The Point, Aug. 19, 2021: More Florida School Boards Decide To Buck State Law On Mask Mandates


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The stories near you

• WUFT News: Alachua County Commissioners Implement One-Week Mask Mandate. “The Alachua County Commission voted on Wednesday to approve a mask mandate for the next seven days, as COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations continue to rise across the region.”

• The Alligator: UF students’ return to Gainesville could lead to rise in COVID-19 cases, local officials say. “UF has stood firm in its position that masks are expected but not mandated on campus. The university instead emphasized encouraging students to get the COVID-19 vaccine — something it does not require either.”

• Mainstreet Daily News: DeSantis fills school board vacancy. “According to a press release from the governor’s office, (Mildred) Russell started Miracle Life Ministries with her husband in 1990. It also said she volunteered at Front Porch Florida and served as a tutor at Duval Early Learning Academy.”

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Around the state

• WLRN: Miami-Dade County Schools To Mandate Masks In Upcoming School Year. “The Miami-Dade County school board voted 7-1 Wednesday evening to adopt a strict masking policy, with only medical exemptions, based on the recommendations of the district’s public health advisors. The board amended an earlier proposal to remove religious exemptions.”

• WUSF: Hillsborough School Board To Require Masks For Next Month. “School board chairwoman Lynn Gray said there are currently more than 10,000 students and school staffers in isolation after being exposed to COVID-19 during the first week and a half of school. She fears that could double by next week.”

• Politico: Red state govs push pricey Covid treatments while fighting masks. “The governors in Florida, Missouri and Texas are promising millions of dollars in antibody treatments for infected people even as they oppose vaccine and mask mandates, saying they can potentially keep people with mild Covid symptoms out of hospitals that are being swamped by new cases. But the treatments and cost of providing them are thousands of dollars more than preventive vaccines, and tricky to administer because they work best early in the course of an infection.”

• News Service of Florida: Florida Tax Revenues Get $2.6 Billion Boost. “Florida lawmakers will have an additional $2.6 billion to play with in general-revenue taxes, along with nearly $6 billion in unspent federal coronavirus stimulus money, as they begin to piece together an election-year budget.”

• Bradenton Herald ($): Treatment makes wastewater at Piney Point cleaner, state says. Discharges could resume. “In a stunning turnaround, the controlled released of wastewater from Piney Point holding ponds into Tampa Bay could resume in coming weeks — but that water will be much cleaner, state officials say.”

• Associated Press: Judge Wants Sale Of Surfside Condo Collapse Property To ‘Benefit All Victims Collectively’ Instead Of Onsite Memorial. “A Miami-Dade County judge would prefer the site of the Surfside condo collapse property to be sold to benefit the families of the victims instead of building a memorial on the site. He said the memorial could be built at a nearby park.”

• Pensacola News Journal ($): ‘Narcissistic waste’: Former Sheriff Morgan spent $75,000 of taxpayer money on statue of himself. “Former Escambia County Sheriff David Morgan spent thousands of public tax dollars to order a life-size bronze statue of himself last year before the end of his final term in office.”

From NPR News

• World: These Female Afghan Politicians Are Risking Everything For Their Homeland

• World: A Defensive Biden Argues There Was No Exit From Afghanistan ‘Without Chaos Ensuing’

• World: Biden’s Handling Of Afghanistan Has Angered Some Allies

• Health: COVID Booster Shots Are Coming. Here’s What You Need To Know

• Health: Why A Push For Boosters Could Make The Pandemic Even Worse

• National: A Texas School Made Masks Part Of Its Dress Code To Get Around Gov. Abbott’s Ban

• Science: Researchers Studying Daddy Longlegs’ Genes Created A ‘Daddy Shortlegs’

• Business: Air Travel Frustrations Rise Amid Chronic Delays And Cancellations

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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