March 19, 2018

Friday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 2/23/2018

Florida backs away from controversial water-quality standards

Two years after drafting water-quality standards that were widely scorned as weakening protections against some harmful chemicals, Florida is starting over. The Department of Environmental Protection announced without fanfare this month that it was withdrawing standards a state commission approved in July 2016 to regulate the chemicals’ presence in rivers, creeks and other bodies of water. [Source: Florida Times-Union]

Beneficial Blends

Florida Trend Exclusive
Ghee Wiz: Profile of Beneficial Blends

Inside a tidy factory near Tampa International Airport, workers package jars of coconut cooking oil and heat enormous kettles containing butter, which they’ll reduce, removing the water and milk proteins, to create ghee, a butterlike cooking fat that’s popular in India and growing in popularity in the U.S. Full story here (part of a business news roundup for southwest Florida.)

Why one Florida city is debranding itself

Most cities have brands. New York has a blocky typographic logo. Philadelphia’s logo is a graphic of the Liberty Bell, with the slogan “Life, liberty, and you.” But Gainesville, Florida, has gone in the opposite direction with its new identity: debranding, rather than rebranding. [Source: Fast Company Design]

Florida House considers work requirements for Medicaid recipients

Florida might consider imposing work requirements on adults enrolled in the state’s Medicaid program, a move some critics contend would be “cruel” for poor people who rely on the safety-net program for health care. Earlier this week, a state House panel voted 14-4 for a bill that would provide authority to request federal approval of a requirement that people in the Medicaid managed-care program provide proof of working, attending school or trying to find jobs. See House Bill 751, "Public Assistance," here. Also read more at the Jacksonville Business Journal.

Florida's worst nursing homes left open despite history of poor care, deaths

Dozens of Florida nursing homes with long records of failing to meet state and federal standards operate with little risk that regulators will shut them down. Flaws in the state's nursing home oversight threaten thousands of frail patients, said Brian Lee, former head of Florida's Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program in the Department of Elder Affairs. [Source: Naples Daily News]


Arecibo Observatory

› UCF will boost space sciences with deal to manage Arecibo Observatory
A consortium led by the University of Central Florida will soon take over management of the largest operational radio telescope in the world, the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. (The article includes video.) Also read more at the Orlando Sentinel.

› As home prices rise, Brevard County Property Appraiser works to keep costs low
With home sales prices steadily rising in Brevard County, there has been considerable discussion on the impact that has on local home values. Brevard County has approximately 330,000 parcels of real property and 50,000 tangible personal property accounts that must be valued annually.

› Tampa Bay area’s population projected to grow to 3.1 million this year
The Tampa Bay area’s population, already the largest of any metropolitan area in the state, is projected to grow from 3 million last year to 3.1 million this year, and to 3.3 million over the next five years.

› PepsiCo collaborates with Miami-based company to launch new beverage brand
In a collaboration labeled "intrapreneurial," PepsiCo and Drinkfinity, a beverage brand founded and headquartered in Miami, will bring a line of flavored drink additives stateside after a trial run in Brazil that began in 2014.

Go to page 2 for more stories ...

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St. Baldrick’s Day
St. Baldrick’s Day

Saturday is St. Patrick’s Day but since July 1999 an organization dedicated to funding research to end childhood cancer — the St. Baldrick's Foundation — co-opted the Irish celebration to come up with St. Baldrick’s Day.

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