The Point, April 16, 2021: Spotlighting Some Of The Factors Influencing Alachua County’s Racial Equity Problem

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• WUFT News: 17 Elected Leaders In Alachua County And Gainesville Met This Week To Discuss Racial Equity Concerns. Here’s Some Of What They Said. “The Alachua County Public Schools Board, Alachua County Commission and Gainesville City Commission held a joint meeting on Wednesday, tackling a wide-ranging agenda focusing on equity and matters such as youth literacy and programming, digital access, transportation and school rezoning.”

• WUFT News: Alachua County Public Schools To Be Rezoned.Alachua County has long awaited a school rezoning. According to Superintendent Dr. Carlee Simon, the first time Alachua County K-12 schools were rezoned was in 1985. The elementary schools were last rezoned in the early 2000s.”

• WUFT News: ‘A Labor of Love’: These Black-Owned Skin Care Businesses Originated In Florida. “Like (Betty) Garrison, Shānna Gilliard is a mother who owns a skin care business based in Gainesville selling body butters, sugar scrubs and beard balm. The idea for her company came from her son, whose severe dry skin made her want to create a safe and effective product for him.”

• WUFT News: UF Researchers Say Marine Products Show Promising Future In Medical Advancements“Many drug research efforts occurring at the University of Florida are focused on marine and natural products that will lead to advancements in medications and treatments for cancers. Luesch was involved in a recent discovery of a marine compound off the east coast of Florida named gatorbulin-1 that could potentially be used in the fight against cancer; this discovery highlights the importance of searching the ocean’s biodiversity.”

• WUFT News: Ten Alachua County Businesses Accused Of Selling Tobacco To Minors. “The county raised the legal tobacco age from 18 to 21 in 2019 but only a year ago began to enforce the restriction. This is not the first time businesses headed to court for tobacco sale violations. In October, 13 businesses answered to charges in court.”

• WUFT News: Music Comes Alive Again for the UF Concert Band Members. “It’s a moment the band members have been waiting on for more than a year. For some, it’s the reason they came to school.”

• WUFT News: Barstool Sports Founder Dave Portnoy Unapologetic During UF Speaking Engagement. “Accent had planned to have Portnoy appear at UF last March, but his visit was canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. Many in the UF community were critical of him being a speaker.”

• Gainesville Sun ($): Local election results for City of Newberry, City of Alachua“According to an online press release, City Commission Seat 4 went to incumbent Shirley Green Brown, who won 455 votes, or 51.3%. According to City Clerk Judy Rice and the Newberry elections webpage, incumbent Mayor Jordan Marlowe ran unopposed and was reelected.”

• News4Jax: Lake City councilman seen cursing at officers in bodycam video calls out police chief. “The video shows Councilman Jake Hill being issued a citation for improperly displaying his license plate. Officers said the plate couldn’t be seen through the dark window. Hill told News4Jax on Thursday he regrets the actions seen on the video, but he doesn’t regret his frustration with the police department after allegations of harassment.”


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Around the state today

• Fort Myers News-Press ($): EPA approval of toxic pesticide aldicarb use in Florida sparks lawsuit“The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s move to allow the use of a previously banned pesticide on citrus in Florida has sparked a lawsuit from environmental and farmworker groups.”

• Associated Press: Florida House moves to limit transgender students in sports“Florida lawmakers moved closer to requiring transgender athletes to undergo testosterone or genetic testing — as well as submit to having their genitalia examined — to participate on sports teams in public schools and colleges.”

• WUSF: Florida Reports Slight Drop In New Coronavirus Cases, But An Increase In Deaths. “The number of new positive daily coronavirus cases in Florida dropped by 10 on Thursday, while the 78 deaths recorded since a day earlier was the most in the last seven days.”

• Inside Climate News/WMFE: DeSantis Recognizes the Threat Posed by Climate Change, but Hasn’t Embraced Reducing Carbon Emissions“Since his election in November 2018, DeSantis is making good on some of his environmental promises, including what he likes to call “resilience,” a new buzzword for climate adaptation. But as the governor prepares for a re-election bid in 2022, and is seen as a potential Republican frontrunner for the presidency in 2024, DeSantis faces criticism for failing to do all he could on Florida’s biggest environmental threat, climate change.”

• Politico: ‘A nicer version of Trump’: GOP donors flock to DeSantis. “As the Republican Party charts its path forward, national donor interest in DeSantis is skyrocketing. Major givers across the country are lining up to support the governor’s 2022 reelection effort, with some committing to hosting fundraising events and others plowing funds into his campaign bank account.”

• WFTS-Tampa: Red tide present at some Sarasota County beaches“Florida Fish and Wildlife says red tide is present at several Sarasota County beaches. According to FWC, the red tide organism, Karenia brevis, was detected at background to medium concentrations in Sarasota County.”

• Associated Press: Florida ‘Anti-Riot’ Bill Goes To Governor Amid Racial Strife. “Supporters say tougher laws are need to deter violent protests, but opponents say it would curtail the right to free speech and to peaceably assemble.”

• Tallahassee Democrat: Florida says school masks optional for fall, Leon schools will not commit“Following a directive Wednesday from the state level that Florida public school districts should not require face masks for the fall semester, schools Superintendent Rocky Hanna said Leon County Schools will ‘not commit to comply with the memo at this time.'”

• Florida Politics: House backs off requiring parental consent for STD education in schools“The House moved forward Tuesday with a bill increasing parental consent regarding a student’s education on sexually transmitted diseases. But the House Education and Employment Committee stripped the strongest language in the bill, which would have required written consent from parents beforehand.”

• WSVN-Miami: Zoo Miami helps discover new spider species in South Florida“Staff members at Zoo Miami have been credited with the discovery of a new spider species in South Florida. The arachnid, called the Pine Rockland Trapdoor Spider, was found in the critically endangered Pine Rockland forest surrounding Zoo Miami.”

• Florida Politics: Civics education bill clears final Senate committee“The Legislature is well on its way to adding a ‘comparative political ideology’ component to civics education for Florida students. Sen. Ana Maria Rodriguez said the coursework would include a comparative study of political ideologies that conflict with the nation’s representative democracy.”


From NPR News

• Science: Embryos That Are Part Monkey, Part Human Raise Ethical Concerns

• World: Blinken Visits Afghanistan After Biden Announces Troop Withdrawal

• National: Testimony Ends Without Derek Chauvin Taking The Stand

• National: Federal Government Is Accused Of Leaving Migrants In Border Towns

• World: U.S. Slaps New Sanctions On Russia Over Cyberattack, Election Meddling

• Business: Economic Boom? Retail Sales Surge, Jobless Claims Hit Pandemic Low

• National: Minn. State Rep. Wants Budget Talks Stopped Until Public Safety Bills Are Passed

• World: India’s Coronavirus Cases Reach Over 200,000 In A Day

About today’s curator

I’m Elise Elder, and I am a digital content producer and reporter at WUFT News. My passion for environmentalism has inspired me to report on 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 eliseelder@ufl.edu.

About Elise Elder

Elise is a reporter for WUFT News who can be reached by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news@wuft.org.

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