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BC-FL-Florida News Digest, FL

March 21, 2019

Good morning! Here’s a look at how AP’s general news coverage is shaping up in Florida. Questions about coverage plans are welcome and should be directed to the AP-Miami bureau at 305-594-5825 or miami@ap.org. Ian Mader is the news editor and can be reached at imader@ap.org. David Fischer is on the desk and can be reached at dfischer@ap.org. A reminder this information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change. Expected stories may not develop, or late-breaking and more newsworthy events may take precedence. Advisories and digests will keep you up to date. All times are Eastern. Some TV and radio stations will receive shorter APNewsNow versions of the stories below, along with all updates.

TOP STORIES:

XGR-FLORIDA HOUSE

TALLAHASSEE _ The Florida House votes on several bills, including one that would eliminate the need to prove a viable market before hospitals can be built or expand. By Brendan Farrington.

XGR--ETHICS-FLORIDA

TALLAHASSEE _ A Florida House committee considers a bill to beef up ethics laws that apply to elected officials. By Brendan Farrington. On Merits.

XGR-SCHOOL SAFETY-FLORIDA

TALLAHASSEE _ A Florida House committee votes on its version of a broad school safety bill that includes a provision allowing classroom teachers to be armed. By Curt Anderson. UPCOMING: 500 words.

XGR-FLORIDA-SENATE

TALLAHASSEE _ The Florida Senate votes on a handful of bills, including a measure that would prohibit local governments from banning front yard vegetable gardens. By Brendan Farrington. UPCOMING: 500 words.

REDRAWING AMERICA-IMBALANCE OF POWER

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. _ Democrats won more votes, regained control of the U.S. House and flipped hundreds of seats in state legislatures during the 2018 elections. It was, by most accounts, a good year for the party. Yet it wasn’t as bad as it could have been for Republicans. That’s because they may have benefited from a built-in advantage in some states, based on how political districts were drawn, that prevented deeper losses or helped them hold on to power, according to a mathematical analysis by The Associated Press. By David Z. Lieb. SENT: 1386 words with AP Photos.

IN BRIEF:

BEACH CRASH-KIDS INJURED _ The Florida Highway Patrol says a sports utility vehicle driven by an 82-year-old man ripped through a wooden barrier separating a parking lot from the beach and hit four children in the sand.

HATE MESSAGESMIAMI BEACH _ Police say they’ve arrested a man linked to drawing swastikas and writing “death” and “kill the Jews” around Miami Beach. Investigators charged Sean Kenna late Wednesday with seven counts of felony criminal mischief. Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle will now review the case for possible hate crime enhancements.

HOT VEHICLE DEATH _ Authorities say a Florida woman has been charged in the death of a 4-year-old boy who was left in a hot minivan for more than six hours. The Orlando Sentinel reports 27-year-old Mariah Butler was arrested Tuesday and charged with aggravated manslaughter and child neglect.

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If you have stories of regional or statewide interest, please email them to miami@ap.org. If you have photos of regional or statewide interest, please send them to the AP state photo center in New York, 888-273-6867. For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support atapcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477.

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The AP.