December 1, 2021

Federal judge throws out Florida, Seminole Tribe gaming compact

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| 11/23/2021

Federal judge throws out Florida, Seminole Tribe gaming compact

On Monday, a federal judge threw out the game compact between the State of Florida and the Seminole Tribe on the grounds that it violates the Indian Gaming Regulation Act (IGRA) by allowing people to bet when they're not physically on Indian Lands. The compact, by allowing people to use an electronic device to place a bet when they're within the state but not on Indian Lands "grants the Tribe a monopoly over both all online betting and all wagers on major sporting events," the opinion by Judge Dabney Friedrich said. More from WFTS.

United Way launches effort to help Tampa Bay tenants apply for rent aid

United Way Suncoast announced Monday that it will spend $3 million to try to reduce evictions in the Tampa Bay area, in part by helping tenants apply for millions in unspent government rental aid. The local charity is planning to hire a dozen “rental navigators,” as well as train volunteers who can help guide tenants through the application process to increase their chances of success. “There’s a lot of money, and more money coming,” said Emery Ivery, United Way Suncoast’s chief impact officer for financial stability and support services. “Thousands of families can be helped with those dollars.” More from the Tampa Bay Times.

Governor DeSantis announces Florida visitation tops pre-pandemic levels

Governor DeSantis made this announcement based on VISIT FLORIDA’s estimates that show Florida welcomed a total of 32.5 million travelers in Q3 2021. This announcement also marks the second consecutive quarter of growth in domestic visitation, with 31.2 million domestic travelers to Florida in Q3, reflecting an increase of nearly 7 percent from 2019. In addition, approximately 1.2 million visitors traveled to Florida from overseas, and 85,000 from Canada between July and September of 2021, representing a 597 percent increase from 2020, and a 16.1 percent increase from Q2 2021. More from VISIT FLORIDA.

CDC expands booster eligibility - How and when to get your shot

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Rochelle Walensky endorsed the eligibility expansion following a unanimous vote from the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. “Booster shots have demonstrated the ability to safely increase people’s protection against infection and severe outcomes and are an important public health tool to strengthen our defenses against the virus as we enter the winter holidays,” Walensky said Friday. More from CDC.

Florida parents say they want rights in schools. What does that mean?

Earlishia Oates has plenty of reasons to demand more of the public school system. The single mother of four recounted the times when she attended planning meetings for her son with special education needs, only to have her input ignored. She spoke passionately about how Hillsborough County district officials did little to improve schools in her east Tampa community, then tried to shutter the area charter school that makes a difference. Lodging grievances or seeking redress isn’t easy for Oates or her working neighbors, either. More from the Tampa Bay Times.

Life and Culture
Laundromat speakeasy Dirty Laundry opens in St. Petersburg with cocktails and Cuban flair

 At first glance, Dirty Laundry is a low-key eatery tucked inside a laundromat-themed room. During the day, visitors can enjoy cafe con leches and pressed sandwiches. But at night, the space at 1742 Central Ave. has a secret. Peek behind one of those washing machines, and you’ll find yourself inside a colorful, dreamy cocktail bar inspired by the Cuban histories of Ybor City and Havana.

» More from the Tampa Bay Times.


Florida Small Business
Success Stories

 As the pandemic impacted small businesses across the state, Pop Goes the Waffle owner Sara Fludd shut down her business for months. With the help of the Florida SBDC at Pinellas County Economic Development and Pinellas County Economic Development team, Fludd applied for and received an Economic Injury Disaster Loan. Pop Goes the Waffle also received a grant from the Vinik Sports Group, owned by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik, and donated and delivered 5,000 waffles to frontline workers and children in summer programs in the area.

» Read more from Florida Trend.

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Against the backdrop of a bright blue sky and a calm lake, the Hyper-Sub roars to life. The sleek, black vessel hums loudly from its docked position at the Lake Side Park Boat Ramp in Lake Butler, Florida. But this boat attracts crowds of adults and children because it looks like a submarine.

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