Friday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
At 4 percent, Florida's unemployment rate is again lowest in a decade
In August, the state’s unemployment rate dropped again to 4.0 percent, the lowest in more than a decade. More than 22,000 private-sector jobs were created during the month. Among major industries, construction again gained the highest number of jobs over the year across the state — 35,000. See the full news release from the Department of Economic Opportunity. Also read more at the Tampa Bay Times and see full statistics on employment here (PDF).
After Wilma, bills were pushed to ensure nursing homes had emergency AC. The bills were killed.
In the aftermath of 2005’s Hurricane Wilma, Florida lawmakers approved laws to protect motorists at risk of getting stranded on the interstate, and residents of new high-rises who can’t climb stairs. Proposed at the same time: a bill that would have required some nursing homes to have generators to protect frail elders from the ravages of heat and dehydration. That bill died, due in part to heavy lobbying from the long-term care industry, who objected to the price tag. More from the Miami Herald.
» Florida governor orders removal of nursing home from Medicaid program after eight died
» 39 Florida nursing homes still without power
» Should the Florida legislature pass a law to ensure nursing homes have emergency AC? (quick poll)
Twelve percent of Floridians don't have health insurance
New analysis from WalletHub looked at the uninsured rates for 547 U.S. cities and broke them down by age, income level and race. Florida's uninsured rate is 12.54 percent, which places the state at #46 overall, or in the top 5 states for number of uninsured. More findings from WalletHub, here.
Gov. Rick Scott remains unsure about climate change after Hurricane Irma
Gov. Rick Scott is again weathering criticism over global warming in the wake of Hurricane Irma, and won't say if he believes man-made climate change is real. In not taking a position on climate change, Scott’s responses to questions about climate change have remained markedly steady for years. The only major difference between recent comments to reporters and his statements before his 2014 reelection is that he no longer says, “I’m not a scientist.” More from Politico.
Florida teams resume playing in Sunshine State after Irma
A distraction from storm cleanup this weekend could be found in watching or attending a sports game. There will be Major League Baseball, NFL and Top 25 college football games played in Tampa, Gainesville and Jacksonville. The Buccaneers, Rays, Jaguars, No. 22 South Florida Bulls and 24th-ranked Florida Gators all host games after their seasons were disrupted by the massive storm. More from ABC news.
Port in a Storm
Housing 700 linemen... in a theater?
In the midst of one of the largest disaster power outages in the nation, one problem that Duke Energy had was -- where do hundreds of linemen spend the night? The answer is - at the Mahaffey Theater in downtown St. Petersburg. The theater posted this on Facebook:
It might look like a sleepover party here at the Mahaffey, but it’s actually so much more. We’re proud to host Duke Energy & over 700 linemen from across the country as they work tirelessly to get the power restored in the Tampa Bay area.
» Click to enlarge the image.
» Go to the Mahaffey Theater Facebook page.
Halloween horror -- and fun -- are underway
We may be a month and a half from the actual Halloween holiday, but it's never too early to scare up some fun -- and profits. Tonight, the 27th edition of Halloween Horror Nights opens at Universal Orlando, complete with nine haunted houses, five scare zones, and two stage shows. Busch Gardents Howl-o-Scream begins September 22. Disney's Mickey's Not-So-Scary Halloween Party began August 25. But before you attend the Disney party, best to read Disney's official costume guidelines.
In case you missed it: