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The Point, Feb. 28, 2023: Gainesville leaders find urgency in dealing with GRU debt

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Today's Florida stories

• Mainstreet Daily News: GNV: All options on table to deal with debt. "The Gainesville City Commission said at a Monday workshop that it’s placing all options on the table to tackle debt at Gainesville Regional Utility (GRU) after demands for action by state lawmakers at a proceeding meeting in Tallahassee last week."

• Associated Press: DeSantis takes over Disney district, punishing company. "Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Monday signed a bill that gives him control of Walt Disney World’s self-governing district, punishing the company over its opposition to the so-called 'Don’t Say Gay' law. The bill requires DeSantis, a Republican, to appoint a five-member board to oversee the government services that the Disney district provides in its sprawling theme park properties in Florida."

• Tampa Bay Times ($): DeSantis’ book is part memoir, part policy paper, part airing of grievances. "In 'The Courage to Be Free: Florida’s Blueprint for America’s Revival,' which is being released publicly Tuesday, Gov. Ron DeSantis depicts himself as a singular figure capable of combating unelected elites in academia, government and media who are hellbent on eroding the country’s foundational values."

• WUFT News: A specialized ambulance for stroke patients is on the way at UF Health. "Strokes are leading causes of long-term disability. These statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are exactly why officials at UF Health Shands Hospital are forming specialized stroke ambulances."

• Associated Press: Judge upholds acquittal in 9 hurricane nursing home deaths. "A Florida judge rejected a prosecutor's impassioned plea Monday, saying he would not reconsider his acquittal of a nursing home administrator in the overheating deaths of nine patients after Hurricane Irma knocked out the facility's air conditioning in 2017."

• NPR News: Why hurricanes feel like they're getting more frequent. "When sequential storms do happen, it's deadly, like when Hurricanes Katrina and Rita hit the Gulf Coast in 2005 or when Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria hit Puerto Rico, Florida and Texas in quick succession in 2017. But by 2100, such consecutive shocks will become relatively commonplace, according to the new analysis (from scientists at Princeton University)."

• WGCU-Fort Myers: Expect 'a summer of slime' on Lake Okeechobee; Caloosahatchee River. "...what is 'usual' has changed in South Florida since Hurricane Ian. Stronger tropical cyclones caused by warming ocean waters due to rising temperatures worldwide are tilting environmental conditions in favor of worsening natural disasters, and that includes harmful algae blooms such as blue-green algae and red tide."

• WFLA-Tampa: Florida man known as ‘Sedition Panda’ arrested for allegedly storming Capitol. "USDOJ said Jesse James Rumson, 37, of Lecanto, Fla., faced charges for multiple felonies, including assaulting, resisting, or impeding officers, obstruction of law enforcement during an official proceeding, and engaging in physical violence."

• WUFT News: Mobile home donated to deter crime in Marion County. "An anonymous donor gifted a mobile home to the Friends of Marion County Parks and Recreation Foundation Inc. They then gave the residence to the county to serve as a home for law enforcement."

• WUFT News: Cycling event raises awareness of sex trafficking. "University of Florida student Caroline Murray is gearing up to bike 1,700 miles this summer to create awareness of sex trafficking. She will be biking along the Pacific coast."

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Ethan Magoc curated today's edition of The Point.

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