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The Point, March 11, 2024: County begins repaving Northwest 23rd Avenue

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The stories near you

• WUFT News: Alachua County to begin repaving worst section of Northwest 23rd Avenue. "The majority of the work will be done at night, he said. Noise may be a concern for locals, but the alternative would be major disruption to traffic flow during the day."

• Fresh Take Florida: Florida death row inmate once bound by promise to slain teen's mom, asks for new sentence. "A Florida inmate on death row for the murder of a 13-year-old Panama City girl is asking for a new sentence, after accepting the death penalty and forgoing a trial by jury as a promise to the victim’s now deceased mother."

• Mainstreet Daily News: Clemons questions potty parity at Gainesville City Hall. "State Rep. Chuck Clemons, R-Newberry, questioned this week whether Gainesville’s gender-neutral restrooms at City Hall violate state law, and he’s asked for an advisory opinion from the Florida Building Commission on the issue."

• Florida Storms: Heading to the beach this spring break? Local officials have a message for you. "As spring break approaches and travelers make their way to the Sunshine State’s beach towns, local authorities and lifeguards want you and your family to prioritize safety when soaking up the sun."

• Mainstreet Daily News: ACPS releases details for Newberry charter school vote. "Newberry Elementary School, Oak View Middle School and Newberry High School will all hold voting during the same week."

• Gainesville Sun ($): City of Gainesville to require GRU to obtain permits for use of public right-of-ways. "Gainesville city commissioners voted unanimously Thursday to begin requiring Gainesville Regional Utilities to obtain permits before working in a public right-of-way, a change from the existing ordinance that allows GRU unrestricted access to right-of-ways."

• WUFT News: Gainesville author speaks on disability, queerness and activism in a changing world. "Sandra Gail Lambert is a prominent author living in Gainesville who has written fiction, a memoir and many personal essays about her experience as a disabled lesbian activist."

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Around the state

• Florida Trident: ‘This is Torture:’ State of healthcare in U.S. prisons leads to brutal inmate deaths. "In fact, 2019 saw the highest number of homicides ever recorded by the bureau, and prisoners were nearly three times more likely to die by homicide than other U.S. residents."

• WUSF-Tampa: How a nationwide cyberattack is impacting Florida patients and hospitals. "On Feb. 21, Change Healthcare, owned by insurance giant UnitedHealth Group, said it suffered a cyberattack. The company is an important part of the U.S. health care system, processing billions of transactions annually and matching up bills with insurance coverage."

• Politico: Why an influential green group sued its ex-scientist. "A prominent conservation group’s messy legal fight against its former scientist is dividing one of the nation’s most successful environmental alliances."

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Florida's Baker and Marchmann Acts are set for the biggest overhaul in years. "The Marchmann and Baker Acts set out the process for involuntary commitment of people dealing with either mental health problems or substance abuse. But the processes have long been confusing, and even worse for some children—traumatic."

• News Service of Florida: Here are 10 big issues the Florida Legislature addressed in its 2024 session. "The 2024 legislative session ended Friday with an annual hanky-drop ceremony in the rotunda between the House and Senate chambers. Here are snapshots of 10 big issues from the session."

• Health News Florida: Orlando Health reports 4 measles cases in Orange County involving out-of-state residents. "State officials say there is no outbreak in the region. The cases were made public days after the Florida Department of Health reported its 10th case since mid-February."

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Protesters are calling on Gov. DeSantis to veto proposed vaping regulations. "The legislation would prohibit stores from selling flavored e-cigarettes, instead they would be allowed to sell from a list of 23 different tobacco-flavored vaping devices that have been approved for marketing by the Food and Drug Administration."

• WUSF-Tampa: Seagrasses in the Gulf of Mexico could be overgrazed by migrating herbivores due to warming waters. "Manatees and sea turtles are most commonly known to graze on turtle grass in the Gulf of Mexico, but Frazer said warming water will expand the grazing areas for herbivores that don't typically come here, like tropical parrot fish. The phenomenon is known as tropicalization."

From NPR News

• National: Immigrants are less likely to commit crimes than U.S.-born Americans, studies find

• Politics: Biden signs spending package that averts a government shutdown

• National: Pentagon finds 'no evidence' of alien technology in new UFO report

• Health: How did the world run so low on cholera vaccine? As outbreaks grow, stockpile runs dry

• National: Boeing says it can't find documents on the door plug that blew off mid-air

• National: That spare change you donate at checkout is adding up to millions for charities

• Culture: Why 'Dragon Ball' creator Akira Toriyama was so important to the world of anime

Kristin Moorehead curated today's edition of The Point.