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Dateline Florida

A look around the state

By Times staff and wires
Published October 18, 2006


USF rents a rant for a whopping $35,275

More proof that there's no such thing as free speech on college campuses: Ann Coulter, the best selling conservative author famous for her biting criticisms of "godless liberals" and World Trade Center widows, will be paid $35,275 to speak at the University of South Florida in Tampa on Thursday. While her 7 p.m. speech is free and open to the public, student fees will cover Coulter's costs. But she's not the only one pulling down the big bucks. Consider a couple of others in the University Lecture Series from the left side of the political spectrum: Aaron McGruder of Boondocks comic strip fame ($26,800) on Nov. 20 and civil rights leader Jesse Jackson ($22,900) on Jan. 18.

Police to target biker showoffs

Tens of thousands of motorcyclists are expected to converge on Daytona Beach this weekend for the 14th edition of Biketoberfest, and police hope better behavior will mean fewer deaths. Five people died last year, so police will be cracking down on burnouts, wheelies and speeding, the Orlando Sentinel reports. "We want to make sure everyone has a safe Biketoberfest," said Daytona Beach police Sgt. Craig Buth. "And if that means issuing tickets, so be it." Tourism officials expect up to 100,000 visitors between Thursday and Sunday.

Apple at core of USF effort

Speaking of USF, it has entered into a partnership with Apple's iTunes University to give students 24/7 access to video and audio from professors, joining the likes of Stanford and UC Berkeley. USF will first offer content from USF Health and the College of Education, and later may expand to other colleges, schools and departments.

Overheard

"He has been instrumental in instilling a culture of preparedness."

Jeb Bush, on Max Mayfield, the director of the National Hurricane Center in Miami, who was honored by the governor and Cabinet on Tuesday as he prepares to retire from the post he has held for seven years.