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5 Things To Know On Thursday, August 12, 2021

Posted at 6:53 AM, Aug 12, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-12 06:53:08-04

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. Is Fred dead? Not quite:
Tropical Storm Fred weakened Wednesday evening into a Tropical Depression over central Hispanola and its forecast track has shifted west, putting more of Palm Beach County and the Treasure Coast out of the cone of uncertainty.

By tomorrow morning as it brushes by northern Cuba, it will interact with warm water and restrengthen back into a tropical storm as it pushes towards the Keys.

While Palm Beach County may not be directly affected, it won't exactly be a beach weekend. Strong storms and gusty winds are expected throughout the weekend.

Tracking the Tropics: Thursday 5 a.m.

2. Ready for a show? The Perseid meteor shower is upon us once again:
The Perseid meteor shower will peak from midnight on August 11 to dawn on August 13 but actually runs from July 23 to August 22, according to The Old Farmer's Almanac.

Because the crescent moon will be setting early, the sky will be especially dark -- which makes for an optimal viewing opportunity, according to NASA.

    Up to 40 meteors can be seen per hour to people whose in the Northern Hemisphere viewing locations are far from light pollution.

    'Best meteor shower of the year': Perseids to delight stargazers

    3. What did we learn from the Census? We'll find out today:
    The U.S. Census Bureau is releasing new population data that will be used to reshape U.S. House seats and state legislative districts for the next decade on Thursday.

    That will serve as the building block for redistricting that must be done in most states before the 2022 elections.

    The official goal is to redraw districts with roughly the same number of people, but many Republicans and Democrats also will be trying to draw districts that make it more likely for their candidates to win.

    Census data kicks off effort to reshape US House districts

    4. The latest on the battle for mask mandates in Florida schools:
    As several counties refuse to comply Gov. Ron DeSantis' order to ban mask mandates in school, Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran said in letters to each of the districts that they could lose funds "in an amount equal to the salaries of the Superintendent and the members of the School Board."

    Several Democratic state senators plan to start a fundraising effort to offset any losses. Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried has also started working with the White House to find other revenue streams to aid schools. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki suggested Tuesday that federal COVID-19 relief funds earmarked for schools could fill the potential losses.

    Meanwhile, Gov. Ron DeSantis dismissed the federal-dollars idea as misappropriation and warned he wouldn't back down if federal officials made further efforts to void his directive.

    State, federal officials work to circumvent Florida governor's school mask mandate ban

    5. COVID-19 booster shot? Just for the immunocompromised:
    The Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize a COVID-19 booster shot for some people with compromised immune systems on Thursday.

    The emergency use authorization will have to be amended to allow doctors to prescribe a booster shot, according to CNN. The current authorization only allows for two doses of the Pfizer or Modern vaccines and one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

    The CDC says people with compromised immune systems include those with HIV/AIDS, cancer and transplant patients.

    Reports: FDA to authorize COVID-19 booster shot for immunocompromised

    Today's Forecast
    Increasing rain chances as Tropical Depression Fred moves a little closer:

    Latest Weather Forecast: Thursday 5 a.m.

    Get your complete hour-by-hour forecast here.

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    On This Day In History
    On August 12, 1990, fossil hunter Susan Hendrickson discovers three huge bones jutting out of a cliff near Faith, South Dakota. They turn out to be part of the largest-ever Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton ever discovered, a 65 million-year-old specimen dubbed Sue, after its discoverer.

    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."