November 23, 2014

Tuesday's Afternoon Update

What you need to know about Florida today

| 3/25/2014

Florida consumer confidence back up to post-recession high

Retail businesses take heart: Consumer confidence among Floridians rose three points this month to 81, according to a new University of Florida survey. Chris McCarty, director of UF’s Survey Research Center in the Bureau of Economic and Business Research, said an index of 81 "is as high as we have achieved since before the recession began in December 2007." More from UF News.


Legislative roundup: Florida lawmakers mum on Medicaid expansion, and other top stories

Last year's legislative debate about whether Florida should accept the billions of federal dollars for Medicaid expansion is still viable, but this year, nobody wants to talk about it. House Republicans, who blocked the expansion in 2013, say there is no point in having the contentious conversation again. Full story from the Times/Herald Tallahassee Bureau.

 Northeast Florida 

Habitat for Humanity foreclosures in Jacksonville

st. joe
Photo: Bob Self/The Florida Times-Union

The Jacksonville affiliate of Habitat for Humanity, called HabiJax, foreclosed on 50 homeowners last year. Many HabiJax homeowners were not able to overcome job losses, medical expenses or tax and insurance increases that increased their housing outlays. (This story is part of a regional news roundup. Roundup includes businesses in the news and people to know.)

» Access regional roundup

More from Florida's Legislature:
» Mystery project may get millions from Florida [AP]
State legislators will vote today on whether to go along with Gov. Rick Scott's request to spend the money for "Project Magellan" at the Melbourne International Airport.
» Bill protecting trauma centers advances in the Florida House [Lakeland Ledger]
The for-profit HCA hospital chain would be shielded from legal attacks under legislation that advanced in the Florida House Tuesday.
» Bill to allow beer growlers in Florida gets support [AP]
A bill that would legalize half-gallon beer growlers passed a House committee.
» Even more 2014 Legislative Session here


Florida now a 'front-runner' for U.S. economy, economist says

Florida's economy in 2014 is leading the nation, despite once being a straggler in the race for economic recovery, said University of Central Florida economist Sean Snaith. Snaith said he expects the Florida economy to continue to outpace the nation as a whole over the next several years. More from the South Florida Sun Sentinel.


Changing class size limits in Florida best for students, taxpayers

Florida should revisit the class size reduction law in grades 4 through 12 to maximize the use of the state's education funding, according to a report from Florida TaxWatch. The independent analysis in "Taking A Fresh Look At Florida's Class Size Limits" finds that investing in other educational practices could yield higher student achievement than restricting money to reducing class size, and could save the state up to $10 billion over ten years. Full story and report are here.


Picasso show at the Dalí the first of its kind

"Picasso/Dalí, Dalí/Picasso" at the Dalí Museum will be the first exhibition in the world that allows a direct comparison between two of the 20th century's greatest artists. Most of the 75 works will be paintings, which will make it both a huge visitor draw and a scholarly show. Some have never traveled to the United States. The show will open in downtown St. Petersburg, Florida, on Nov. 8, 2014. More from the Tampa Bay Times.

  Op-Ed piece  

Boomers boost Florida's economy

politicianIn a special op-ed piece to the Tampa Bay Times, Jeff Johnson, the Florida state director for AARP, argues why we should be working to attract more 50-plus adults to Florida. "States such as North Carolina, Texas and Tennessee have ramped up recruitment of relocating boomers. No Florida state agency is assigned to attract relocating retirees. That last point is critical. If Florida was simply sitting out any other economic development competition, business and political leaders would be outraged. Yet because Florida has had success in the past attracting 50-plus residents, it's as though we assume they'll keep coming here forever."
» Full column from the Tampa Bay Times

» Related, from Florida Trend: Viewpoints video interview with Jeff Johnson

Tags: Daily Pulse

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What It Will Feel Like To Ride The World's Tallest Roller Coaster
What It Will Feel Like To Ride The World's Tallest Roller Coaster

Developers David and Joshua Wallack are set to build a 570-foot vertical coaster, which will be the tallest in the world, in Orlando.


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