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The stories near you
• WUFT News: After Hurricane Ian, sowing hope. “Hurricane Ian trampled over 5 million acres of agricultural land in Florida. The storm ranks among the top storms in U.S. history. For small, family farmers, the recovery is a long season, a brutal winter, fruitless. They face flooding, scattered debris and long-term crop losses.”
• Mainstreet Daily News: Ward returns from D.C., praises opportunities. “Ward joined a contingent of newly elected mayors who met and questioned the Secretaries of Labor, Transportation and Housing and Urban Development along with members of their staff.”
• WCJB: Residents are frustrated after a third development is proposed on HWY 318 in Marion County. “New Times Development, LLC is seeking a zoning change for the Irvine Commerce Center. The roughly 41-acre stretch of land is off HWY 318 near the I-75 interchange.”
• Ocala Gazette: Governor orders special election to fill District 24 House seat vacated by Harding. “The special primary election will take place on March 7, 2023; if necessary, a special election will be held on May 16, 2023.”
• WUFT News: Updated training program brings the heat to Gainesville firefighters. “GFR firefighters train all year and complete live fire training to keep them sharp and efficient in every situation.”
• WUFT News: ‘The red suit picks you’: Santa Clauses prepare for the renewed holiday crush. “Seven-year-old Ranessamae Rinehart could not contain her excitement after sitting on Santa’s lap at the Ocala Town Square gazebo recently. She asked Santa for Legos bricks and sparkly shoes with bows on them.”
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Around the state
• Florida Politics: New medical marijuana rules mean higher application, renewal fees. “New entities wanting to operate in Florida’s lucrative medical marijuana market will be required to submit a $146,000 non-refundable fee to the state and submit an application that will be competitively reviewed by the state under a new emergency rule issued Monday.”
• News Service of Florida: Gov. DeSantis appoints two Florida appellate judges who drew legal challenges. “Moving quickly after a Florida Supreme Court ruling, Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday made appointments to four seats on a revamped 5th District Court of Appeal — including picking two candidates who had drawn a legal challenge.”
• News Service of Florida: Judge poised to hear ‘intellectual freedom’ fight. “Nearly two years after the controversial measure passed, a federal judge next month will consider the constitutionality of a Florida law that requires conducting surveys on state college and university campuses about ‘intellectual freedom and viewpoint diversity’ and includes other changes that opponents argue violate First Amendment rights.”
• Spectrum News: Amoxicillin shortage strains pharmacies, strep patients. “Central Florida healthcare providers told Spectrum News that the supply chain issues and high rates of respiratory infections have left patients empty handed.”
• WUSF-Tampa: A ban on gender-affirming care for kids has yet to take effect. Some say it’s already causing harm. “There are procedural steps two state medical boards have to complete before the rules are finalized. But there have already been reports of disruptions to care, and some transgender youth and their families say the stress is traumatizing.”
• WUSF-Tampa: A report documents challenges to establishing more affordable housing in Florida. “Although fewer people are experiencing homelessness in Florida compared to a decade ago, residents are being exponentially squeezed by housing costs.”
From NPR News
Kristin Moorehead curated today’s edition of The Point.