson sent to RISE NEWS:

Have you ever seen this type of thing in your neighborhood?

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Hurricane Irma May End Up Costing This Miami Dentist $100,000

For most in South Florida, Hurricane Irma will be remembered as a dodged bullet.

A storm that devastated other parts of the world and state managed to miss us on the mainland.

But for select pockets of people, Irma is the worst hurricane they’ve ever experienced.

One of those unlucky few is Mark Weiss.

Weiss is a Miami native who is no stranger to hurricanes.

A dentist, he lives on the inter-coastal waterway in the Keystone Point neighborhood of North Miami.

During Irma, he and his family evacuated about 20 minutes north to Davie, FL where they rode out the storm at his sister’s house.

When he finally was able to get home a few days after Irma hit Florida, Weiss was shocked by what he found.

The scope of the damage to Mark Weiss’ home. He estimates it could cost him around $100,000. Photo: RISE NEWS

Weiss’ boat was left intact during Irma, but the wooden dock was not as lucky. Photo: RISE NEWS.

The line of debris and seagrass shows how high the water came on his property during Hurricane Irma. Photo: RISE NEWS

A concrete slab was split in two during the storm. Photo: RISE NEWS

The seawall that protects his home from eroding away into the water was completely destroyed. His dock was destroyed and a large piece of concrete-painted like a basketball court, had buckled up into the air.

“It looks like someone dropped a bomb on my backyard,” a still stunned Weiss told RISE NEWS, a little over an hour after returning home. “I expected to lose the dock, but I did not expect this.”

His boat was still secured the way he had left and it had no damage.

But the destroyed seawall was what had his attention.

“This is the pice you pay for living here”, Weiss said. “We plan and God laughs and see’s how resilient we are.

Weiss said that the seawall is not covered by his insurance because it is technically not on his property.

Read More: Senator Tried To Use Connection To FPL Lobbyist To Get Power On For Her Family Post Irma

He estimates that to rebuild the seawall, it will cost him around $100,000.

And if he doesn’t rebuild the seawall then the house would be in danger of eroding into the water.

In terms of personal cost, Irma will be the worst hurricane his family has ever faced.

A few blocks away from Weiss in the same area of Keystone Point, Edwin Birotte surveyed the damage to his property.

He and his wife Maria stayed at their home during Irma.

They regret staying.

“If I had a second opportunity, I would leave,” Birotte said. “I wouldn’t be surprised if a few tornadoes came through here just because of the amount of damage.”

One of the more common damaged pieces of property in South Florida were wooden fences.

But Birotte’s fence damage was to an extreme level.

At over 100 feet long and six feet high, his fence was totally leveled in the storm.

Birotte was born in New Jersey and spent many years in Queens so Irma was a very strange experience.

“It’s fear for your life for about 20 hours in a row,” Birotte said. “Every 15 minutes or so, we ran to the bathroom to hide during the tornado warnings.”

He expects his insurance to cover the cost of the fence.

Hurricane Irma had special scorn for Edwin Birotte’s 100 foot fence. Photo: RISE NEWS

Edwin Birotte looks over Hurricane Irma damage in his front yard. Photo: RISE NEWS

What’s left of Edwin Birotte’s 100 foot fence. Photo: RISE NEWS

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Watch More: Senator Tried To Use Connection To FPL Lobbyist To Get Power On For Her Family Post Irma 

WATCH: OJ Simpson Is Getting Out Of Prison And Florida Is SO NOT READY For It

We have spared no expense in bringing to your our best guess of what Florida will look like after OJ Simpson comes to the Sunshine after being released from prison.

This is very serious indeed.

 

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WATCH: An Iconic Miami Book Business Finds A Way To Grow In The Age Of Amazon

In the cutthroat world of book retailers, there are many brands that compete with each other to win consumers over.

Outlets like Barnes & Noble offer deals and memberships in order to incentivize book enthusiasts to sign up and buy their products.

Books & Books is among them, but with its mission of providing avid readers top quality books and creating a community of readers.

It began as a dream that flourished into a reality.

“It started in 1982, I started it, I had been teaching [in high school for a few years] and I had always wanted to be in the book business,” Mitchell Kaplan, owner and founder of Books and Books said in an interview with RISE NEWS. “It had started in Coral Gables, in a small space in about 500 square feet, and that’s how it came about.”

In this era of Amazon dominance, Books & Books has carved out a unique model in order to grow.

It offers memberships that ensure discounts on all purchases and a community feel at the various locations.

Its mission is to attract the most loyal readers in the book community.

“I think from the beginning, we decided that really what we were all about was to provide a community gathering place,” Kaplan said when discussing Books & Books’ mission of creating a community for readers to join. “I don’t think it so much differentiates us [from other booksellers like it did years ago], but it did then. And we also decided to have lots of book events, so we have a lot of authors coming in right from the beginning when we opened the bookshop.”

Holding book events is one way that Books & Books tries to keep its customer base from diminishing.

It is also a co-founder of the Miami Book Fair and is heavily involved with it.

Another advantage is Books & Books’ multitude of locations across South Florida, saving it from being limited to only Coral Gables.

“And the other thing that differentiates us a little bit is that we have more than one location,” explained Kaplan. “We now have now six or seven different locations in South Florida and abroad. And the other thing is that each one of our stores is very distinct and unusual from one another.”

Staff dedicated to providing top quality service to shoppers also maintains each Books & Books location.

Although every Books & Books store is unique in structure, they all share the same services nonetheless, such as a café at every store.

This helps if customers wish to sit down and have a nice meal.

But while Books & Books is on a steady roll with its success, one can only wonder on how it is able to be successful in the book market with different competitors trying to win customers over.

One such competitor would be Amazon, which has recently started opening bookstores in certain locations around the US.

Each store sells books while also providing Amazon-related products on display as well.

However, Kaplan does not believe believe that his business is doomed.

“Well, Amazon has been operating now for over 20 years and of course [they’ve been very successful],” Kaplan said. “So I don’t think it’s going to have that much of a greater effect.”

Books & Books is not even slightly worried about the creation of Amazon brick and mortar stores.

“We’ve already been affected by Amazon, so the decision to open bookstores probably won’t make that much of a difference,” said Kaplan.

Books & Books is the ideal place for those looking to find the next big book to read while also being with a community full of ardent readers.

Its mission is one that celebrates literature and helping those who are fond of the medium to gather and share their literary interests.

“I would say ‘come on in and take a look,’” Kaplan said. “If you’re a book lover you’ll be very surprised.”

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WATCH: Protestors In Hollywood Clash Over City’s Racial History

Hundreds of protestors and counter-protestors descended upon Hollywood city hall today. They clashed over whether the city should change the names of three streets that are named after Confederate leaders. One of the streets is even named after the founder of the KKK.

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Watch Now: This Little Havana lady REALLY loves Donald Trump

 

 

WATCH: You Have To See This Incredible Bryant Denny Stadium Wedding Cake

We love cakes.

We love Alabama football.

What else do you really need to know?

This cake was the wedding cake for Justin and Taylor Woljevach, both UA grads.

It was made by Peace, Love, & Cakes in Bryan, Texas.

“When the bride walked in through the reception doors, her reaction was the most exciting. She was just giggling. It was the cutest thing I’ve ever seen,” Steffany Bowling told AL.com. “She told me, ‘You made our dream come true.’ That’s why I do this.”

Pretty awesome.

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