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• WUSF: Gas Prices In Florida Spike To Highest Levels Since 2014. “According to AAA, the average price of gas in the state jumped 12 cents since last week, to $2.97 per gallon. That’s around 6 cents more than the previous high this year, back in March. It’s also the highest price for gas since November 2014.”
• Gainesville Sun ($): McGraw’s school board status in judge’s hands. “McGraw lives in District 4, but ran and was elected in August to the District 2 seat. She filed paperwork with the Supervisor of Elections office saying she lived in District 2, but has said she believed she did live in that district and was not told otherwise by elections officials who reviewed the papers she filed to run for office.”
• WUFT News: The Humane Society Of North Central Florida Holds Grand Opening For Thrift Boutique. “Doors officially opened Friday for the Humane Society of North Central Florida’s Thrift Boutique, offering not only donated high-quality items for pets but the Gainesville community as well.”
• Florida Politics: Kat Cammack labels U.S. universities ‘indoctrination camps.’ “The Gainesville Republican appeared with U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, an Ohio Republican, on Fox & Friends, where the two announced they will co-chair the Congressional Campus Free Speech Caucus.”
• WTSP-Tampa: Mosquitoes may be a year-long problem thanks to climate change, study says. “Scientists with the University of Florida/IFAS found that as Earth’s winters become shorter and warmer, the usually dormant mosquitoes will adapt and become more active. The researchers discovered that the insects were ‘plastic,’ meaning they can tolerate a range of temperatures at different times of the year.”
• Spotlight on Levy County Government: Old Williston Winn Dixie Junk-Filled When Developer Toured It. ‘It was very interesting going through the buildings before we purchased it to see that half the city was inside the building,’ said Matt Crandell, president, CEO, and co-founder of Homestead Tiny House. ‘We’ve been taking that out. There were cars, golf carts, carpet, windows, and refrigerators. It was unbelievable, especially what was Sunshine Drugs. The building was actually filled to the gills. I mean I’ve never seen anything like it.’
• WMFE: Owner Of Malls In Ocala, Melbourne Files For Bankruptcy Protection. “In announcing the bankruptcy filing, Washington Prime Group blames the ‘significant challenges’ created by COVID-19. News reports have chronicled mall lockdowns, stores struggling to pay rent and an increase in online shopping.”
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• News Service of Florida/WFSU: DeSantis Signs Bill Requiring Moments Of Silence In K-12 Schools. “First-period teachers will begin the moment of silence each day and it will last one to two minutes. Teachers won’t be able to tell students what to reflect on during that time. Speaking during a bill signing ceremony at a Jewish Community Center in Miami-Dade County, DeSantis said the new law is meant to protect religious freedom.”
• Associated Press: Vaccinated Visitors To Disney World Can Go Without Masks. “Visitors who are not fully vaccinated will still be asked to wear masks indoors and on all rides and attractions, but Disney says workers won’t require proof of vaccination.”
• NPR News: Tackling ‘Energy Justice’ Requires Better Data. These Researchers Are On It. “For the study, researchers looked at two cities: Tallahassee, Florida, and St. Paul, Minnesota. They combined detailed utility and census data and measured how efficient buildings were in specific neighborhoods.”
• New York Times ($): As Battle Against Virus Wanes, Mayors Confront a New Challenge: Crime. “…cities, like Miami, are nearly free of pandemic restrictions and booming with tourists. This month, the top prosecutor in Miami-Dade County and local police leaders turned to the issue of public safety, announcing Operation Summer Heat, an initiative to combat a wave of shootings. Homicides in Miami are 30 percent higher this year than the same period in 2020, according to data from the medical examiner’s office.”
• Politico: Florida civil rights attorney and legislator Michele Rayner to run for Crist’s seat. “State Rep. Michele Rayner, who became the first openly Black LGBTQ woman to get elected to the Florida Legislature last year, is jumping into the race for the congressional seat now held by Rep. Charlie Crist.”
• Spectrum News: Cough, cough… Yes, red tide is still here. “Thousands of fish lay dead along the shore of Madeira Beach Monday. Instead of the sound of waves, the sound of people coughing and hacking can be heard.”
• St. Augustine Record ($): St. Johns County seeks new community center, library in Hastings. “In 2017, Hastings residents voted to dissolve the town and revoke its charter in the hopes the county’s stewardship would result in lower property taxes, decreased water and wastewater utility rates and increased service levels. The community center project is part of the county’s efforts to invest in Hastings since the dissolution.”
• WJCT: Holiday Season Outdoor Ice Skating Rink Proposed For Downtown Jax’s Riverfront. “There are still plenty of logistical details to figure out, but Downtown Vision CEO Jake Gordon is working with the Downtown Investment Authority and city officials to try to get everything in place for outdoor ice skating on the lawn that replaced the Jacksonville Landing.”
• National: Family Of Alton Sterling Has Accepted $4.5 Million For His Killing By Police
• World: Africa May Be On The Verge Of A Third Wave Of COVID-19 Infections
• Health: After More Than A Year Of Social Distancing, Is It Time To Shake Hands?
• Business: Israel Has Become The 1st Country To Ban The Sale Of Most Fur Clothing
• Politics: A House Panel Will Investigate Trump DOJ Surveillance Of Lawmakers And Journalists
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 email@example.com.