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The Point, Aug. 3, 2021: Gainesville Commissioners To Discuss Suing State Over 'Anti-Riot' Law

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Today's top Florida stories

• WUFT News: Gainesville Might Become First Florida City To Sue Governor, State Attorney Over ‘Anti-Riot’ Law. "(Gov. Ron) DeSantis signed 'The Combating Violence, Disorder, and Looting and Law Enforcement Protection Act' into law on April 19, calling it the 'strongest anti-rioting, pro-law enforcement piece of legislation in the country.' Critics say it targets Black Americans and protesters who streamed into Florida’s streets following the murder of George Floyd and the killing of Breonna Taylor. The first of multiple lawsuits over the law was filed within days, but Gainesville would be the first city to sue."

• CBS4: City and County commissioners could make vaccines mandatory for employees. "Alachua County and Gainesville City Commissioners will discuss this week the possibility of mandating all employees to get vaccinated."

• WCJB: Alachua County Public Schools will require teachers, vendors, and visitors to wear masks. "Alachua County Public schools announced teachers, vendors, and visitors will have to wear masks when school starts back next week, however, the final COVID-19 protocols for children are not finalized."

• Mainstreet Daily News: State, local officials want more COVID-19 data. "Residents, policy makers and media in Alachua County who once had access to daily COVID-19 data broken down by county and zip codes are now given access to state data on a weekly basis as Florida has become the pandemic epicenter."

• Florida Storms: Stormy Week Ahead After a Steamy Weekend in Florida. "Florida is about to see some relief from the excessive heat that was over a large part of the state this past weekend, but it will come at a price. ... Rainfall amounts are forecast to average between 2 and 5 inches over a large area this week."

• The Alligator: Following Up: Checking in on anti-racism initiatives in Gainesville. "A year ago, the murder of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement reverberated around the world. The Gainesville community, including UF’s campus, followed suit. Petitions, social media campaigns and demonstrations called for attention to racial equality within local law enforcement and university campuses. Now, The Alligator is checking in on how much progress has been made."

• WFLA-Tampa: Florida vaccinations tick up as delta variant surges, as nearly 250K got shot last week. "As the Delta variant spreads, some Floridians are having a change of heart about the COVID-19 vaccine. According to the latest data, nearly 250,000 Floridians got a COVID-19 shot last week. State health officials say we haven’t seen numbers that high in many weeks."

• CBS Miami: Demand For Testing At An All-Time High As Delta Variant Surges. "The line at Mills Pond Park in Ft. Lauderdale stretched nearly twice around the testing site on Monday, reminiscent of the picture a year ago when the virus ran rampant."

• Tampa Bay Times ($): Florida leads the nation in kids hospitalized for COVID. "The Florida Department of Health reported 10,785 new COVID-19 infections among children under 12 between July 23 and 29. That’s an average of 1,540 new cases per day. The surge is worse for children who are eligible for the vaccine — 11,048 new cases among those ages 12 to 19 in the same week."

• Fort Myers News-Press ($): No more honor system: Florida ag commissioner promises inspections, reports to help clean up water. "Knowing what, exactly, is going into the water from fields and pastures is an important tool for scientists and policymakers trying to clean that water up, (Agriculture Commissioner Nikki) Fried said."

• WTSP: Scientists using dead fish as fertilizer to study red tide. "Scientists are looking at ways municipalities can remove the fish at a low cost. After the dead fish are removed from the water, scientists are researching how they can be reused."

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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 emagoc@wuft.org.

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news @wuft.org