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5 Things To Know On Monday, December 13, 2021

Posted at 7:10 AM, Dec 13, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-13 07:10:56-05

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. Deadly tornadoes devastate communities in six states
Dozens of people in five states have been killed by tornadoes that leveled entire communities on Friday night, but the toll at a Kentucky candle factory is not as devastating as initially feared.

Officials initially said only 40 of 110 workers at Mayfield Consumer Products had been rescued, but spokesman Bob Ferguson now says eight people are confirmed dead, eight are missing and more than 90 people have been located.

Still, the governor expects the statewide toll to reach at least 50, and at least 14 people are dead in four other states: Illinois, Tennessee, Arkansas and Missouri.

Kentucky tornado death toll in dozens; less than feared at factory

2. Could this week's expanded child tax credit payment be the last?
The final payment from the expanded child tax credit is scheduled to go out Dec. 15. and early analysis shows the extra cash has lowered poverty rates by around 40%.

The Build Back Better bill, which the Senate is expected to debate vigorously this week, would expand the credit for another year.

The future of that bill is very much unclear. For the bill to pass, every Democrat must support it because all Republicans are opposed. The vice president would break a potential tie.

Could this week's expanded child tax credit payment be the last?

3. New rules for shelters housing unaccompanied migrant children in Florida
Weeks after the Dream Center in Sarasota was forced to relocate nearly 60 unaccompanied migrant kids in its care because the state wouldn't renew its license in time, and one week after we pressed the governor on how his new anti-immigration policies caused this chaos, the center was suddenly granted a new license.

The must-have state license was provided just a day before Florida's Department of Children and Families (DCF) was scheduled to explain to a judge why it had been stonewalling the nonprofit for months.

According to the new rule, shelters housing unaccompanied children can't get licensed or granted a license renewal unless the feds agree to provide the state notice before they move unaccompanied kids to Florida.

New rules for shelters housing unaccompanied migrant children

4. Prosecution rests in sex-abuse trial of Ghislaine Maxwell
Prosecutors at the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell have completed presenting their case against the British socialite accused of sexually abusing teenage girls with her late companion, financier Jeffrey Epstein.

Prosecutors called 24 witnesses across 10 days of testimony in the criminal sex trafficking trial. The defense is expected to start its case next Thursday. The trial will not sit Monday through Wednesday due to a scheduling conflict for the judge.

Defense attorneys moved for an acquittal at the end of the court Friday, which is standard practice after the prosecution rests. Judge Alison Nathan denied the motion.

Prosecution rests in sex-abuse trial of Ghislaine Maxwell

5. Florida records coronavirus spike after Thanksgiving
Florida's coronavirus situation worsened in one week in deaths, cases, hospitalizations and first-time positivity rate though nowhere near as high as during the summer.

Florida's coronavirus deaths increased by 325. Last week saw 153 coronavirus deaths, which is the lowest since early in the pandemic last year.

Also, the 1,383 hospitalizations are about 150 more than a record-low Nov. 29 with the first-time positivity rate at 2.6% compared with 2.5% the previous week after back-to-back all-time lows of 2.4%,


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On This Day In History
Vice President Al Gore concedes defeat to George W. Bush in his bid for the presidency, following weeks of legal battles over the recounting of votes in Florida, on December 13, 2000.

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