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About 2 million people a year visit Key West — and almost half of them get there on cruise ships. With the industry on pause due to the coronavirus pandemic, some folks on the island are working on a reset.

Updated at 4 a.m. ET Friday

Fire ravaged the 3rd Precinct police building in Minneapolis on Thursday night as thousands of people jammed downtown streets on the third night of furious protests over the death of a black man after an encounter with police. A police spokesman said personnel at the precinct were safe.

Updated at 9:38 a.m. ET

More than 1 in 4 U.S. workers have lost their jobs since the coronavirus crisis shut down much of the economy in March.

Just last week, another 2.1 million people filed for unemployment benefits, the Labor Department said Thursday. That's down 323,000 from the previous week but brings the total for the past 10 weeks to 40.8 million, which represents 26% of the civilian labor force in April.

State revenue was off $878.1 million in April from an earlier estimate as tourism and hospitality-related industries, along with car sales, were grounded by the coronavirus, according to economists.

hurricane damage to a sign and building
NEWS SERVICE OF FLORIDA

With the six-month Atlantic hurricane season starting Monday, emergency management officials have changed how Florida will respond to storms as they grapple with the coronavirus pandemic.

Tropical Storm Bertha satellite
NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

Tropical storm warnings are in effect for portions of South Carolina after the second named storm of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season formed on Wednesday.

Updated at 9:59 p.m. ET

Twitter has placed a fact-checking warning on a pair of tweets issued by President Trump in which he claims without evidence that mail-in ballots are fraudulent.

Twitter's move on Tuesday marks the first time the technology company has sanctioned Trump as criticism mounts about how the president has amplified misinformation to more than 80 million followers on the social media platform.

Trump responded by accusing Twitter of stifling free speech.

Starting Friday, shoppers in Florida emerging from coronavirus stay-at-home orders can avoid paying sales taxes while putting together disaster-preparation stockpiles for the 2020 hurricane season.

CARL LISCIANDRELLO/WUSF PUBLIC MEDIA

After bottoming out earlier this month, gas prices in Florida have risen to their highest level since February, when the coronavirus pandemic limited demand.

An influx of visitors to Mexico Beach over the weekend signals tourism is off to a better start ahead of the summer vacation season compared to this time last year.

“It’s packed - people are everywhere,” said Mayor Al Cathey after driving down the town’s main road on Saturday afternoon. “The power of that white sand is remarkable.”

Cathey says he didn’t expect so many people to arrive in town for Memorial Day weekend amid the pandemic. “You can’t barely pull off the road,” he said. “I don't know how much gathering we can do on the beach and not have a problem."

Updated at 3 p.m. ET

President Trump said Friday that state governors should allow churches, synagogues, mosques and other houses of worship to reopen immediately.

In brief comments at the White House, Trump said houses of worship are "essential places that provide essential services." Churches have faced restrictions for gatherings and ceremonies as public health officials worked to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Some have chafed at the restrictions.

Youth sports and summer camps will be free to continue operations, after a Friday morning announcement from Gov. DeSantis lifting all restrictions on the activities effective immediately. 

A yellow beach sign encourages people to stay six feet apart.
Daylina Miller/WUSF Public Media

Memorial Day weekend is usually one of the busiest on Florida's beaches.

But Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said Friday that won't be the case this year. Speaking to reporters at an outdoor beach command center, he said Pinellas leaders want to make sure there's no spike in the number of COVID-19 cases.

A data breach has occurred at Florida's Department of Economic Opportunity. The Department says it notified individuals that were part of the incident associated with unemployment claims. Exactly how many people are impacted has not been released.

In a letter to the department's head, Dem. Senator Linda Stewart (D-Orlando) asked how many people are affected, what information was released, how the breach occurred, and what is being done to make sure it won't happen again.

Rainbow wrist bands
Daylina Miller/WUSF News

St. Pete Pride has canceled its 2020 event due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to a news release.

The NCAA is clearing the way for college football, men's basketball and women's basketball to resume on-campus activities on June 1, even as universities map out how they might return to a new normal during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many schools are also facing a sharp drop in revenue that would be made far worse if the upcoming college football season is canceled.

Hurricane Michael satellite image
NOAA

There’s a better-than-average chance that the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season will produce an above-average number of storms.

Unemployment claim form
iStock

The number of Floridians who filed new unemployment claims last week remained almost unchanged from the previous week.

Catholic church parishioners wearing masks in service
DIOCESE OF ST. PETERSBURG

Two weeks after announcing Catholics across Tampa Bay can take part in public Masses from Monday through Saturday, parishioners now will be able to attend on Sundays.

Woman wearing mask
U.S. Army photo

A new survey shows one out of four people in the state have had their work hours cut because of the pandemic - and nearly 18 percent have been laid off from work.

The Sunshine State Survey of 600 people was done by Nielsen and the University of South Florida. According to USF assistant professor Joshua Scacco, six out of 10 respondents said they are concerned about the effect the economic shutdown is having on their finances.

With a holiday weekend coming up, some popular South Florida vacation destinations aren’t fully reopening tourist spots until after Memorial Day.

Miami-Dade and Broward counties are the last two in Florida to join the rest of the state in Governor Ron DeSantis’ "Phase One" of reopening. But with Memorial Day weekend fast approaching, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez says reopenings won’t include beaches and other entertainment options until after the holiday. That’s in an effort to avoid an influx of vacationers.

Tropical Storm Arthur track
NATIONAL HURRICANE CENTER

Tropical Storm Arthur moved further out to sea Tuesday and was expected to dissipate into a depression before dumping heavy rain on Bermuda later in the week.

Beachgoers at the ocean
Visit Sarasota

By a 4-1 vote, Sarasota City Commissioners have decided to reopen Lido Beach.  

Gov. Ron DeSantis at the podium
WFSU

Gov. Ron DeSantis said Monday that most remaining unsettled claims in the state’s heavily criticized unemployment system are due to incomplete applications.

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell warns it could be another year and a half before the U.S. recovers from the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic. But he says this will not be another Great Depression.

"It's going to be a very sharp downturn," Powell said in an interview with 60 Minutes that aired Sunday. "It should be a much shorter downturn than you would associate with the 1930s."

Tropical Storm Arthur began to strengthen Sunday, and it is forecast to continue doing so as it brushes by the Mid-Atlantic states Monday.

Tropical Storm Arthur was located about 310 miles south-southwest of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina with maximum sustained winds of 45 mph, according to the National Hur

Saturday 11 pm EDT Update: Hurricane hunters have found the tropical depression east of #Florida has strengthened into Tropical Storm #Arthur. Forecast track shifted slightly east, farther off the coast of the Carolinas.

Original story Saturday afternoon:  The first tropical depression of the year has formed just east of Florida, sixteen days prior to the official start of the Atlantic hurricane season.

bulldozer figthing forest fire
Florida Forest Service

The Jay B. Starkey Wilderness Park in Pasco County reopened Saturday morning after firefighters spent a day dealing with a 110-acre blaze.

Waiter wearing mask waits on man and woman at restaurant patio.
City of Sarasota

Now that Gov. Ron DeSantis has announced expanded capacity for restaurants starting Monday, local communities are figuring out how to enact those orders. 

Under the governor's directive, restaurants will be allowed to operate at 50% capacity. They can also expand outdoor service as long as there is a six foot distance between tables.

Smoke from Pasco brush fire
florida forest service

Starkey Park in Pasco County is closed Friday due to a brush fire.

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