Monday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
Florida's tight finances could spark budget battle this year
Florida legislators will kick off their annual session Tuesday with some simple math problems. More money is coming in, but a push for increased spending - coupled with years of tax cuts - means there just isn't enough to go around. Money is needed for both hurricane recovery and preparation for later this year. Florida's children's health insurance program could run out in March if Congress doesn't authorize additional federal funding. Senate President Joe Negron is optimistic, saying, "I think there's a way for everyone to achieve success in the budget arena." [Source: AP]
» Legislature 2018: Controversial issues top agenda
» Florida Gov. Scott to make final State of the State speech
» Florida lawmakers grapple with issue of sexual misconduct
» Quick poll: Which do you think is the most important topic for the 2018 Florida Legislature to address?
Florida hack exposed files of up to 30,000 Medicaid patients
Florida officials say hackers may have accessed the personal information and medical records of up to 30,000 Medicaid recipients two months ago. The agency said it "has no reason to believe" this information has been misused, but enrollees can call an agency hotline at 844-749-8327. See the news release from Florida's Agency for Health Care Administration here. Also read more at the AP and Engadget.
How many Puerto Ricans have moved to Florida? State's numbers questioned
The flood of evacuees from Puerto Rico is reshaping schools, communities and public services, but the truth is nobody knows exactly how many islanders are moving to Florida permanently. Three university professors who are studying the influx after Hurricane Maria hit the island in September are questioning figures that Gov. Rick Scott has been using. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Florida vs. Georgia water war heads to U.S. Supreme Court
The U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments Monday in a decades-old legal fight between Florida and Georgia over water flow into the Apalachicola River. Florida argues that an increase in water consumption by Georgia, including in the Atlanta area, since the 1970s is “effectively strangling the Apalachicola region. More from the Tampa Bay Times and the AP.
Florida Trend Exclusive
Publisher's column: A new Jacksonville
As Florida Trend enters its 60th anniversary year, we take a look at Jacksonville/Northeast Florida, one of the state’s first inhabited areas. Jacksonville is changing rapidly. It’s no longer the small Southern town you may recall. Read the full column by Florida Trend's Publisher, Andy Corty.
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Orlando fights for recognition as food destination
Restaurant critics, chefs and diners say Orlando deserves more recognition as a top restaurant city, if visitors would go beyond typical theme park fare to enjoy the broader flavors in the metro area.
› SpaceX launches secret satellite Zuma on 1st flight of year
SpaceX has launched a secret satellite codenamed Zuma on its first flight of the new year. The unmanned Falcon rocket blasted off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, on Sunday night, carrying the satellite toward an undisclosed orbit.
› Florida Gov. Scott to make final State of the State speech
Florida Gov. Rick Scott is giving his last State of the State speech Tuesday and there's a good chance a couple of topics will be similar to the first one he gave in 2011: jobs and tax cuts.
› Flexible jobs fill a need for South Florida companies, workers
South Florida job-seekers today not only face the best job market in a decade, but also have new opportunities with employers that are adding remote workers locally and nationally.
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