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Schools are still a month away from the being in session, but health officials are already reminding parents to make sure their child’s vaccinations are up to date. Sherry Smith, the Director of Student Services for the Santa Rosa County School District says the disctrict's school had a 98% vaccination rate for the last school year

While he’s still mulling over a run for the U.S. Senate, Cong. Jeff Miller collected about $677,000 in the second quarter of this year for his campaign coffers.

According to papers filed with the Federal Election Commission, the funds were raised through campaign and leadership PACs. The $677,000 total is higher than what was amassed during the last election cycle when he won a seventh term to the House.

“It’s very rare that you have a seat open up where there is no clear front runner,” said Miller. “This is the case, so we’re looking at it.”

The executive committee of the Boy Scouts of America has unanimously approved a resolution that would end the organization's blanket ban on gay adult leaders. Meantime, local troops are watching and waiting to see what happens next.

BSA President and former Defense Sec Robert Gates, speaking to the national convention in May, said with dozens of states passing employment equality laws, the Boy Scouts could face one or more court challenges to drop its ban on gay leaders. He added they do not want to go there.

Photo via Flickr// More Good Foundation
https://flic.kr/p/8PQ7Cj

Florida’s Department of Education is out with a video, asking residents to mentor a student in their local school district. Such programs are alive and well in the western Panhandle.

The “Why I Mentor” video highlights what just one hour each week can make in helping a child succeed in school and, ultimately, in life. In Santa Rosa County, Superintendent Tim Wyrosdick says they orchestrate a mentoring program in a couple of different ways.

Pensacola Police Department

When it meets in regular session Thursday evening, the Pensacola City Council is expected to approve the promotion of David Alexander to Chief of Police.

Chip Simmons is retiring next month after 29 years in the department, the last five as Chief. In that post, he’s overseen significant reductions in crime year-over-year, and the lowest crime rate on record. The PPD also became the first in the Panhandle to equip officers with body cameras: ten of them to start.

Sandra Averhart

Renowned southern writer Harper Lee is being celebrated this week, with the release of her new book Go Set a Watchman. Barnes & Noble stores in Pensacola and Fort Walton Beach got things going on Monday - the eve of today’s release - with Read-A-Thons featuring Lee’s classic novel To Kill A Mockingbird.

The Eleanor J. Johnson Youth Center in Ft. Walton Beach has been open for over twenty years, although many in the community are unaware of it.  However, a University of West Florida marketing class is hoping to change that.

nasa.gov

After traveling across three billion miles of space the past decade, New Horizons is ready for its close-up – of Pluto.

If all goes according to plan, the probe will pass to within about 8,000 miles of Pluto’s surface, completing Man’s snapshots of the nine planets of our solar system. This mission is one of many firsts – the fastest spacecraft ever launched; the farthest destination ever explored, the first mission to Pluto in a binary planetary system, and the first mission in NASA’s New Frontiers program.

Although it’s still over 6 months away, Pensacon 2016 has been making news recently. WUWF’s Bob Barrett spoke to Pensacon Chairman and co-Founder Mike Ensley for an update on the third edition of the fan convention.

Highlights:

University of West Florida

In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses economic developments in Europe, with analysis of the economic crisis in Greece.

“We’re on the verge of seeing a Greek exit from the European Monetary System,” Harper said as the Greek government was holding an emergency meeting to discuss making another bid for financial help from the European Union.

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