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WGCU News

  • We are all connected by the environment we share. The Earth is our home. This is the space where we share the environmental stories that caught our attention this week, in Florida and beyond.
  • Watch a manatee give birth, courtesy Mote Marine Laboratory and Aquarium
  • Early on during the COVID- 19 pandemic, places like Immokalee went for weeks with little to no testing. Then, as the vaccine rolled out, few from Immokalee could secure a place in line. But there are other factors that contributed to the disparity in the number of cases and numbers of deaths. WGCU's Michelle Alvarez reports.
  • State health officials reported 6,772 new COVID-19 cases and 44 deaths, Wednesday. So far more than 7.5 million people in Florida have been vaccinated including more than 2.9 million people who have received a first dose and more than 4.6 million who have completed the series.Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran sent a letter to school district officials, Wednesday, advising that mask wearing for students will be optional this fall.School districts in Southwest Florida are planning to scale back their virtual learning options for the 2021-2022 school year. Area school districts are also reporting a surge in new infections after students returned from spring break.Due to reports of rare blood clots, Florida has paused distribution of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Gov. Ron DeSantis says despite the pause, Florida’s vaccine supply is still strong. The state’s effort to vaccinate people in prison is also not affected by the pause.Florida Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried is calling on Gov. DeSantis to loosen vaccine residency restrictions in an effort to get more undocumented farmworkers vaccinated.
  • On Tuesday April 13, the Collier County Board of Commissioners voted to join the Southwest Florida Regional Resiliency Compact, joining 13 other municipalities in Southwest Florida to increase climate resiliency.
  • The Collier County Planning Commission is meeting at 9am Thursday about Bellmar Village, a planned development in Eastern Collier County.
  • State health officials reported 1,613 new COVID-19 cases and 35 deaths on Monday. So far, more than 7.2 million people in Florida have been vaccinated including more than 2.8 million who have received a first dose and more than 4.4 million people who have completed the series.Governor Ron DeSantis is railing against YouTube and Google and accusing the tech giant of censorship for removing a video of a COVID-19 discussion he had with scientists who oppose government lockdowns, school closures and mask wearing.Florida is suing the Biden administration and the CDC to let cruise ships sail again after being shut down for more than a year during the COVID-19 pandemic.The Florida Education Association is seeking clarity on recently adopted exemptions to testing requirements for this school year.Public school districts in Southwest Florida plan to scale back their distance learning options for students returning to school in the fall.A bill to make pandemic-induced expansions on the use of telemedicine permanent continues advancing in the state legislature.FEMA is now offering financial assistance to help cover the cost of funerals for those who have died of COVID-19.Lee County Commissioners stopped manning toll booths to collect bridge tolls on the outset of the pandemic and now they’re considering making that change permanent. They’re also considering a proposed increase in bridge tolls paid by motorists.A Florida woman was sentenced to 30 days in jail, last week, for deliberately coughing on a cancer patient during a dispute, last year, that was caught on a video that went viral.
  • Ramadan, the holy month for Muslims, starts Tuesday. Here how one local woman is preparing.
  • We are all connected by the environment we share. The Earth is our home. This is the space where we share the environmental stories that caught our attention this week, in Florida and beyond.
  • Volunteer tasting panels have long been relied upon to guide decisions on which strawberries taste and smell best, and therefore should be bred for Florida's $300 billion crop.