It’s Wednesday, January 27th - and NBC 6 has the top stories for the day.
No. 1 - The effort to get more COVID-19 vaccines in Florida has Gov. Ron DeSantis clashing with President Joe Biden's White House over the number of doses the state is receiving and how they're being administered.
Late Tuesday, the governor announced in a tweet that the state is receiving 307,000 first-dose vaccines from the federal government next week. DeSantis has said the flow of vaccines from the federal government has been stagnant and the state needs more to meet the increasing demand from residents. He said the state has been receiving about 266,000 doses per week but has the capacity to administer more. At a White House briefing Monday, press secretary Jen Psaki pushed back against DeSantis' comments criticizing the federal government, saying Florida has only administered about half of the vaccines it has been given.
No. 2 - Miami-Dade County launched a new phone number for making COVID-19 vaccine appointments Tuesday and released a limited number of appointments.
The phone number - 305-614-2014 - began accepting appointments at 2 p.m. Appointments can also be made at miamidade.gov/vaccine. The new number was set up to make it easier for vaccines to be distributed more efficiently to seniors 65 and older, county officials said. The county is also opening a new vaccine distribution site at Miami Dade College North Campus this week, and will reopen the vaccination site located at Zoo Miami. All county vaccination sites are by appointment only.
No. 3 - A Broward County doctor has been arrested after he was accused of sending explicit messages and nude photos of himself to a 13-year-old child, authorities said.
Stewart Bitman, 64, was arrested Tuesday morning on three counts of transmission of material harmful to a minor and one count of solicitation of a minor, Broward Sheriff's Office officials said. Authorities said Bitman, a resident of Parkland, sent a number of sexual text messages and nude photos of himself to the teen in April. Detectives believe Bitman knew he was communicating with a minor, and while attempting to solicit victims, he portrayed himself as a teenage boy, authorities said.
No. 4 - The Broward Teachers Union’s fight to secure work-from-home orders for about 1,100 teachers seems to have ended with an arbitrator’s decision.
The BTU filed a lawsuit against Broward County Public Schools, demanding those teachers with health concerns be allowed to keep special accommodations which were granted in October. The district said only the most seriously ill teachers, about 600, would be allowed to teach from home as the rest were needed in the classroom. The arbitrator sided with the district. But the arbitrator also ruled that principals are now required to provide documentation justifying their rejections of accommodations for teachers. To hear why the teachers remain concerned, click here for the story from NBC 6 education reporter Ari Odzer.
No. 5 - People who live on the 400 block of Northwest 203rd Street in Miami Gardens say for the third time in four months, they are dealing with flooding on their street.
The homeowners say the Vista Lago construction project is causing a number of problems for them, including structural cracks on their homes and loud noise. The Miami-Dade Water and Sewer Department says Tuesday's break was a natural break and the Department repaired it in less than five hours. Residents say they’ve had enough of the back and forth and simply want solutions to live in peace. To hear why they say they’ve had enough with this problem, click here for the story from NBC 6 reporter Laura Rodriguez.
No. 6 - Weatherwise, morning fog will give way to the warmest day of the week in South Florida - but a cold front will be dropping those temps in the coming days. Keep your NBC 6 app handy for push alerts on any severe weather as well as First Alert Doppler 6000.