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News from around the region

State stops releasing daily COVID-19 data

The Florida Department of Health has stopped releasing daily data on the number of COVID-19 cases. The state will begin issuing weekly updates instead, which provides less data. The most recently updated daily data regarding COVID-19 cases in Florida was released on June 3 for data recorded ...

DeSantis to pardon COVID-19 violators

In an executive order issued Thursday, Gov. Ron DeSantis announced a 60-day reprieve for all individuals and businesses subjected to criminal charges, fines or penalties relating to local government restrictions connected to the COVID-19 pandemic. The reprieve is a precursor to a full pardon ...

Boating accidents increased statewide in 2020

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) released its 2020 boating accident statistical report which showed a 16% increase statewide in accidents and a 21.5% increase in the number of people who lost their lives in boating accidents. There were 836 boating accidents across ...

Lawsuit filed against Florida’s new election law

The state legislature passed a change to the state's election law which was signed by Gov. Ron DeSantis after party-line votes in the Republican-controlled legislature. Democrats opposed the measures for being part of a wave of legislation being introduced by Republicans in a host of states ...

Valerie’s House providing support in toughest times

Entering Valerie's House on Fowler St. in Fort Myers is a solemn experience. It is also meant to be an uplifting one where children can come to grips with the loss of a family member and connect with others who have similar experiences. The idea for the home was born out of the experience of ...

State legislature passes bill aimed at violent protests

A controversial bill that would make it a third-degree felony to engage in a protest that is declared a riot and was one of the signature pieces of legislation backed by Gov. Ron DeSantis in the current state legislative session, passed the State Senate 23-17 Thursday. The underpinnings of ...

DEP: untreated discharges have ceased at Piney Point Reservoir

More than 200 million gallons of wastewater loaded with high levels of nitrogen and phosphate, emptied into Port Manatee over the past week, at the entrance to Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico due to the failure of the Piney Point Reservoir at a defunct phosphorus plant. In an update issued ...

Collier County Planning Commission approves development in panther habitat

Approximately 1,000 acres of land in eastern Collier County which the Conservancy of Southwest Florida has categorized as 100% prime habitat for the endangered Florida panther, was approved for a large-scale housing project by the Collier County Planning Commission Wednesday in a 5-1 vote ...

COVID-19 cases steadying, variant cases growing in Florida

The number of coronavirus cases documented by the Florida Department of Health rose over a seven-day period to 2,047,379 on data recorded Monday for about a 1.8 % increase over the previous week, when cases rose by a similar rate. On a separate track. the Centers for Disease Control and ...