The Point, March 9, 2021: Age Threshold For Florida COVID-19 Vaccinations Drops To 60


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• News Service of Florida: COVID-19 Vaccinations To Start For Floridians 60 And Older. “After focusing for more than two months on vaccinating seniors against COVID-19, Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday the state will authorize giving shots to people ages 60 and older. The change will take effect March 15 and was announced after more than 2.64 million people ages 65 and older have been vaccinated.”

• WUFT News: Alachua County Youth Fair And Livestock Show Opens New Fairgrounds. “After years of planning and months of building, the new Alachua County and Agriculture and Equestrian Center in Newberry opened Saturday with the annual Alachua County Youth Fair and Livestock Show. The agricultural event runs through Tuesday.”

• WUFT News: Plan To Restore Springs In The Santa Fe River Shows A Promising But Challenging Year Ahead. “Some solutions that the Florida Springs Institute offers in efforts to tackle these lingering issues are implementing carrying capacity limits in all public springs, reducing groundwater pumping to one-third of current regional pumping levels and complying with Florida’s numeric nutrient standard for nitrate nitrogen in springs of 0.35 parts per million.”

• WUFT News: You Have Until March 13 To Vote Early In Gainesville’s 2021 Regular Election. “Two candidates qualified in each city commission race: District 1 incumbent Gigi Simmons will face Desmon Duncan-Walker, and for the at-large seat, incumbent Gail Johnson will face Gabe Kaimowitz. Here are the early voting times and locations.”

• Main Street Daily News: Transfer of University Avenue may face long road. “One example: A transfer would require the state to figure out how to reroute State Road 26—a portion of which is West University—so there’s not a gap in the state road grid. Perhaps more importantly for city leaders, the state and city would have to determine how West University changes would be funded. Currently, most money for changes comes through state funds.”

• WMFE: Ocala-Area Horse Farm Accused Of Shortchanging Foreign Workers Pays $137K In Back Pay And Penalties. “Wavertree Stables near Ocala hired the 29 workers under H-2B visas. The Labor Department says the farm failed to keep accurate records, pay the employees for all the hours they worked or reimburse them for travel as required.”

• WUFT News: Gainesville, Iraqi City Of Duhok Re-Up Sister City Agreement. “Some six thousand miles separate the cities of Gainesville, Florida, and Duhok, Kurdistan, Iraq, but the two are ready to reignite a long-distance friendship. The two cities are participants in a program called Sister Cities International and on Monday morning signed a renewed sister city agreement.”

• WFTS-Tampa Bay: UF researchers helping Florida wineries ramp up sparkling wine production. “To help Florida wineries ramp up their sparkling wine offering, food scientists at the University of Florida are researching how to produce carbonated wine in a fraction of the time. Andrew MacIntosh, a UF/IFAS assistant professor of food science and human nutrition, is working with Florida wineries to teach and encourage more of them to produce carbonated wine.”

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Around the state today

• News4Jax: ‘Vaccine hunters’ using internet to find leftover COVID-19 shots. “Some Floridians who don’t entirely meet the state’s requirements for the COVID-19 vaccine are scouring the internet to get inoculated. One Facebook group calls itself ‘Florida Vaccine Hunters.’ It’s a group in which people share where there are extra doses of the vaccine available.”

• WFSU: Inspector General Report Injected Into Lawsuit Over Florida’s Unemployment System. “Just hours after Gov. Ron DeSantis’ office released the draft report Thursday by Chief Inspector General Melinda Miguel, attorneys for the plaintiffs filed a copy of the report in their lawsuit against the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and Deloitte Consulting, a contractor that helped put in place the state’s CONNECT online unemployment system in 2013.”

• WLRN: The Tug-of-War Over Public Education in Florida. “The state government pushed local school districts to reopen classrooms last fall sooner than elected school board members thought was safe. Some see it as the state standing up for parent choice, while others interpreted it as the state undermining local decision-making.”

• WFSU: Republicans Again Tinkering With Union Membership, Dues. “Rep. Scott Plakon, R-Longwood, says he’s protecting Floridians right to work and collectively bargain, but Democrats and labor unions don’t agree. Plakon’s proposal requires union members to confirm with their employers that they want dues deducted from their paychecks.”

• News Service of Florida: Deloitte defends work on unemployment system. “Officials from a company that played a key role in setting up Florida’s much-criticized online unemployment system defended the firm’s work Monday, as Democratic lawmakers argued it launched ‘something that wasn’t ready’ and was designed by the state to fail.”

• WMFE: Pro-Trump Sabatini Signs On To Challenge Conservative Congressman Daniel Webster. “U.S. Rep. Daniel Webster is an unlikely target for a pro-Trump primary challenger. The Republican, who represents The Villages and surrounding areas, has been a staunch supporter of the former president. But that isn’t stopping Anthony Sabatini.”

• New York Times ($): A Family’s Search for Answers: Did Their Brother Die of Covid? “The Hidalgo siblings buried their younger brother, Patrick, six days after he had texted them in the middle of the night last March to say that something was wrong: He was gasping for air. Two days after that, paramedics found his body in his Miami Beach apartment. One of his hands still held a rosary.”

• CBS Tampa Bay: Tampa Suspends Sale Of Alcohol At Three Local Bars. “MacDinton’s Irish Pub, Club Skye and Club Prana were found to have violated both city and county coronavirus restrictions.”

• WGCU: A Community Garden in Immokalee Offers Culinary Links to Home. “There is a community garden tucked behind the Mission Peniel food distribution and outreach center in Immokalee. It’s called ‘Cultivating Abundance’ and features produce not normally found in stores, but which is prolific in the native countries of many of the town’s inhabitants.”

From NPR News

• Health: CDC Says It’s Safe For Vaccinated People To Do These Activities

• Health: ‘War Doesn’t Even Compare’: A Year In The Life Of A Traveling Nurse

• Business: Instagram Suggested Posts To Users. It Served Up COVID-19 Falsehoods, Study Finds

• National: George Floyd Case: Jury Selection In Chauvin Trial Delayed Over Murder Charge Appeal

• National: What The $300 A Month Child Benefit Could Mean For A Family On The Edge

• Politics: Undocumented Venezuelans Given Protected Status In United States

• Books: Walter Isaacson’s ‘Code Breaker’ Spotlights The Woman At The Forefront Of CRISPR

• Science: A 300-Year-Old Tale Of One Woman’s Quest To Stop A Deadly Virus

• Science: Cloning Of Ferret Could Help Prevent Other Animals’ Extinctions

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

About WUFT News

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news

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