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More than 80% of Florida residents don't have flood insurance

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More than 80% of Florida residents don't have flood insurance


WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — With the threat of flooding this week, we are learning more than 80% of Floridians still don’t have flood insurance.

That’s a stark contrast to the 18% of homeowners in the state who have a flood policy, and experts said that’s a big risk in a place where flooding can happen in every corner of the state.

Regular policies don’t cover flooding and unlike regular homeowners insurance policies, costs for flood insurance are not skyrocketing.

“The average cost of flood insurance in Florida is under a $1,000, so that’s less than $100 a month. There are many areas of Florida where you can get flood insurance for $40 to $50 a month,” Mark Friedlander, of the Insurance Information Institute, said. “If you don’t live in a coastal area, meaning just 10 to 15 miles away from the coast, you can get very moderate costing flood insurance.”

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Flood insurance is available either nationally or privately and there is a waiting period after buying it, so don’t think you can run out, purchase it now and get covered this week.





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Ex-Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby fights for Florida condo after dodging jail time

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Ex-Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby fights for Florida condo after dodging jail time


Former Baltimore City State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby is fighting to keep her Florida condominium from being sold off as she appeals her mortgage fraud conviction, with her lawyers arguing the residence is her only “significant asset.”. 

Federal prosecutors are planning to seize the condo on Florida’s gulf coast, according to a May 23 order by Judge Lydia Griggs. Prosecutors argue that Mosby should be required to give up the property following her mortgage fraud conviction in February 2024, Fox 45 News reported. 

Mosby bought the condo in February 2021 for $476,000 in Long Boat Key, Fl. She would get her $47,600 down payment back, if the condo is sold for a profit, according to court documents.

BALTIMORE’S FORMER TOP PROSECUTOR MARILYN MOSBY HAS TRIAL DELAYED AFTER ENTIRE DEFENSE TEAM QUITS

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Former Baltimore State’s Attorney Marilyn Mosby arrives at the federal courthouse in Greenbelt, Maryland, with her lawyer, federal public defender James Wyda. (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images) (Kevin Richardson/Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

Mosby was granted a request to stay out of prison amid her appeal, but she is still seeking a presidential pardon.

Mosby’s legal team said the property was purchased in an effort to secure financial independence amid a crumbling marriage.

“And while Ms. Mosby awaits the outcome of her appeal, the home has served as a critical source of rental income; it could soon become her sole source of income now that her legal career is in jeopardy,” court documents state. 

FORMER BALTIMORE PROSECUTOR MARILYN MOSBY FACES POSSIBLE DISBARMENT AMID ONGOING LEGAL BATTLES

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Marilyn Mosby

Marilyn Mosby, pictured last year, is facing two counts each of perjury and mortgage fraud. Mosby is fighting to save her Florida condominium from being sold off.  (Jerry Jackson/Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

“The home is Ms. Mosby’s only significant asset,” the documents said. 

Her defense team noted that since Mosby’s original purchase price of the condo at $476,000, Redfin estimates the property to be worth $886,084 and Zillow estimates the property is worth $781,800, the news station reported. 

Mosby was convicted on one count of mortgage fraud in February, after she testified that she unintentionally made false statements on loan applications to buy two Florida vacation homes. 

Marilyn Mosby

Marilyn Mosby, middle, is asking President Biden for a pardon upon her fraud conviction. (Kenneth K. Lam/Baltimore Sun/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

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In November, she was convicted of two counts of perjury by a federal jury after she falsely claimed financial hardship during the COVID-19 pandemic in order to withdraw money from the city’s retirement fund. She has not been sentenced in either case.

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Florida's first drive-thru-only Wawa now open

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Florida's first drive-thru-only Wawa now open


Floridas first drive-thru Wawa is now open in Largo. (Photo: Wawa)

Are you craving a hoagie from Wawa but loathe getting out of the car? 

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Florida’s first-ever standalone drive-thru Wawa is now open for business! 

The 2,200-square-foot store is located at 2530 E. Bay Drive in Largo, which is about 5 miles southeast of Clearwater in Pinellas County. It’s the third drive-thru Wawa in the U.S. 

Is Cook Out coming to Florida? Late-night fast food chain with extensive menu could be expanding

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The drive-thru Wawa will be open daily from 5:30 a.m. to midnight and will serve guests’ favorite breakfast, lunch and dinner items like hoagies, burgers, fries, coffee, breakfast sandwiches, specialty beverages and bakery items. 

