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The Point, May 15, 2024: Eight dead, at least 40 injured as farmworkers' bus overturns west of Ocala

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The stories near you

• WUFT News: 8 dead, at least 40 injured as farmworkers' bus overturns west of Ocala. "The driver of a pickup truck that crashed into a farmworker bus in Marion County early Tuesday, killing eight, has been arrested on charges of driving under the influence-manslaughter, authorities said."

• WUFT News: Local Latinos facing loss of representation in city government. "'I am the only Hispanic elected person here,' Saco said. 'And they thought it was mind-boggling — because we're in Florida.'"

• Mainstreet Daily News: Alachua County to change investment policy, continues ballot initiative. "The motion comes after public commenters spoke against the Alachua County Board of County Commissioners owning stock in Lockheed Martin."

• Ocala Gazette: Ocala principal arrested on child abuse, false imprisonment charges. "The arrest report states the video shows Prophet 'poking and grabbing' the victim who at one point falls to the ground and Prophet “falls on top of him” and then lifts him back to his chair and puts the victim in a 'choke hold.'"

• Florida Storms: Soggy & stormy Florida: severe, flood risk continues. "Watch for evening storms moving from north to south affecting the I-10 corridor, and then moving over North Florida during the evening."

• WUFT News: 'Kids Adventuring League' cultivates community, nurtures vital skills through Dungeons and Dragons. "The performative nature of the game allows children to try on different identities — something necessary for developing young adults, Paul said."

• Ocala Gazette: Florida Wildlife Commission debuts free fishing course. "Participants will learn about best fishing practices, protecting fish habitat, and marine fisheries management."

• Mainstreet Daily News: Buchholz advances to first baseball state semifinal appearance. "Buchholz will play Bloomingdale (Valrico) in a 6A state semifinal game Thursday at 10 a.m. at Hammond Stadium in Fort Myers."

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Around the state

• Health News Florida: Ascension Florida hospitals are open for business amid ransomware disruption. "The St. Louis-based chain, which operates 140 hospitals in 19 states, on Monday said its electronic records system and MyChart online patient portal remained offline after last week’s cyber breech."

• Associated Press: ‘Cowardly crime’: Brooksville man sentenced to prison for firebombing Planned Parenthood. "Xavier Batten pleaded guilty in January to one felony count of possessing an unregistered destructive device and one misdemeanor count of intentionally damaging a reproductive health services facility."

• News Service of Florida: Florida's ban on Medicaid coverage for transgender treatments goes to appeal. "Lawyers for Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration appealed last June after U.S. District Judge Robert Hinkle found that the prohibition on Medicaid coverage for hormone therapy and puberty blockers violated federal health-care laws and the U.S. Constitution’s Equal Protection Clause."

• WFSU-Tallahassee: CFO Jimmy Patronis is sending a team of insurance fraud investigators to Leon and Gadsden counties. "The strike team will educate the public about the signs of possible fraud. It will also monitor contractors to ensure they follow Florida’s workers’ compensation law while conducting repairs."

• Spectrum News: Red Lobster closes numerous Florida locations, 50+ nationwide. "More than 50 locations are being auctioned off around the country."

• WUSF-Tampa: Lack of regulations for outdoor workers leads to hazardous work environments. "When extreme weather hits Florida, the destruction can be immense. The workers are often left without adequate protection as they deal with toxic mold, dust and other hazardous environments."

• WFSU-Tallahassee: Florida A&M's Terrell Jennings signs a 3-year, $2.83 million deal with the New England Patriots. "The 6-foot-1, 225 pound running back from Duval County, Florida, signed a deal this week to play for the New England Patriots."

• WUWF-Pensacola: Locals capture the Northern Lights. "Floridians were treated to a display of Northern Lights Friday night courtesy of a strong solar storm — the largest since 2003."

From NPR News

• National: Walmart lays off hundreds of employees and requires others to relocate

• Business: Target scales back on its LGBTQ+ merchandise ahead of Pride Month 2024

• Health: Despite state bans, abortions nationwide are up, driven by telehealth

• Race: A Virginia county board votes to restore Confederates' names to schools

• Education: Why children with disabilities are missing school and losing skills

• National: Fallout continues from the Miss USA resignations as a runner-up declines the crown

• Animals: Small but mighty Nimble becomes first mixed-breed dog to win Westminster agility title

Matthew Cupelli curated today's edition of The Point.