Friday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today.
Set to rocket off early Saturday, SpaceX’s Dragon spacecraft faces a daunting series of systems tests and complicated maneuvers before it will be given the green light to berth at the International Space Station. The bar is raised sky-high, and for SpaceX, the idea is to show the U.S. and its 15 international partners that the Dragon poses no threat to the station or the six people living and working aboard it. [Source: Florida Today]
The unmanned craft will deliver food, water and clothing. This launch could symbolize the future for Florida's space business, as industry leaders hope low-cost space launches will bring more commercial satellite business to the United States. If all goes well tomorrow, this could also signify the start of a new Florida attraction: space tourism.
Video animation from NASA below:
Sen. Marco Rubio has been interviewed on Fox Business and a transcript was released. Here's a piece of that transcript:
“JPMorgan lost money because they made a bad decision. Businesses lose money all the time," Rubio said. "And you know who they’re accountable to? Their shareholders. I guarantee you the shareholders weren’t happy about the decision that they made or why it happened. But I’m not sure even the existing regulations the president has advocated for could prevent businesses from making bad decisions and losing money. I don’t think we can afford a set of regulations in this country that send out the message that America is not the right place to do business."
[Source: Tampa Bay Times]
Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown wants to change the way incentives are doled out.
The Legislature passed a bill this spring that allows Jacksonville to abolish the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission. Mayor Alvin Brown plans to create a Downtown Investment Authority to revitalize the city's urban core. The task of citywide development will become the job of the Office of Economic Development, which reports to the mayor's office. The business-executive group Civic Council is helping steer the reforms, along with Brown's new Office of Public-Private Partnerships, headed up by Renee Finley of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, an "executive on loan" to the city. Story continues here.
Related, from Business Florida:
» A business portrait of Northeast Florida, including Jacksonville, Palm Coast, St. Augustine
Florida has become known for the weird. Highly charged court cases, nudist colonies and a bounty of tanning salons seem to arise in the Sunshine State. And unfortunately, cut-off jeans and flip-flops are not in short supply here. But in the midst of the humidity and sunburned tourists, you'll find Tampa. Yes, you will still find humidity and sunburned tourists, but also a diverse Tampa Bay area community that includes Greeks, Cubans and Scientologists. The area consists of the cities surrounding Tampa Bay. Four bridges cross this large expanse of water linking the bay area together. Profile continues at CNN.
Related, from Florida Trend:
» A business portrait of Tampa and Hillsborough County
» What is Florida? Perception vs. reality.
Only citizens can vote in Florida elections, and the state has an obligation to reasonably attempt to ensure the voter rolls are accurate. But the effort by state elections officials to identify registered voters who are noncitizens and remove them from the rolls is badly flawed and should be halted. Even if the intent of Gov. Rick Scott's administration is pure, the effect of this heavy-handed approach is to discriminate against Hispanics and Democrats and suppress the turnout of eligible voters.
[Source: Tampa Bay Times]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› UF political science professor receives $1.25 million grant from Department of Defense
The U.S. Department of Defense has awarded a University of Florida professor $1.25 million to study factors affecting political stability in the African Sahel, the region south of the Sahara Desert. The award is part of the DOD’s Minerva Research Initiative, a university-based social science research program started by former Defense Secretary Robert Gates to increase the nation’s understanding of regions and topics considered important to U.S. national security.
› U.S. education secretary urges new textbooks for Florida schools, and also raises for Florida teachers
The progress Florida has made bringing technology to the classroom is being handicapped by outdated textbooks, Education Secretary Arne Duncan said Thursday. Duncan also recommended the state pay teachers more. Florida ranked 39th in average teacher pay in 2009-10, according to the National Education Association.
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