The Point, Nov. 9, 2021: Here’s what Florida’s elected leaders have planned for next week’s special session


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Today’s top Florida stories

• WFSU: DeSantis calls out Leon County as he announces a deal with Republican legislative leaders ahead of a special session to ban vaccine mandates. “DeSantis, along with Senate President Wilton Simpson and House Speaker Chris Sprowls have rolled out bills that would prevent local governments like Leon from forcing employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19. Private businesses couldn’t issue blanket COVID-19 vaccine mandates without allowing for certain exemptions, like ones for existing medical conditions, religious preferences, and prior infections.”

• Florida Politics: Ron DeSantis officially files for reelection in 2022. “DeSantis enters the field facing three significant Democratic opponents, U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried, and Sen. Annette Taddeo. But he goes into this election in a significantly stronger position than he enjoyed when he first ran for governor in 2018.”

• NBC Miami: Brightline Hits Car in Pompano Beach on 1st Day High-Speed Train Returns. “The reopening of Brightline’s high-speed train service in South Florida after a 20-month shutdown over the COVID-19 pandemic began with a train hitting a car in Pompano Beach Monday morning.”

• WUFT News: You can now check out bird-watching kits at Alachua County libraries. “The kits, which anyone with a library card can check out, include a backpack, a set of binoculars, a guidebook of bird species, and a folder containing information about conservation and bird-watching basics. (Alachua Audubon Society President Debra) Segal said this initially came from an initiative to make environmental education materials more accessible for homeschooled children in Alachua County.”

• Naples Daily News ($): State denies oil drilling permit in Immokalee, Fried calls for end to state permits. “Trend Exploration, based in North Fort Myers, applied to drill a single well about 12,000 feet down — or just more than two miles — to test an upper portion of what is known as the Sunniland Formation for oil. The well would have required a single 300-by-250-foot pad adjacent to wetlands and agricultural lands northwest of the Immokalee Regional Airport.”

• TCPalm ($): Manatee deaths have slowed, but experts are bracing for a deadly winter. Here’s why. “…the sea cows, many still recovering from starvation and malnutrition earlier this year, will soon gather in warm-water areas where the seagrass to eat remains in short supply.”

• WUFT News:  Local event companies are working to bring big-name artists to Gainesville. “The venue was situated in an industrial park near Gainesville Regional Airport. A massive cinder block building shielded the set-up from concertgoers until they entered the gates to face the stage. It was an innovative solution to one of the local music scene’s problems: Few open-air venues for a large population of college students and citizens eager to attend concerts.”

• Gainesville Sun ($): Couple donate $1M toward Harn Museum expansion. “Rebecca Nagy, retired director at the Harn, and Paul Nagy, vice-president of strategic planning and analysis at Hillsborough Community College, donated $1 million toward a new multi-purpose wing that will house a one-of-a-kind Florida-themed art collection.”

• CBS4: Matheson History Museum announces new Executive Director. “The museum said the new Executive Director, Kaitlyn Hof-Mahoney, has previously served at the Museum as a volunteer, curator of collections, and acting administrator.”

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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

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