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FL-- Florida News Digest

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Here's a look at how AP's general news coverage is shaping up for select Florida stories. For up-to-the minute information on AP's complete coverage of Florida and the rest of the world, visit Coverage Plan at newsroom.ap.org

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.

For access to AP Newsroom and other technical issues, contact AP Customer Support at apcustomersupport@ap.org or 877-836-9477.

This information is not for publication or broadcast, and these coverage plans are subject to change.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. Coverage Plan will keep you up to date. All times are Eastern unless specified otherwise.

TOP STORIES:

VIRUS OUTBREAK-FLORIDA-SCHOOL MASKS

A Florida judge has ruled the state cannot enforce its ban on mask mandates in public schools to guard against the coronavirus while an appeals court sorts out whether the ban is ultimately legal. Leon County Circuit Judge John C. Cooper lifted an automatic stay of his decision last week that Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis and state education officials exceeded their authority by imposing the blanket ban through executive order and tagging defiant pro-mask local school boards with financial penalties. The case next goes before the 1st District Court of Appeal in Tallahassee. DeSantis says he is optimistic the state would prevail. By Curt Anderson.

BUILDING COLLAPSE-MIAMI-STOLEN IDs

Prosecutors say three people have been arrested for stealing the identities of victims in June’s deadly South Florida condominium building collapse. The Miami-Dade State Attorney’s Office says Betsy Alexandra Cacho Medina, Rodney Choute and Kimberly Michelle Johnson were arrested Wednesday morning on multiple charges related to fraud and counterfeiting. UPCOMING: 350 words.

SCHOOL SHOOTING-FLORIDA

Attorneys for accused school shooter Nikolas Cruz are scheduled at a pretrial hearing to request access to grand jury testimony and evidence. Prosecutors will ask the judge to bar the defense from blaming the shooting on failures in the mental health system. By Terry Spencer. UPCOMING, By 5:30 p.m. EDT.

IN BRIEF:

ODD-BANANA TREE IN POTHOLE — A Florida man fed up with repeated potholes near his place of business has planted a banana tree in one of them to warn motorists away.

POLICE UNION-STOLEN MONEY — Officials say a former police officer has been arrested on felony charges, accused of stealing nearly $50,000 from a police union while he was its president.

MISSING DIVER-BODY FOUND — The U.S. Coast Guard says they’ve found the body of a Daytona Beach attorney who went missing while diving off the Atlantic Coast.

KEYS LIGHTHOUSE — A 148-year-old Florida Keys lighthouse could get a new life now that a community organization is poised to take ownership and begin a massive preservation project.

SPORTS:

BBN--METS-MARLINS

The New York Mets are only four games out in the NL East race, and look for a second consecutive win in Miami when they visit the Marlins on Wednesday night. Game begins 6:40 p.m. By Santos Perez. UPCOMING: 600 words, photos. UPCOMING, By 6:40 p.m. EDT, photo.

BBA--RAYS-RED SOX

Tampa Bay plays Boston at Fenway Park. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos. UPCOMING, By 7:10 p.m. EDT, photo.

HKN--PANTHERS-NIL DEAL

The Florida Panthers were seeking a female athlete from Florida Atlantic University to be the next college student they sign to an endorsement deal. Unable to choose one, they’re making the offer to more than 200 of them. By Tim Reynolds. SENT: 400 words, photo.

FBN--COWBOYS-BUCCANEERS PREVIEW

Gargantuan expectations don’t faze Tom Brady and the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who open the NFL season against Dak Prescott and the Dallas Cowboys. By Fred Goodall. UPCOMING: 700 words, photos by 5 p.m. ET.

FBN--JAGUARS-MEYER'S DEBUT

Urban Meyer is unbeaten in season openers, and most of them weren’t even close. He will try to extend his 17-0 record when the Jacksonville Jaguars travel to Houston for their season opener. By Mark Long. UPCOMING: 800 words by 3 a.m. ET

FBC--T25-ACC-DISAPPOINTING START

The Atlantic Coast Conference is in familiar territory: seeking national respectability, and the season just started. After the top three teams, Clemson, North Carolina and Miami, all stumbled out of the game the road to the ACC championship may be more wide open than it looked before the season began. By Pete Iacobelli. UPCOMING, 700 words by 3 p.m.

SPORTS BETTING

A look at the state of legal sports betting in the U.S. as the NFL and college football seasons get underway. SENT: 850 words , photo.

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