The Point, May 20, 2021: Done Deal: Florida Legislators Approve Gambling Deal That Could Generate $2.5 Billion For State


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Today’s top Florida stories

• News Service of Florida: Lawmakers Pass Gambling Deal, Court Fight Likely. “Despite concerns that a sports-betting provision might not withstand legal challenges, Florida lawmakers on Wednesday gave final approval to a 30-year deal with the Seminole Tribe that promises to rake $2.5 billion into state coffers over the first five years of the agreement.”

• WUFT News: A Bill Limiting Youth Solitary Confinement In Florida Failed This Year. Here’s What The Practice Entails. “Scientific study has shown that solitary confinement, where a person is placed alone in a cell, has no reformative value. While Florida’s Department of Corrections does not mention or promote reformation in its mission statement, Florida’s department of juvenile justice does, citing ‘prevention,’ ‘intervention’ and ‘treatment’ as a way to ‘turn around the lives of troubled youth.'”

• WFSU: Tallahassee Representative Chosen To Lead State House Democrats. “The Florida House Democratic Caucus has chosen Rep. Ramon Alexander (D-Tallahassee) as its chair for the 2022 and 2024 legislative sessions. In the new role, Alexander will be charged with raising money and recruiting candidates.”

• Florida Politics: As Val Demings looks at Senate run, Aramis Ayala eyes her congressional seat. “Ayala, Orlando’s former State Attorney, put out a video earlier this month indicating she is exploring a campaign for the seat held by Republican U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio. But that was before widespread reports this week that Demings is likely to run in that election.”

• WSVN-Miami: A Dying Breed: South Florida marine life experts investigate rise in manatee deaths. “It’s only May, and already the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission has documented a record-shattering 712 manatee deaths in the state. This time last year, only 252 were found dead.”

• Florida Today ($): Brightline’s Orlando-to-South Florida rail expansion is now more than 50% complete. “Work continues on Brightline’s Orlando-to-West Palm Beach rail extension, including 48 bridges and upgrades at 155 railroad crossings. The project is slated for completion by the end of 2022, company spokesperson Katie Mitzner said.”

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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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