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Today’s Florida stories
• WUSF-Tampa: DeSantis announces a new Florida State Guard and the retired Marine who will lead it. “Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday announced the reestablishment of the Florida State Guard. Speaking in Madeira Beach, DeSantis said Florida joins 22 other states and territories with state-level defense forces. He said the guard will be able to more quickly help residents in times of disaster.”
• WUFT News: Planning commission recommends approval of Meadowbrook Golf Course driving range, despite neighbors’ objections. “The course has been closed since July 2021, when severe flooding from Tropical Storm Elsa inundated the area near Northwest 39th Avenue and Northwest 93rd Street. The course’s owner, Chris Marcum, sees the construction of the range as the means by which the course can withstand weather events and turn a year-round profit.”
• Florida Politics: Rural broadband tough and expensive, but possible, says Brad Swanson. “Getting that last mile in broadband internet connectivity for Floridians isn’t an easy nor inexpensive task, but the opportunities have never been better according to Brad Swanson, President and CEO of Florida Internet & Television.”
• Politico: Ron DeSantis attempts to take over the GOP-led Florida Senate. “It’s a continuation of DeSantis’ one-sided relationship with the Florida Legislature, which has bowed to his demands to pass laws to punish Disney Corp. and redo congressional redistricting to create maps more advantageous to Republicans. DeSantis’ influence among state lawmakers has grown as his stock rises with national Republicans, and he is considered among a top tier candidate to run for president in 2024.”
• News4Jax: Columbia County K9 dies of ‘heat-related injury.’ “The Sheriff’s Office said Drago and his handler were on the training exercise Tuesday when Drago suffered a ‘heat-related injury’ and was immediately taken to a vet for treatment. The Sheriff’s Office did not specify what the heat-related injury was or how it occurred.”
• WMFE-Orlando: Disney delays moving thousands of jobs from California to Florida. “The 2,000 jobs were supposed to be moved from California to Orlando by 2022. But now the earliest expected opening date for the Lake Nona campus is 2026. The three-year delay comes amid Disney’s public confrontation with Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis over the Parental Rights in Education or so-called ‘Don’t Say Gay’ law.”
• Associated Press: Florida’s new abortion law violates religious freedom, a synagogue’s lawsuit says. “The lawsuit filed by the Congregation L’Dor Va-Dor of Boynton Beach contends the law that takes effect July 1 violates Jewish teachings, which state abortion ‘is required if necessary to protect the health, mental or physical well-being of the woman’ and for other reasons.”
• WFSU-Tallahassee: North Florida utility customers could be on the hook for rising fuel prices at power plants. “The Florida Public Utilities Company filed a proposal Tuesday at the state Public Service Commission, seeking to pass along additional costs to customers. … Utilities generally are allowed to pass along fuel costs to customers, but are not supposed to profit from those charges.”
• Gainesville Sun ($): Staffing levels up as Gainesville restaurant industry continues to recover from pandemic. “Alachua County had a record-high 8.8% overall unemployment rate in April 2020. Two years later, in April 2022, that number has plummeted to 2.1%.”
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org.