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The Point, July 25, 2022: Today is the deadline to register to vote or change your party affiliation in Florida

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The stories near you

• WUFT News: A Florida law takes effect that requires the state to hit certain cleanup levels of toxic ‘forever chemicals.’ "The use of PFAS, short for perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances that are a possible carcinogen, has spread to a variety of products that touch daily life: non-stick coatings, food products, air particles and foams. Researchers continue to discover new ways that PFAS enter our environment and bodies. HB 1475 and companion bill SB 7012 now legally require the Florida Department of Environmental Protection to set state rules for target cleanup levels of PFAS. Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the bill into law on June 20. It took effect immediately."

• Gainesville Sun ($): The first of two votes that would eliminate exclusionary zoning citywide is set for Aug. 4. "The Gainesville City Commission has set a date for its rescheduled hearing to decide whether to eliminate single-family zoning, a controversial topic that has neighborhoods up in arms about the possibility of duplexes popping up around town. If passed, Gainesville would become the first municipality in Florida to adopt the citywide policy change."

• News Service of Florida: Ocala prayer case is sent back to lower court. "A federal appeals court Friday directed a district judge to reconsider a ruling that said a 2014 prayer vigil backed by the Ocala police chief was unconstitutional. A three-judge panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals cited a U.S. Supreme Court decision last month that supported a Bremerton, Wash., high-school football coach who lost his job after praying on the field following games. The panel said the district judge in the Ocala case should apply a legal standard that the Supreme Court used in the football-coach decision."

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Around the state

• WGCU-Fort Myers: July 25 is the voter registration deadline to vote in Florida’s Aug. 23 primary election. "Registering online at is the quickest way to complete a voter registration. A Florida driver’s license or state ID and social security number are required."

• Politico: Trump and DeSantis fight for the heart of the GOP in Florida. "Ron DeSantis owns Florida — and increasingly the Republican Party. But any presidential ambitions he has will put him on a collision course with Donald Trump. The GOP Florida governor’s win-at-all-costs brand of politics, increasingly embraced by conservatives across the country, was on display this weekend as Florida hosted two GOP conventions that showcased the state’s national importance in the Republican Party and DeSantis’ role in reshaping it."

• Associated Press: Officers describe horror they saw after Parkland shooting. "Law enforcement officers who charged into Parkland’s Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School minutes after Nikolas Cruz fatally shot 17 in one of its buildings described for jurors Friday the horrific scene they encountered."

• WTSP-Tampa: Florida Holocaust Museum, state officials condemn antisemitic presence in Tampa. "The demonstration happened outside a student summit held by the conservative organization Turning Point USA. A spokesperson for the group wrote in part that it '100% condemns those ideologies in the strongest of terms.'"

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Gillum and Lettman-Hicks want their federal corruption trials to be postponed until next year. "Former Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum and his longtime campaign advisor Sharon Lettman-Hicks are asking the federal government to postpone their trials until next year. The two were indicted last month and accused of several campaign finance-related crimes."

• News Service of Florida: Jack Latvala will continue to face ethics allegations of sexual misconduct. "The Florida Commission on Ethics on Friday scrapped a proposed settlement and decided to move forward with a case against former state Sen. Jack Latvala related to allegations of sexual misconduct. Latvala had agreed to a settlement that would have admitted 'poor judgment' in having a two-decade sexual relationship with a lobbyist."

• Associated Press: The importance of being Ernest: An attorney wins a Hemingway contest. "Some came in wool fisherman's sweaters, and other contestants had sportsmen's attire. But it was the cream-colored sweater of attorney Jon Auvil that caught the eye of judges who awarded him the title for most resembling author and former Key West resident Ernest Hemingway."

From NPR News

• National: President Biden's COVID symptoms are improving, his doctor says

• National: As a heat wave blankets much of the U.S., utilities are managing to keep up, for now

• Business: Inflation is crippling rural America and may even drive people to the cities

• Science: Epidemiologists warn the U.S. reaches a critical moment to contain monkeypox

• Health: Monkeypox explained: How to protect yourself and what to watch out for

• World: There are 40% more tigers in the world than previously estimated

• Sports: WWE owner Vince McMahon announces his retirement amid a sex scandal investigation

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

Contact WUFT News by calling 352-392-6397 or emailing news