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Feds: Relax protections for woodpecker endangered since 1970

By JANET McCONNAUGHEY Associated Press The red-cockaded woodpecker, a bird declared endangered in 1970 and surviving today in the scattered longleaf pine forests that remain in 11 U.S. states, has recovered enough to relax federal protections on the species, officials said Friday. But ...

Florida governor reopening state’s economy despite spread

By BOBBY CAINA CALVAN Associated Press TALLAHASSEE (AP) — Gov. Ron DeSantis lifted all restrictions on restaurants and other businesses in Florida on Friday in a move to reopen the state's economy despite the spread of the coronavirus. "We're not closing anything going forward," DeSantis ...

Woman dies after snorkeling in Florida Keys

KEY WEST (AP) — A Florida woman died after snorkeling in the Keys over the weekend, officials said. Kim Ellen Schwinge, 63, of Port Orange, was on a snorkeling trip Sunday morning near Key West, according to a Monroe County Sheriff's Office news release. A family member noticed that ...

Vote expected on staggered reopening of Miami-Dade schools

By Associated Press MIAMI (AP) — Florida's largest school district is proposing to have all willing students back in classrooms by Oct. 7, but a final vote was delayed by more than 18 hours of public comment. The Miami-Dade County School District proposed to have a staggered reopening of ...

In battleground states, Catholics are a pivotal swing vote

By DAVID CRARY AP National Writer For decades, Roman Catholic voters have been a pivotal swing vote in U.S. presidential elections, with a majority backing the winner — whether Republican or Democrat — nearly every time. How they vote in the battleground states this year could well ...

5M in drugs seized during Delaware’s largest fentanyl bust

NEWARK, Del. (AP) — Delaware State Police and the FBI have confiscated more than $5 million worth of heroin, cocaine and fentanyl in what investigators called the largest fentanyl seizure in the state's history. The two-year investigation led to the arrests of more than two dozen suspects, ...

Bloomberg raises millions to help Florida felons vote

By BRENDAN FARRINGTON Associated Press TALLAHASSEE (AP) — Just days after after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis won a court victory to keep felons from voting until they've paid off fines, restitution and court fees, billionaire Mike Bloomberg has stepped in to help them pay off the debts. The ...

Graham: GOP has votes to confirm Trump court pick by Nov. 3

By LISA MASCARO, ZEKE MILLER and JONATHAN LEMIRE Associated Press WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans have the votes to confirm President Donald Trump's Supreme Court pick before the Nov. 3 presidential election, according to the Senate Judiciary chairman who will shepherd the nomination through ...

Florida decision likely clears Pats owner of solicitation

By TERRY SPENCER Associated Press FORT LAUDERDALE (AP) — Florida prosecutors said Monday that they will not appeal a court ruling throwing out video recordings allegedly showing New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft paying for massage parlor sex acts, making it likely that misdemeanor ...

Report: Order to shorten count wasn’t made by Census Bureau

By MIKE SCHNEIDER Associated Press ORLANDO  (AP) — The decision to shorten by a month the 2020 head count of every U.S. resident was not made by the U.S. Census Bureau, and some agency officials suspect it was made by the White House or the Department of Commerce, according to a report ...