Five Things to Know in Florida for May 11

SeaWorld Orlando’s new shark-themed coaster opening in June

Mako, the park’s first new high-thrill ride in seven years, is being billed as the tallest, longest and fastest roller coaster in Orlando. It opens to park-goers June 10. Mako, named after one of the fastest and most powerful sharks in the ocean, will be the centerpiece of the park’s Shark Wreck Reef. And it promises to be one of the more thrilling new attractions in the area this summer.

UNIVERSITY OF NORTH FLORIDA PRESIDENT GETS GRILLED BY FLORIDA GOVERNOR

UNF President John Delaney went before Gov. Rick Scott and members of the Florida Cabinet on Tuesday to explain why a bond rating agency two months ago downgraded bonds issued several years ago by the school to build a campus facility.

BIG-TIME BONUS: FLORIDA TO GIVE EXITING JOBS CHIEF $132,500

The board of Enterprise Florida is expected on Wednesday to approve a severance payment to departing CEO Bill Johnson. Johnson announced his resignation in March, shortly after the Florida Legislature rejected Gov. Rick Scott’s proposal to spend more money on trying to lure new companies to the state. Johnson, who is leaving in late June, has a base salary of $265,000, although he was also eligible for bonuses.

FATE OF FLORIDA’S VOUCHER PROGRAM BACK BEFORE COURT

Judges with the 1st District Court of Appeal held a nearly hour-long hearing Tuesday on whether a lawsuit filed by the Florida Education Association and others should be tossed out. Nearly a year ago a circuit judge ruled that the association, the state’s teacher union, did not have a legal right to challenge the program that serves more than 78,000 students.

SURVEY: ORLANDO HOMELESSNESS DECLINED BY ALMOST A QUARTER

The results of the survey released Monday shows that there were 1,613 homeless people in Orange, Osceola and Seminole counties in January. Last year, the central Florida homeless survey counted 2,112 individuals.

 

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