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The Point, Sept. 1, 2022: Charlie Crist leaves Congress ahead of general election

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The stories near you

• Gainesville Sun ($): 'Ignorance is expensive.' Alachua County officials pay nearly $16,000 in back taxes, fines. "The fines total nearly $16,000 collectively and backdate several years of claimed homestead exemptions — a property tax break that requires primary residency — by County Commissioner Merihelen Wheeler and former commissioner Mary Alford."

• Florida Storms: Hurricane Andrew changed preparedness forever. "From the way buildings are constructed with hurricanes in mind, to community organization, to emergency communication, Andrew’s legacy was a widespread change in the way Florida prepares for and responds to hurricanes. With its 157 miles-per-hour plus winds and a 17-foot storm surge, Andrew’s well-documented destruction was nothing short of devastating to Miami-Dade County, especially the southern portion where the storm made landfall."

• Mainstreet Daily News: Shands data breach affects 941 patients. "According to a press release sent on Wednesday morning, Shands learned on Aug. 9 that an employee may have inappropriately accessed medical records information outside the scope of their job duties for 941 patients between Aug. 21, 2021, to July 21, 2022. All affected patients have been notified by mail about the incident and the individual involved is no longer employed by Shands, according to the press release."

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Around the state

• News Service of Florida: Charlie Crist has resigned from Congress to focus on his run for Florida Governor. "Crist, a former governor, attorney general, education commissioner and state senator, easily defeated Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried in the Aug. 23 Democratic gubernatorial primary. Republicans criticized Crist’s resignation, which was set to be effective at the end of Wednesday."

• Associated Press: NASA aims for a Saturday launch of the new Artemis moon rocket. "The two-hour launch window is set to open at 2:17 p.m., and if successful, it will be the first capsule to fly to the moon since NASA's Apollo program 50 years ago. The first attempt on Monday was thwarted after a cascade of last-minute problems, including unexplained trouble related to an engine."

• WUSF-Tampa: Fewer than half of Florida 10th-graders passed the state English exam in 2022. "Results from the Florida Standards Assessments in 2022 show that 49 percent of 10th-graders statewide received what the Department of Education calls a 'satisfactory' score of 3 or higher on the ELA test. Fifty-one percent — or about 103,000 Florida high schoolers — did not pass. That's 2 percentage points worse than last year, when 49 percent did not pass."

• WMFE-Orlando: Florida Fish and Wildlife wants your feedback on new protections for imperiled gopher tortoise. "The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is seeking public comment on draft revisions to protections for the gopher tortoise. The revisions come as demand has surged for relocation sites for gopher tortoises displaced by development. The tortoises are listed in Florida as threatened."

• WLRN-Miami: Lawyers say Parkland shooter's troubles started before birth, as jury considers death penalty. "The jury had already heard every detail of what happened on Feb 14, 2018, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, as the prosecution laid out its case. Now they’re hearing about everything that, the defense says, led to the shooting."

• WTSP-Tampa Bay: Archaeologists confirm at least 328 graves from Black cemetery on Clearwater business property. "The St. Matthews Baptist Church Cemetery was established in 1902 and operated through the 1940s. Researchers say the pressures around land development led the church to sell the property for $15,000 in the mid 1950s. Records show a couple of years later, the new owner flipped the land and sold it for $115,000."

• WGCU-Fort Myers: Taste testing helps UF scientists grow better Florida blueberries. "(Dr. Patricio) Muñoz and his team at the University of Florida have been breeding Florida blueberries that not only taste good, but better ward off pests and are more resilient to changing climate conditions, such as heat. More recently, he has been analyzing how aroma impacts the flavor of blueberries."

From NPR News

• Health: FDA authorizes first revamp of COVID vaccines to target omicron

• Health: The U.S. diet is deadly. Here are 7 ideas to get Americans eating healthier

• Health: This Mexican clinic is offering discreet abortions to Americans just over the border

• Politics: Democrat Mary Peltola tops Sarah Palin to win U.S. House special election in Alaska

• National: Jackson residents face long lines and short supply in a frustrating search for water

• National: In filings, Justice Department rebuts Trump's claims on Mar-a-Lago search

• Education: A Texas school board rejects 'In God We Trust' signs in Arabic

• World: Princess Diana showed the world how to use celebrity for good

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 emagoc@wuft.org.

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