The Point, May 18, 2020: Special Report: What Leaky Septic Tanks Are Doing To Florida’s Environment

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• A WUFT News special report: Florida’s climate preparation has largely focused on the built and natural environment. Our semester-long study of climate change and public health found that human threats – from heat-induced hospitalizations to disease-carrying insects – are increasing in Florida. Children, elders, low-income Floridians and other vulnerable populations are particularly vulnerable to these risks, which are now compounded by the coronavirus as basic programs are suspended to address the emergency. But possibly record-breaking heat, stronger hurricanes, and other human health threats have not quarantined the news.

Our four-part series continues today with a look at septic tanks, millions of which are buried under Florida’s sandy soil. Long known to pollute the state’s waters, leaky tanks can also pose human health problems. It is uncertain whether they can spread COVID-19.

• WMFE: Florida will enter “Full Phase 1” of Governor Ron DeSantis’ recovery plan starting Monday. “DeSantis says restaurants and retail stores will be 50 percent indoor and that gyms and other recreational facilities will be open Monday.”

• WLRN: UF Researcher Says Florida’s Contact Tracing Policy Is Unclear. “A University of Florida researcher who specializes in disease modeling has some questions about the state’s contact tracing process.”

• FL Keys News: Florida Keys are slated to reopen to visitors on June 1, district leaders say. The hotels will reopen and the checkpoints will be closed. “This depends on the state of the novel coronavirus in the Keys, county spokeswoman Kristen Livengood said in a press release posted around 7:30 pm. As of Sunday, the Keys had 100 confirmed positive cases of COVID-19, three deaths and 12 hospitalizations. “

• Florida Times-Union: Seven deaths in Clay County nursing home. “… Governors Creek Health and Rehabilitation has added two more deaths since the May 8 report that listed five. The total death toll of seven is the highest in the Jacksonville metropolitan area. “

• Tampa Bay Times: State seeks new death sentences as Florida Supreme Court withdraws unanimous juries. “It all happened because of a case called Hurst. It was a Florida case that made it to the US Supreme Court, which put down the state’s death penalty law in 2016. The Hurst decision was later interpreted as meaning that the juries must be unanimous if they are to recommend the death penalty. Previously, Florida only required a slim majority of 7-5. “

• Bay News 9: Disney World, Union Reaches Security Protection Agreement for Return to Work. “Safety precautions include mandatory masks for employees and visitors, mandatory temperature checks and social distancing practices, according to a statement from the Service Trades Council Union, which represents more than 40,000 employees at Disney World.”

• Gainesville Sun: Some are pushing for a break in school property purchases. “With the Alachua County School Board narrowly agreeing to buy a property in Jonesville for more than $ 3 million last week, some members of the public are hoping to suspend the deal.”

WUFT is there for you in complex times and provides important information. With the spread of COVID-19, independent journalism has never been more important in the public service. WUFT serves the north central Florida community and is committed to keeping you updated on the latest news from your community, state, and the world. If you are able to do so, please donate to WUFT so that we can stay strong. Support WUFT and your trusted journalism source during this critical time.

• Health: 102-year-old New Yorker recovering from coronavirus

• Health: New evidence suggests that COVID-19 patients on ventilators usually survive

• Business: JC Penney files for bankruptcy as bans take their toll

• Business: Bicycle sales are gearing up when home is bound. Try doing socially distant exercises

• Politics: President Trump is pushing for paused sports leagues to be opened

• National: Hundreds of prisoners have died of coronavirus in the US

• National: Police work during the coronavirus crisis

• Books: Hillary Without Bill? ‘Rodham’ imagines what could have been

About the current curator

I’m Ethan Magoc, a news editor at WUFT. I am originally from Pennsylvania and found a home that tells stories from Florida. I’m part of a team that searches every morning for local and state stories that are important to you. Please send feedback on today’s issue or ideas for stories we may have missed to [email protected].

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