“Wawa has a long history of testing and innovating new store formats to provide the greatest level of convenience for our customers,” said Senior Director of Store Operations Robert Yeatts. “With our new Largo store, we will continue to learn from this new format while gathering feedback from our customers and associates.”

Florida’s first drive-thru Wawa location held a grand opening ceremony on June 13, 2024. (Photo: Wawa)

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20 Jack in the Box locations planned for Orlando

A grand opening celebration was held on Thursday morning. 



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DeSantis appointees approve new $17B deal with Disney. 5th Florida theme park on the way?

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DeSantis appointees approve new $17B deal with Disney. 5th Florida theme park on the way?


ORLANDO, Fla. – Gov. Ron DeSantis’ appointees on Wednesday gave final approval to an agreement that buries the hatchet between Disney and the governing district for Walt Disney World, which the Florida governor took over after the company two years ago publicly opposed a state law critics dubbed “Don’t Say Gay.”

The five DeSantis-appointed board members to the Central Florida Tourism Oversight District unanimously voted to approve a 15-year development deal in which the district committed to making infrastructure improvements in exchange for Disney investing up to $17 billion into Disney World over the next two decades.

The agreement followed a detente in March in which both sides agreed to stop litigating each other in state court and work towards negotiating a new development agreement and a new comprehensive plan no later than next year. The district provides municipal services such as firefighting, planning and mosquito control, among other things, and was controlled by Disney supporters before the takeover by the DeSantis appointees.

District board member Brian Aungst said at Wednesday night’s board meeting that the agreement provides a lasting and stable framework for Disney and the board to work together.

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“This is the day we all have been looking forward to,” Aungst said. “I was always extremely optimistic and knew we would get here because it was the right outcome.”

Under the deal, Disney will be required to donate up to 100 acres (40 hectares) of Disney World’s 24,000 acres (9,700 hectares) for the construction of infrastructure projects controlled by the district. The company also will need to award at least half of its construction projects to companies based in Florida and spend at least $10 million on affordable housing for central Florida.

Disney would then be approved to build a fifth major theme park at Disney World and two more minor parks, such as water parks, if it desired. The company could raise the number of hotel rooms on its property from almost 40,000 rooms to more than 53,000 rooms and increase the amount of retail and restaurant space by more than 20%. Disney will retain control of building heights due to its need to maintain an immersive environment.

Leaders of Orlando’s tourism industry praised the agreement, telling the district’s board members that it will bring boundless jobs, tourists and attention to central Florida.

“It very clearly demonstrates to the world that the district and Disney are eager to resume working together for the great state of Florida,” said Robert Earl, founder and CEO of Planet Hollywood International, Inc.

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Still up in the air was an appeal of a federal lawsuit Disney had filed against DeSantis and his appointees. After the settlement was reached in March, Disney asked the appellate court to put that case on hold while the development agreement was negotiated. The company has until next week to file a brief with the court if it wants to move ahead with the case.

Disney didn’t respond to an email Wednesday afternoon seeking comment on how the company planned to proceed. The DeSantis appointees to the district had planned to hold a closed-door discussion about the lawsuit after their board meeting Wednesday but cancelled that meeting.

Matthew Oberly, a spokesperson for the district, said Wednesday night that the district didn’t have any comment on the future of the federal litigation.

The March settlement ended almost two years of litigation sparked by DeSantis’ takeover of the district following the company’s opposition to the 2022 law that bans classroom lessons on sexual orientation and gender identity in early grades. The law was championed by the Republican governor, who used Disney as a punching bag in speeches during his run for the 2024 GOP presidential nomination until he suspended his campaign earlier this year.

As punishment for Disney’s opposition to the controversial law, DeSantis took over the governing district through legislation passed by the Republican-controlled Florida Legislature and appointed a new board of supervisors. Disney sued DeSantis and his appointees, claiming the company’s free speech rights were violated for speaking out against the legislation. A federal judge dismissed that lawsuit in January, but Disney appealed.

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Before control of the district changed hands early last year, the Disney supporters on its board signed agreements with the company shifting control over design and construction at Disney World to the company. The new DeSantis appointees claimed the “eleventh-hour deals” neutered their powers, and the district sued the company in state court in Orlando to have the contracts voided.

Disney filed counterclaims that included asking the state court to declare the agreements valid and enforceable. Those state court lawsuits were dismissed as part of the March settlement.

___

Follow Mike Schneider on the social platform X: @MikeSchneiderAP.

Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

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