What you need to know about Florida today
A roundup of what interest groups, lawmakers and the governor are seeking this year, including:
» Corporate Tax Cut — Gov. Rick Scott has proposed raising the exemption on corporate income taxes from $50,000 to $75,000, a move that he says would help cut taxes for another 2,000 businesses.
» Higher Ed —The Board of Governors is seeking $118 million — equivalent to a 15% tuition increase — that will be tied to performance goals for the state’s 12 public universities.
» Incentive Funding —Space Florida is requesting $10 million for its annual budget plus another $10 million dedicated for a financing fund to help attract and grow space-related businesses in the state.
The delayed effect of the expiring payroll tax cut prompted Florida’s consumer confidence to drop one point in February to 74, according to a monthly University of Florida survey. However, consumer outlook could grow even gloomier if massive federal spending cuts required by a process known as sequestration takes place in March. [Source: UF News]
Hoping to convince lawmakers to make significant reforms on the politically thorny issue of property insurance, a business group has released an interactive map showing legislators how many of their constituents are covered by Citizens Property Insurance. More from the Miami Herald and AIF.
If you export your goods or services around the world and have used a federal government program or assistance to get there, the U.S. Small Business Administration and Visa Inc. want to see your story. "Small businesses are key in Florida’s manufacturing and exporting, comprising 95.8 percent of the state’s exporting firms and responsible for producing 67.1 percent of the state’s total exports," said SBA South Florida District Director Francisco “Pancho” Marrero. “Businesses need to tell their story to inspire others." [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
We all know Floridians like to partake in a bit of beer every now and then, but the industry as a whole brings in a lot of money in the state. Florida’s beer distributors have an annual economic impact of about $3.2 billion, according to a new report from the National Beer Wholesalers Association. [Source: Jacksonville Business Journal]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Trader Joe's in Winter Park? New retail center raises hopes for luring grocer
Winter Park commissioners have approved a retail development on the shores of Lake Killarney that will include a new home for Ruth's Chris Steakhouse and a grocery site that — just maybe — could attract a Trader Joe's.
› FAU earns Florida's first special Alzheimer's center license
A Boca Raton adult day center is the first in Florida to receive a new license certifying it has advanced qualifications for Alzheimer's and dementia patient care.
› Five-star news for Miami-Dade hotels
After a long dry spell with no five-star hotels to brag about, Miami-Dade now has two. The Mandarin Oriental, Miami on Brickell Key and Acqualina Resort & Spa in Sunny Isles Beach, both previous four-star winners, each earned an upgrade on the Forbes Travel Guide’s Annual Star Awards.
› Appeals court sides with St. Joe in investor case
A federal appeals court has rejected a securities-fraud lawsuit against the St. Joe Co., once Florida's largest private landowner, whose holdings shrank in value during the real-estate crash and recession.
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