The Point, May 16, 2022: Gainesville pro-choice rally was among the hundreds held nationwide this weekend

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The stories near you

• WUFT News: Hundreds of pro-abortion rights demonstrators march in Gainesville ‘Bans Off Our Bodies’ rally. “Their voices crescendoed as they marched down University Avenue in droves from Bo Diddley Plaza to the Cora P. Roberson Park Saturday morning, demanding and defending the right to an abortion. Cars accompanied their shouts, honking as they sped by, and passengers cheered out the windows.”

• Gainesville Sun ($): Gainesville Police Department uses ‘Interrupters’ program to prevent gun violence. “Interrupters are trained to prevent shooting incidents by targeting and counseling members of the community most vulnerable to violence. They work from a public health perspective, following a model from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

• The Alligator: Professors fear new tenured law will hurt Florida’s quality of education. “Tenured professors, who have been granted permanent employment at their university, cannot be fired without cause until they decide to leave on their own accord. Hessy Fernandez, UF’s director of strategic communications, wrote in an email the law does not affect what defines tenure and does not create a cemented system for post-tenure review. Rather, it suggests the Board of Governors may develop regulation regarding post-tenure review should they wish, she wrote.”

• Florida Politics: UF ranks first among public universities in tech transfer for economic return. “The University of Florida ranked first among public universities and second nationwide in a new report that evaluates how effective universities bring discoveries into the economy.”

• Ocala Gazette: Septic-to-sewer conversion program approved by Marion County Commission. “Benefits to connecting, according to the county, include reduction of contamination to the aquifer and waterways, elimination of septic tank maintenance for the homeowner, as well as quality installation by Marion County approved contractors.”

• WUFT News: Volunteers help release near Paynes Prairie two bald eagles who fell and were then rehabilitated. “Although neither was injured, they both fell out of their nests at a young age trying to fly and weren’t strong enough to care for themselves. One bald eagle named Feisty Mike was found in late March near the Paynes Prairie Visitor Center. The other, unnamed, was found on the east side of Newnans Lake in late April. Both were then taken to the University of Florida College of Veterinary Medicine and then transferred to the Audubon Center for Birds of Prey in Maitland.”

• Ocala Star-Banner ($): ‘Old school and down to earth’: The Marion County Airport, near Dunnellon, is having a moment. “The airport, commonly known among pilots as X-35, which is its FAA designation, has become a haven for private and sport aviation activities. The 800-acre facility dates back to World War II and has two lighted runways, measuring 5,000 and 4,702 feet.”

• Atrium Magazine: “Preserving something for posterity.” “Carl Van Ness can answer almost any question about the University of Florida on command. And if he can’t, he knows where to find the answer. He’s been affectionately decreed ‘a walking UF encyclopedia’ and the ‘Tom Brady of all archivists’ by his colleagues. Appropriate nicknames, perhaps, for a man who has a knack for the stacks of the UF archives. He has soaked up as much history as one man could over four decades at Smathers Library, and he has the stories to prove it.”


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Around the state

• Politico: DeSantis appeals Florida judge’s order blocking his redistricting map. “The administration of Gov. Ron DeSantis has appealed a state judge’s order blocking the Republican governor’s congressional redistricting map, the latest move in the long-running fight over redistricting in the state.”

• News Service of Florida: DeSantis taps lawmaker Byrd as Secretary of State. “State Rep. Cord Byrd, a Neptune Beach Republican who has been at the forefront of controversial legislation supported by Gov. Ron DeSantis, will oversee the 2022 elections in Florida.”

• Palm Beach Post ($): How FPL’s new $1.2 million fixed-wing hurricane drone will work and what it will do. “The newest tool in Florida Power & Light’s storm-ready kit has a wingspan slightly longer than a Cessna, can fly 1,000 miles at a time and cost the utility’s customers a cool $1.2 million. This fixed-wing drone, called FPLAir One, will be used to survey storm damage across Florida, which the utility hopes will streamline restoration efforts to get power back on after an outage sooner.”

• WJCT-Jacksonville: Security heightened at Jacksonville abortion clinic. “Since 2016, the number of police calls alleging harassment and violence from protesters at Florida abortion clinics has nearly doubled. Kelly Flynn, owner of A Woman’s Choice, says she fears the already-heated clashes will get worse.”

• WFLA-Tampa: Property insurance fraud: Why are there so few convictions in Florida? “The state received more than 1,700 tips or reports of property insurance fraud last year. In the end, just 14 people were convicted, according to data from the Florida Department of Financial Services. Some lawmakers are now asking if Florida is doing enough to deter the crime.”

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Florida strives to uncover lost history, hidden away in forgotten graveyards. “Much of Florida’s history is literally underfoot. Now there is now a major effort to find and preserve the state’s many lost cemeteries where that history resides.”

• Tampa Bay Times ($): Lightning-Panthers: It’s time for the Sunshine State Series, Round 2. “The cross-state rivals will meet again in the postseason after a tight six-game series in the first round last year.”


From NPR News

• Politics: Reproductive rights supporters rally across the country

• Politics: McConnell says the Senate will pass the largest Ukraine aid package yet on Wednesday

• World: Finland and Sweden announce they want to join NATO, marking a big blow to Putin

• Race: What is the ‘Great Replacement’ and how is it tied to the Buffalo shooting suspect?

• Health: This is how many lives could have been saved with COVID vaccinations in each state

• Health: A landmark study tracks the lasting effect of having an abortion — or being denied one

• National: California just ran on 100% renewable energy, but fossil fuels aren’t fading away yet

• Business: What’s behind the baby formula shortage in the U.S?

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.

About WUFT News

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

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