August 23, 2014

Monday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 1/13/2014

› SpaceX may pick Texas over controversial Merritt Island launch site
In the long-running battle between spaceships and scrub-jays, the birds appear to be gaining the upper wing. For more than a year, the state has led a controversial effort to build a launchpad inside the Merritt Island National Wildlife Refuge, where the Florida scrub-jay lives with at least 15 other species that federal authorities consider threatened or endangered.

› Four years after the earthquake, Haiti looks to turn disaster into promise
As Haiti marks the fourth anniversary Sunday of the tragedy that left more than 300,000 dead and 1.5 million homeless, one haphazardly built community, born out of the disaster, is in the midst of a rebirth. And many are concerned that this rebirth is more a throwback to the country’s history of disorderly construction instead of the planned, quake-resistant communities that were envisioned.

› Hobby Lobby's religious convictions aren't for sale
The first clue that Hobby Lobby isn't your typical retail business is a sign at the front door saying the craft store is closed on Sundays "to allow employees time for family and worship." Once inside, other clues dot the shelves, from the large selection of religious crosses to the decorations quoting biblical verses. The faith-based subtleties are backed by conviction.

› Southwest Florida job market tight as contractors few and far between
Ben Brignol entered his plumbing apprenticeship with B&I Contractors in 2009 when Southwest Florida’s construction jobs market was a frozen wasteland. Four years later, it’s a different world: Contractors facing a sudden flood of work are raiding each other’s job sites and recruiting as far away as North Dakota.

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How to Do Florida: Crabbing on Tampa Bay
How to Do Florida: Crabbing on Tampa Bay

How to Do Florida host Chad Crawford joins Tampa Bay legend Gus Muench, of Gus' Crabby Adventures based in Ruskin, for a day's work hauling traps and then a rewarding crab dinner.

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