Thursday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Scott wants Obama to reimburse state for ports
Gov. Rick Scott wants the federal government to reimburse the state for tens of millions of dollars of taxpayer dollars invested in Florida's ports. Scott committed $77 million in state funding to a dredging project for Miami's port in 2011. In January, Scott asked the Legislature to appropriate $36 million for Jacksonville port improvements. More at the AP and the Tampa Bay Times.
» Cargo Opportunity
» Port of Miami: Dredging Deeper
» Gateway and Infrastructure Connects Ports to People
Florida puts 'welcome mat' back out for foreign drivers
Moving quickly to reinforce the state's tourism-friendly image, lawmakers gave final approval Wednesday to repealing a law that has caused confusion about whether international visitors need special permits to drive in Florida. The Senate voted 38-0 to approve the measure (HB 7059), which also passed the House last week. The bill now goes to Gov. Rick Scott for his signature; he has said he will sign it. More at the Orlando Sentinel and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
Miami Marlins team value rises 16 percent
Despite a horrendous season with players and fans, the Miami Marlins approach Opening Day worth more than ever, according to Forbes. The financial magazine on Wednesday released its annual estimates on the financials of Major League Baseball, and the Marlins recorded a 16 percent gain to be worth $520 million. More at the Miami Herald.
Environmental groups to sue over feds handing off endangered species duties to state
Last year, with no public hearings or fanfare, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service handed over its authority to a state agency for clearing the way for development permits that might hurt Florida panthers and other endangered species. Florida is now the only state with that authority. More at the Tampa Bay Times.
House Speaker uses Smart phones' cost to justify Florida college tuition increase
Saying Florida college students pay as much for their Smart phones in a year as their university tuition, Florida's House Speaker told state education leaders this morning that he supports raising tuition for public universities. The House revealed this week that it is proposing a 6 percent increase in base tuition for public universities in 2013-14. More at the Orlando Sentinel.
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