The Point, May 3, 2021: Florida Budget Bounces Back From Pandemic Expectations, Grows 10% From Prior Year


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• WUFT News: Gainesville Food Truck Park Could Serve Alcohol By Fall. “Just two days after the Midpoint Park and Eatery food truck park opened in March, Rep. Chuck Clemons proposed a bill that would allow the vendors to apply for quota licenses, which allow the sale of alcoholic beverages, wine and beer as well as spirits and liquor.”

• WUFT News: Gainesville’s Guaranteed Income Payments Could Be Sent By October. “(Gainesville Mayor Lauren) Poe said he plans to focus these efforts on those that have re-entered society after incarceration with monthly payments of $600 for 24 months.”

• WUFT News: As Nationwide Ammunition Shortage Continues, North Florida Gun Owners Feel the Effects. “Ammunition shortages are not uncommon. They occur roughly every four years with presidential elections, as gun owners grow weary of new firearm legislation and talks of gun control. This year’s shortages, however, have reached new levels. The coronavirus forced manufacturers to operate at limited capacity, leaving a small supply to satisfy demand that resulted from concerns related to political changes, civil unrest and an unprecedented global pandemic.”

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Around the state today

• Florida Politics: Lawmakers pass $101.5 billion budget, boosted by federal recovery funds. “The $101.5 billion tab for the 2021-22 fiscal year, which begins in July, is $9.3 billion larger than the current year’s $92.2 billion budget. That amounts to a more than 10% increase — ‘a lot,’ lead House budget negotiator Jay Trumbull told members Thursday.”

• USA Today Network ($): It’s over. Who won? Who lost? A look back at the 2021 Florida legislative session. “Here’s a look at the winners and losers of the 2021 session, with the usual caveat: The ultimate winners are the ones who escape the governor’s veto pen in the weeks ahead.”

• WGCU: Governor DeSantis signs “Right to Farm” Bill. “The new law prohibits so-called nuisance lawsuits filed by people who do not own property within one-half mile of the alleged violations. Critics argue that the bill would limit lawsuits over the potential health impacts from things like burning sugar cane.”

• Florida Today ($): Florida bill expanding school choice vouchers reaches governor’s desk. “A bill expanding school choice vouchers that could allow tens of thousands of students to use taxpayer dollars to attend private schools has reached the desk of Gov. Ron DeSantis.”

• Fresh Take Florida: Florida Governor Proposed Protecting College Students’ Right To Party. What Happened? “When he proposed it, the governor generated headlines across Florida. Since then, nothing. By Friday, the final day of the legislative session, no such bill had emerged. Despite the governor’s remarks, college students across Florida have been punished for failing to comply with health rules.”

• NPR News: Can A Teacher Fly A Black Lives Matter Flag At School? A Florida Court Will Consider. “This March, Jacksonville’s public school district told (Amy) Donofrio to take the flag down, saying it violated district policy on political speech by employees. Donofrio said no. So she was taken out of the classroom and reassigned to non-teaching duties. Donofrio is now represented by the Southern Poverty Law Center in a lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida. The suit alleges the flag’s removal was a violation of her First Amendment rights.”

• News Service of Florida: Florida’s First Black Supreme Court Justice Dies At 88. “Joseph Hatchett, whose groundbreaking career included becoming the first Black justice on the Florida Supreme Court, died Friday at age 88, the Supreme Court announced Saturday.”

• Miami Herald ($): ‘Insane and dangerous’: Inside the Miami school that told teachers not to get vaccinated. “Long before Miami’s Centner Academy ignited a national uproar by telling teachers not to get COVID-19 vaccinations, contrary to all credible scientific advice, the school’s husband-and-wife founders were determined to do things exactly as they pleased, for better or worse.”

From NPR News

• Health: COVID ‘Doesn’t Discriminate By Age’: Serious Cases On The Rise In Younger Adults

• Health: Pediatricians Weigh In On What’s Safe And Not Safe For Unvaccinated Children

• Health: U.S. Vaccinations May Be Reaching A Tipping Point To Stop The Virus, Experts Say

• National: 4 Astronauts Splash Down In SpaceX Dragon Capsule After 6 Months In Orbit

• World: U.S. Will Impose New Ban On Travel From India As Coronavirus Rages

• World: Portugal Opens World’s Longest Pedestrian Suspension Bridge, And It’s A Trip

• Business: Flush With Cash, Americans Are Buying Everything From iPhones To Teslas

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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