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The Point, June 1, 2022: Alachua County Fire Rescue Halts Service on One of its Rescue Units amid Staffing Struggles

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The stories near you

• WCJB TV20: A unit at Alachua County Fire Rescue is being taken out of service due to a lack of firefighters. "The department has relied on mandatory overtime to make up for staffing shortages but now, Rescue Unit 24 is being taken out of service starting Wednesday, June 1st."

• WCJB TV20: Downtown Gainesville business owners, employees face parking problems as officials update fees. "Starting June, free two-hour parking spots will be limited to only 30 minutes. Parking in city lots 3, 4, 5 and 13 will have a four-hour limit at 50 cents an hour. City officials announced a discounted employee rate is in place at the Southwest parking garage but have no word yet on how much the rate will be." 

• Ocala StarBanner: Tropical depression could form in Gulf of Mexico late this week. Florida could feel impact. "According to the Monday night's advisory from the Hurricane Center, the system has a 70% chance of developing over the next five days and a 40% chance over the next two days."

• The Gainesville Sun ($): New Clarence R. Kelly Community Center set to officially open. "For serving 35 years as the director of the Northeast Recreation Center, the center is named after the late Clarence R. Kelly who died at 56 in 2011. The city of Gainesville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs Department announced the $2.3 million construction of the center and its park is near completion. The public is invited to celebrate the opening 3-5 p.m. on June 19 at 1701 NE Eighth Ave. during the city's month-long "Journey to Juneteenth" celebrations."

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Around the state

• WJCT: Many Floridians say they'd ignore hurricane evacuations. "With hurricane season starting Wednesday, more than 4 in 10 Floridians say high gas prices might keep them from evacuating if a storm were bearing down. A survey by the AAA auto club found that 27% of Floridians are more concerned about this year’s hurricane season than last year's. But 29% do not make advanced preparations for hurricane season or severe weather, and 44% have no evacuation plan."

• WESH Orlando: Rep. Val Demings officially files to run for U.S. Senate. "On Tuesday, Rep. Val Demings officially filed to run for U.S. Senate in an effort to unseat Sen. Marco Rubio. The former Orlando police chief announced her candidacy in Tallahassee."

• First Coast News: U.S. Rep. John Rutherford faces ethics committee probe over disclosure of stock trades. "The House ethics committee's leaders announced Tuesday they would open the investigation after receiving a referral from the Office of Congressional Ethics. Rutherford's financial disclosure reports show a purchase of Raytheon Technologies Corp. stock on Feb. 24, the same day Russia invaded Ukraine. Raytheon is the major defense contractor manufacturing the missiles Ukraine has used to defend itself from Russia's attacks by air. Rutherford says his IRA manager purchased the stock. Rutherford serves on the bipartisan, 10-member House Committee on Ethics; thus the committee is reviewing one of its own members." 

• FOX35 Orlando: UCF football stadium gets a new name in $19.5 million deal. "On Tuesday, the UCF Board of Trustees approved a naming rights deal with the UCF Athletics Association and FBC Mortgage to rename the stadium 'FBC Mortgage Stadium.' The 10-year, $19.5 million deal reportedly goes into effect on July 1."

• Florida Keys: U.S. Coast Guard returns 223 migrants back to Haiti, Cuba. Some stopped off Florida Keys. "The U.S. Coast Guard returned the U.S.-bound migrants back to Haiti and Cuba on Tuesday after detaining eight migrant boats at sea during the Memorial Day weekend. The worrying surge of Haitians and Cubans trying to get to the U.S. is expected to be discussed next week when hemispheric leaders meet in Los Angeles on June 6 during the Summit of the Americas." 

From NPR News

• National: The National Spelling Bee returns to its usual venue for the first time in 3 years

• Technology: Supreme Court blocks Texas social media law from taking effect

• Business: DeLorean is back (to the future) with an electric car, and some caveats

• Music News: K-Pop stars BTS went to the White House to talk about anti-Asian hate crimes

About today's curator

I'm Fareeha Haque Abrar, a journalist at WUFT. Originally from North Carolina, I grew up reading Florida stories since moving to Jacksonville at 4 years old. I am a senior journalism major and am a part of a team searching for local and state news each week that's important to you. Please send me feedback about today's edition of The Point or ideas for stories we may have missed.

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