Subscribe to The Point, arriving in your inbox Monday through Friday at 8 a.m.
The stories near you
• Gainesville Sun ($): Real estate broker involved in SWAT raid sues the City of Gainesville in federal court. “Though not named in the warrant, Hurst was held at gunpoint, frisked, and had his hands bound with zip ties for about 15 minutes before being detained for nearly two hours as officers cleaned out electronic equipment and other items in the office.”
• WUFT News: Experts stress cold weather safety ahead of a frigid holiday weekend. “The Panhandle and North Florida are expected to see the coldest temperatures, with lows falling below freezing and staying frigid through the holiday weekend.”
• Ocala Gazette: School board rejects sheriff’s proposal to take over safe school department. “The department, led by Dennis McFatten, falls under the jurisdiction of the superintendent and oversees the communication between schools and law enforcement and implements security measures and emergency preparedness, according to MCPS.”
• Ocala Gazette: County commissioners reject or postpone three controversial developments. “The Marion County Board of County Commissioners vetoed one proposed development on County Road 318 in the Farmland Preservation Area and a sand mine project in Orange Springs, while postponing a third project during a standing-room only Dec. 20 board meeting.”
•Gainesville Sun ($): Alachua County officials give city officials hard deadline to sell communications system. “Nearly a year ago, the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners sent a letter to the Gainesville City Commission asking to purchase the city’s trunked radio system, which is a public safety radio system used mostly by emergency services and smaller municipalities throughout the county.”
• Ocala Gazette: Marion County Sheriff’s office application of Marsy’s Law. “Over the past few years, most Marion County Sheriff deputies involved in a use of force incident have asked for their identities to be protected, as victims deserving protection under a 2018 constitutional amendment designed to bolster crime victims’ rights called Marsy’s Law.”
• WUFT News: Large-scale alligator farming affects Florida tanneries and small businesses. “Alligator farming has also played a role in conservation efforts for the species. Because most farms harvest eggs from the wild, it is in their interests as well to invest in long-term preservation.”
Today’s sponsored message
Visit lawyergainesville.com or call 352-373-3334 today to learn more.
Around the state
• WFLA-Tampa: DeSantis appoints removed judge who ruled against teen getting abortion over ‘bad grades’ to new court. “(Jared) Smith served previously as a judge in the Thirteenth Judicial Circuit, a spot he was appointed to in 2019 by DeSantis. The judge made headlines earlier in the year for a ruling on a Tampa area teenager’s request for an abortion without parental consent.”
• Florida Politics: Questions swirl around state tech program; did it lead to agency head ouster? “A newly released report from Florida TaxWatch says there should be more ‘scrutiny’ over the still-unfinished software system designed to help manage a Medicaid waiver program used to provide home and community-based services to people with disabilities.”
• WCJB: State legislation filed at the Capitol seeks to make school-board races partisan. “School-board races are required to be non-partisan under the state constitution. State Representative Spencer Roach’s bill would change that; allowing candidates to run with party affiliations starting in 2026.”
• WFTS-Tampa Bay: Full Circle: Battered and bruised by extreme weather, the race is on to make Florida more resilient. “Hurricanes like Ian and Nicole are storms Floridians have faced for generations. But, scientists tell us they are one problem in a growing list of climate-related issues communities must prepare for before it is too late.”
• Tallahassee Democrat ($): Florida plagued by affordable housing shortage. Could fading shopping malls be an answer? “Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, is endorsing legislation this spring that would build on a two-year-old state law making it easier to convert vacant retail space into housing that working Floridians could afford.”
• WFTS-Tampa Bay: State attorney drops charge against former Buccaneers receiver Antonio Brown. “Brown had been wanted by Tampa Police after he was accused of misdemeanor domestic violence in early December.”
• TCPalm ($): What does it mean to be woke? Local NAACP leaders talk about the word’s politicization. “From its 1923 origins in the Black community to today’s co-optation for various political agendas, the definition of the word has evolved and come to mean different things to different people.”
From NPR News
Kristin Moorehead curated today’s edition of The Point.