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Digest

pre-k signups zipping

By TIMES WIRES
Published October 21, 2006


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It took an entire school year, including the summer, for Florida to get 100,000 4-year-olds enrolled in its prekindergarten program last year. This year: nine weeks. Voluntary pre-K surpassed the mark on Thursday, with 101,136 children attending classes statewide. Pinellas County participation is up 18 percent, while Hillsborough's has grown by 11 percent.

Quick response is the idea

The Florida National Guard plans to launch a special disaster response team in Pinellas Park within the next two years. The 22-member unit would specialize in terrorist attacks, environmental disasters and other emergencies across the state. The unit, which is funded by Congress, would be located at the C.W. Bill Young Armed Forces Reserve Center. The Florida National Guard already has a similar unit in Starke.

Wanted actor on the set in Africa

Beleaguered action-film star Wesley Snipes, accused of trying to defraud the IRS of more than $11-million, is wanted by U.S. authorities. A spokesman for the U.S. Attorney's Office in Tampa suggested Thursday that he is a fugitive from justice because he hasn't turned himself in. But his whereabouts aren't exactly a state secret. He's shooting a movie in Namibia, Reuters reported Friday. Gallowwalker, stars Snipes as a Wild West gunslinger whose victims return as vengeful zombies.

Correction

Melanie Shepherdson is the Natural Resources Defense Council attorney who urged the Federal Aviation Administration to reconsider the new Panama City airport site. A story Friday gave an incorrect last name.

[Last modified October 21, 2006, 01:33:36]


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