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5 Things To Know On Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Posted at 7:26 AM, Jan 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-01-12 07:26:19-05

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. Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick wins Florida's 20th Congressional District
The Associated Press declared Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick, a Democrat, the winner eight minutes after polling locations in Broward and Palm Beach counties closed.

Her Republican challenger Jason Mariner didn't stand much of a chance in a district that skews heavily Democratic.

Because the special election was to fill the remainder of Hastings' term, Cherfilus-McCormick will have to compete in another primary in August if she wants a shot at a full term.

Sheila Cherfilus-McCormick elected to Congress

2. Governor addresses abortion restriction, election bill and more
Gov. Ron DeSantis has a lot on his 2022 wishlist and Tuesday morning he aimed to rally the legislature to support those goals when he addressed lawmakers and Floridians during his annual "State of the State" address.

The governor’s election integrity package requires more security on ballot drop boxes, elevates ballot harvesting to a third-degree felony, and creates a new office to investigate voter fraud and other election crimes.

DeSantis didn't specifically endorse the proposed bill that would ban abortion at 15 weeks, however, he said that "a lot of pro-life legislation" would be introduced in the legislature and that "we are going to be welcoming it."

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis delivers 'State of the State' address

3. Police searching for missing teen in West Palm Beach
Kayla Carridis, 16, was last seen on Jan. 6 in the 2200 block of north Australian Avenue in West Palm Beach. She was wearing a black t-shirt, black pants and carrying a brown purse.

She is described as 5 feet tall, weighing 120 pounds with black hair and brown eyes.

Anyone who locates Carridis is asked to contact a local police agency or the West Palm Beach Police Department at (561) 822-1900 and reference case number 2022-251.

4. South Florida's counties' positivity rate at least 33%
The state's new cases are at the highest level since the pandemic began nearly two years ago, including 47,709 posted Tuesday with the record 77,156 Sunday.

Florida has recorded 271 COVID-19 deaths in a week for a total of 62,813.

Hospitalizations rose 1,190 in one day to 11,078, one week after 7,646 and two weeks after 3,836.

South Florida's counties' positivity rate at least 33%

5. Is recreational marijuana coming to Florida? No, but medical could get cheaper
Florida's 2022 legislative session kicks off on Tuesday and this year lawmakers are working to pass a bipartisan medical marijuana bill.

House Bill 679 would change Florida’s medical cannabis program, offering several technical clarifications.

The bill would reduce costs for people by requiring fewer doctor’s visits, allow patients to keep their registration cards for two years instead of one, and give people the option to use telehealth to refill their prescriptions.

Florida lawmakers work to change medical marijuana program as 2022 legislative session begins

Today's Forecast
Cooler temperatures and scattered rain on Wednesday

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On This Day In History
On January 12, 2010, Haiti is devastated by a massive earthquake. It drew an outpouring of support from around the globe but the small nation has yet to fully recover.

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."