August 20, 2014

Monday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 12/30/2013

› School-grade divide leaves Florida parents puzzled
The year 2013 was a record-setting time for Florida schools — but in a way that may leave confused parents scratching their heads. The state’s controversial A-to-F grading system was kind to high schools, but much harsher in its treatment of the lower grades.

› Improving job market in Florida? No, just a glitchy website
Call it the Economic Miracle That Wasn't. Florida's ongoing claims for unemployment benefits plummeted to the lowest level in six years from mid October to early December. Yet rather than herald an improving job market, chalk up Florida's shrinking claims numbers instead to the troubled debut of the state's unemployment claims website, CONNECT.

› Citizens hopes clearinghouse helps insurance shoppers
Billed as a "game-changer" and a "new option" for a New Year, Citizens Property Insurance Corp. rolls out its ambitious Property Insurance Clearinghouse Jan. 27 with the mission of demonstrating to Florida homeowners the state-backed property insurer isn't necessarily their only or best option.

› Port Everglades saw passenger numbers decrease in 2013
Cruise passenger numbers dropped at Port Everglades in fiscal 2013, but the Fort Lauderdale port expects more business in the upcoming year. The port processed just over 3.5 million multi-day passengers in the year that ended Sept. 30, down from nearly 3.7 million the year before.

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Balloon sculpture at Museum of Fine Arts will blow you away
Balloon sculpture at Museum of Fine Arts will blow you away

If you've ever been impressed by a balloon animal, prepare to be blown away by a new art exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts in St. Petersburg made up entirely of balloons.

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