The Point, Oct. 15, 2020: Coronavirus Outbreak Forces Florida-LSU Football Game Postponement

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• WUFT News: After COVID-19 Outbreak, Florida Postpones LSU Game. “The Gators shut down football operations on Tuesday after the positive tests. While subject to change, the game has been moved to Dec. 12.”

• WUFT News: Alachua and Marion Counties Urge Mail-In Voters To Send Their Ballots Early. “‘I think the most powerful endorsement I can give of vote by mail is: I vote by mail,’ (Marion County Supervisor of Elections Wesley) Wilcox said. ‘I had the ballot mailed to me at my house, I voted it at my house, I dropped it back in my mailbox, and I completed the entire round trip in six days.'”

• WUFT News: Meet The Candidates In Alachua County Commission’s District 1 Race. “59-year-old Democratic candidate Mary Alford and 40-year-old Republican candidate Raemi Eagle-Glenn are running for the Alachua County Commission’s District 1 seat.”

• WUFT News: Despite Florida’s Phase 3 Re-openings, Bargoers And Sports Fans Face Uncertainty. “Partying in bars will continue despite the short-term uncertainty of future games. The bars that aren’t temporarily closed are trying their best to make up for lost time and money for their business. J.D. Chester, the owner of JJ’s Tavern, Fat’s, Downtown Fats, Knockin’ Boots Saloon and the Rowdy Reptile, said that business is running as well as can be expected, given the circumstances.”

• WUFT News: ‘Need To Be A Little More Cautious’: Students And Medical Professionals Weigh In On COVID-19’s Impact On Young People. “According to Dr. Cathy Boon, a pediatrician at Gainesville Pediatric Associates, the notion that children and young adults don’t have a legitimate health risk is unrealistic. ‘This idea that nothing happens to young people or that they can’t be sick is kind of ridiculous,’ Boon said. ‘They can get sick just like any of the rest of us.'”

• WUFT News: GRACE Marketplace’s Request For One-Time Additional Funding Approved By County Commission. “GRACE Marketplace, a homeless resource center and shelter in Gainesville, asked the Alachua County Commission to provide additional funding for case management work needed to wrap up the closure of Dignity Village, a homeless tent camp that bordered the shelter. The commission approved the funding, despite it falling outside their budget.”

• Gainesville Sun ($): Alachua County evictions are on the rise, with 188 cases still open. “A state moratorium on evictions has expired but the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention enacted one through Dec. 31. Tenants must fill out a federal form and submit it to their landlords, and groups are working to get the word out about it and other eviction matters.”

• Ocala Star-Banner ($): Marion schools poised to spend $11.5 million in three years on technology. “The school district has budgeted the money to spend in the next three years on new computers, as well as upgrades to its data center, fire alarm systems, repeaters and intercom upgrades that are vital to school safety and security.”

• WUFT News: Chris Cowart Faces Jerry Lawrence In Levy County Superintendent Race. “While these two candidates have very different lives, they share one goal: raising student achievement. In 2018, Levy County ranked 57 out of Florida’s 67 counties in student achievement.”

• WMFE: Ocala adding electric garbage trucks to its fleet. “Ocala is about to introduce the electric garbage truck in Florida. The city plans to swap out five of its 50 diesel trucks for battery-powered ones.”


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Around the state today

• WUSF: Hillsborough Superintendent Announces More Than 300 Teacher Cuts. “The Hillsborough County School District announced plans Wednesday to cut more than 300 teaching positions in an effort to ease budget restrictions.”

• WINK: Florida to begin providing mobile driver licenses next year. “The Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles will offer licenses that will be available through an app on smartphones and tablets. The licenses will be as valid and acceptable as traditional licenses when it comes to verifying identity, age, and driving privileges.”

• WJCT: New St. Augustine Committee Tasked With Amending Building Code To Reduce Flooding. “The St. Augustine City Commission is moving forward with plans to form a new advisory committee tasked with amending the city’s land development code to reduce flooding.

• News Service of Florida: Florida Toll Roads Opposition Minimized, Group Says. “A coalition opposing the three planned toll roads says the state is trying to minimize public comments in opposition to the plan. It says 93% of those who have voiced their opinions are against the plans.”

• Politico: Democrats dominate early voting in Florida. “For the first time ever at this stage of a general election, Democrats here are outvoting Republicans — and by a mammoth 384,000-vote margin through Tuesday.”

• Tampa Bay Times ($): The push for a $15 minimum wage in Florida was winning. Can it survive COVID-19? “Amendment 2, on the ballot this election, would raise the state’s minimum wage, from $8.56 to $10 next September and by a dollar each year thereafter until it reaches $15 in 2026.”

• Lakeland Ledger ($): Frostproof triple homicide: State to seek death penalty against T.J. Wiggins in slayings. “The State Attorney’s Office will seek the death penalty against Tony ‘T.J.’ Wiggins, who’s accused in the July triple homicide of three longtime friends in Frostproof.”

• FOX 13 Tampa Bay: These first maps of Florida have more historical significance than navigational value. “‘…the book and the map are incredibly rare,’ explained Rodney Kite-Powell of the Tampa Bay History Center. ‘There are 20 copies known to exist in the world, and we have one of them in our collection here.'”


From NPR News

• World: Trump Vs. Biden: How Russia Sees The U.S. Election

• World: ‘You Cannot Serve Both God And Money’: Vatican’s Financial Scandal Takes New Twist

• Politics: Facebook And Twitter Limit Sharing ‘New York Post’ Story About Joe Biden

• Health: When False Information Goes Viral, COVID-19 Patient Groups Fight Back

• Health: Sleepless Nights, Hair Loss And Cracked Teeth: Pandemic Stress Takes Its Toll

• Science: Putin Announces Approval Of A 2nd Unproven Coronavirus Vaccine

• Science: Water Or A Sports Drink? These Brain Cells May Decide Which One We Crave

• National: ‘West Wing’ Cast Reunites On HBO Max To Promote Voter Registration

About today’s curator

I’m Ethan Magoc, a news editor at WUFT. Originally from Pennsylvania, I’ve found a home telling Florida stories. I’m part of a team searching each morning for local and state stories that are important to you; please send feedback about today’s edition or ideas for stories we may have missed to emagoc@wuft.org.

About WUFT News

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news @wuft.org

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The Point, Nov. 30, 2020: A 2020 Success Story: The Rehousing Of Dignity Village’s Former Residents

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