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5 Things To Know On Friday, March 12, 2021

Posted at 6:55 AM, Mar 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-12 06:55:25-05

While you were sleeping, we compiled the biggest stories of the day in one place. Each story has a quick and easy summary, so you're prepared for whatever the day brings. Just click on the links if you want to know more!

1. "America is coming back:" Biden says in first presidential prime time address
President Joe Biden delivered his first prime-time address of his presidency last night.

During the address, Biden said he will direct states to make coronavirus vaccines available to all adults by May 1 in an effort to return the US to a state of normalcy by July 4.

As part of Biden’s May 1 deadline for states, the administration will launch a “find a vaccination” website. The administration will also have a 1-800 number by May 1 to provide guidance and assistance with finding a vaccine.

Biden directs states to make vaccines available to all adults by May 1

2. How much will Florida receive from the American Rescue Plan?
Your stimulus check could be in your bank account by the end of the week, but how much money will Florida communities receive from the $1.9 trillion package.

Under the state and local assistance provisions of the American Rescue Plan, U.S. Rep. Ted Deutch said Florida will receive $10.232 billion, metro cities in Florida will receive $1.465 billion and other non-county jurisdictions will receive $1.397 billion. Counties in Florida will receive about $4.165 billion.

You can see a full breakdown of the funds at the link above.

Florida to receive $10.2 billion from America Rescue Plan

3. Adults 60 and older can now book vaccine appointments through Publix
Governor Ron DeSantis announced the state will drop the age of eligibility from 65 to 60 as of Monday, March 15. However, because Friday's appointments will be scheduled for next week, Publix is allowing adults in that age group to start booking appointments.

Publix says it will continue to prioritize educators of all ages due to President Biden's directive for the federal pharmacy program. On Wednesday, Publix says it booked 13,500 appointments for the Johnson and Johnson vaccine and about 47% of them went to educators in that priority group.

Appointments open at 7 a.m. To book an appointment through Publix, click here.

Adults 60 and older can now book vaccine appointments through Publix

4. New ruling could force PBCSD to share millions in taxpayer money with charter schools
After voters overwhelmingly approved a tax hike in 2018 to benefit district schools and exclude charters, the charter schools fought back and now claimed a new victory involving your tax money.

A 43-page ruling issued on Feb. 24 by the Fourth District Court of Appeal effectively reverses two previous legal victories for the School District of Palm Beach County.

Now the district could be forced to share millions of dollars with charter schools that they feel is their fair share. But the school district said it's following the will of the voters.

New ruling could force School District of Palm Beach County to share millions in taxpayer money with charter schools

5. Is a new sales tax coming to your online order?
Lawmakers advanced a revamped version of HB 15 Thursday morning, 16-2. The legislation forces retailers to collect online sales tax, which most Floridians don't pay on their own.

While lawmakers in the Ways and Means Committee gave the policy bipartisan support, opponents said it equated to a new tax on consumers to support a shoddy unemployment program.

Rep. Anna Eskamani, D-Orlando, suggested the online sales tax could be better spent. She floated boosting Florida's maximum unemployment wage a hundred dollars to $375 each week. The state's rate is currently one of the lowest in the nation.

Could Florida implement an online sales tax?

Today's Forecast
Breezy and warm Friday:

Latest Weather Forecast: Friday 5 a.m.

Get your complete hour-by-hour forecast here.

On This Day In History
On March 12, 1933, eight days after his inauguration, President Franklin D. Roosevelt gives his first national radio address—or “fireside chat”—broadcast directly from the White House.

In this March 1933, file photo, President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivers his first radio "fireside chat" in Washington. The New Deal was a try-anything moment during the Great Depression that remade the role of the federal government in American life. (AP Photo)

Remember, you can join Mike Trim and Ashleigh Walters every weekday on WPTV NewsChannel 5 beginning at 4:30 a.m. And you can always watch the latest news from WPTV anytime on your favorite streaming device. Just search for "WPTV."