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The Point, Feb. 1, 2023: Gainesville continues to tackle traffic 'crisis'

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The stories near you

• WUFT News: City of Gainesville holds corridor walks as it declares a traffic ‘crisis’. "According to a document that outlines the city’s project limits, about 86% of the crashes resulted in an injury or fatality."

• WUFT News: The ground of their practice field is too hard for tackling. The Hawthorne Hornets won the state football championship anyway. "An Alachua County Public Schools spokesperson says facilities county-wide will soon be reviewed. Hawthorne Middle/High didn’t wait on upgrades to win."

• WUFT News: Williston businessman sentenced to prison for defrauding federal government. "The CEO of Williston-based Airsign Airship Group was sentenced in federal court Tuesday for defrauding the federal government of about $7.8 million meant to help average Americans during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic."

• Mainstreet Daily News: Gainesville hires first chief climate officer. "(Dan) Zhu works as a city planner in the Department of Sustainable Development and liaison for the Development Review Board. She’ll step into the new role on Feb. 27."

• WUFT News: Florida Department of Transportation continues to increase pedestrian safety on University Avenue. "Construction continues on University Avenue as two new traffic signals have been installed along the busy road as part of new safety plan."

• Ocala Gazette: Local businessman says he was tricked into being a write-in by Chamberlin’s campaign team. "Robert “Foxy” Fox, a Republican whose candidacy effectively closed the March 7 special election for Florida House District 24 to Republican voters only, says he now realizes he was duped by GOP political operatives who led him to believe they represented the republican party but instead are tied to candidate Ryan Chamberlin."

• WUFT News: Alachua County Forever eyes new property in Lochloosa Creek Flatwoods. "After two-and-a-half hours of deliberations on Thursday, the board voted to place the property in a pool to be publicly acquired by Alachua County."

• Gainesville Sun ($): Gainesville looks to launch free menstrual product program in coming weeks. "In October 2022, the Gainesville City Commission unanimously voted to place free menstrual products in all municipal public restrooms as a way to combat rising costs, affordability and access issues."

• WUFT News: Holocaust survivor rocks the Chabad with Klezmer music. "Four days after International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Saul Dreier, founder of the Holocaust Survivor Band on Tuesday made a special visit to Gainesville at the University of Florida’s Chabad and Jewish Student & Community Center."

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Around the state

• Fresh Take Florida: Lawmakers propose making it easier to impose death penalty in Florida. "The changes – which would allow a jury to recommend the death penalty even when only eight of 12 jurors agree – align with plans endorsed by Gov. Ron DeSantis."

• News Service of Florida: DeSantis wants to scrap college diversity programs. "DeSantis’ announcement came weeks after his administration directed leaders of the college and university systems to collect information from schools about diversity, equity and inclusion-related expenditures."

• WLRN-Miami: Four more Moïse assassination defendants are brought from Haiti to face charges in Miami. "The U.S. Attorney’s office in Miami said Solages, Vincent and Rivera are directly charged with conspiring in Florida to commit crimes — including Moïse’s abduction — that led to his brutal murder in Port-au-Prince on July 7, 2021."

• News Service of Florida: Wait times for visas are hurting international tourism in Florida. "While Visit Florida, the state’s tourism-marketing agency, boasts that Florida is the top U.S. destination for overseas travelers based on market share, numbers of international visitors to the state and nation remain far below pre-pandemic totals."

• Florida Politics: Trustees fire Patricia Okker as New College President. "The parting of ways with the administrator comes after significant upheaval on the board. Gov. Ron DeSantis this month appointed six new members to the board and promised to remake the college more like Hillsdale College."

• WMFE-Orlando: College Board will unveil new AP African American Studies framework in Black History Month. "The College Board will roll out a revised version of the course that was already piloted in 60 schools throughout the country, including one in Florida."

• Florida Politics: NOAA pleads for urgency in right whale conservation, lobster gear changes. "The number of deaths caused by fishing gear and vessel strikes far exceed the number allowable for a sustainable population."

From NPR News

• Business: Exxon announced record earnings. It's bound to renew scrutiny of Big Oil

• Politics: Rep. George Santos voluntarily steps down from House committee assignments

• Health: Native Americans left out of 'deaths of despair' research

• Politics: Trump sues Bob Woodward for releasing audio of their interviews without permission

• Health: AbbVie's blockbuster drug Humira finally loses its 20-year, $200 billion monopoly

• Technology: Congress tightens U.S. manufacturing rules after battery technology ends up in China

• Climate: Cleaner, healthier gas burners were developed decades ago. Why aren't they available?

• Culture: The controversy surrounding Andrea Riseborough's Oscar nomination
Kristin Moorehead curated today's edition of The Point.

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