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Today’s top Florida stories
• WLRN: The Tumult Of A Pandemic Spring Break: How Florida’s ‘Open’ Message Lured Tourists. “The COVID-19 pandemic is not over, even after a long and painful year. Spring break always attracts attention but this year, there’s another reason spring breakers are coming to Florida. Gov. Ron DeSantis basically invited them…”
• Fresh Take Florida: Bill Requiring Mandatory Moment Of Silence In Florida Public Schools Passes House – But Not Without Controversy. “Florida’s Legislature is on the verge of requiring public schools across the state to set aside one to two minutes of silence every morning, adding to the mix of school announcements, the Pledge of Allegiance and roll calls.”
• WINK: Florida Senate approves online sales tax bill. “It would add a 6% tax to online purchases, making out-of-state retailers responsible for giving that money back to the State of Florida. This is already something Floridians are supposed to pay, but most people either don’t know about it or don’t pay it because it isn’t strongly enforced.”
• WFSU: First Draft Of 2021-22 House, Senate Education Plans Shows $500M Gap. “Both chambers have released the first drafts of what will eventually become the state’s spending plan for the next fiscal year.”
• News Service of Florida: Florida House passes bill to allow guns at churches that share locations with schools. “Florida law generally allows people to carry concealed weapons at churches, synagogues, mosques and other religious institutions, but it bars being armed on school properties. That leads to people being prevented from carrying guns on properties shared by religious institutions and schools.”
• WFTS-Tampa Bay: 16 and 17-year-olds eligible for Pfizer vaccine April 5. “The state previously announced eligibility will open up to all Floridians 18 and older on April 5. It’s now confirmed starting the same day, 16 and 17-year-olds will also be eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine.”
• News4Jax: Mayor Curry opts to end Jacksonville’s mask mandate. “Curry said that even though he decided to lift the mandate, businesses can still require customers to wear masks.”
• Associated Press: Florida To Feds: Allow Cruise Ships To Operate Or We’ll Sue. “Gov. Ron DeSantis and state Attorney General Ashley Moody said Friday that the state is being harmed economically by the industry’s U.S. shutdown.”
• Gainesville Sun ($): Gainesville asks feds to investigate Alachua County over CARES Act funds. “Gainesville leaders want the U.S. Treasury Department to investigate whether Alachua County has violated ‘the very standards of accountability and transparency’ required by the federal government in withholding some $2.6 million in coronavirus CARES relief funds that city officials contend is owed to the city.”
• NBC Miami: Legendary Former UM, FAU Football Coach Howard Schnellenberger Dies at 87. “Howard Schnellenberger, who led the Miami Hurricanes football team to their first national championship while setting the stage for one of the top dynasties in the sport, died Saturday at the age of 87.”
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From NPR News
• Business: Microsoft, Facebook, Uber Plan To Reopen Offices
• National: Why Nearly All Mass Shooters Are Men
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.