Wednesday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today.
In a recently released AAA gas report, the average price for regular unleaded gas in Florida was $3.936 a gallon. Jessica Brady, AAA spokeswoman, said prices aren't expected to drop anytime soon. In fact, she said, prices are expected to rise with the summer driving season around the corner. Read more:
The Great Recession hit South Florida's blacks disproportionately hard, causing some of the worst employment and income drops in the region. In 2010, after the recession ended, 16.3 percent of blacks were looking for work compared with a 10.1 percent overall unemployment rate in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
This year saw the official opening of facilities for two government-supported enterprises on the "Research Coast" that promise to create several hundred jobs — entertainment producer Digital Domain Holdings and life science institute VGTI Florida. Every silver lining has its cloud, and in St. Lucie, which flew highest in the boom, that's home building. Full story...
Cracker Boy Boat Works, which operates service yards, has added employees. [Photo: Cracker Boy Boat Works]
Half of Americans told pollsters that they plan to spend their income tax refund on bills or other expenses -- and South Florida financial planners say they are on the right track. "You want to pay off debt to get out of debt," said Plantation financial planner Ben Tobias. "That's the first rule." [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Florida Trend's web chat on trends in Florida real estate begins this morning at 11:00. This is your chance to discuss all things real estate with Florida Trend's South Florida editor Mike Vogel and two experts:
Submit your questions now and come back at 11:00 to participate live or any time after the chat for a full transcript of the discussion.
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Nelson blames speculators for high gas prices
U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson blames speculators for driving up gas prices, and he blasted federal regulators on Tuesday for failing to rein in speculation. The price spike has set off a lot of finger-pointing in Congress. Nelson, a Democrat from Florida, is pointing at speculators and Gary Gensler, chairman of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
› Sarasota loses overnight mail delivery under Postal Service plan
For the first time in 40 years, the national and local cost-cutting plan would mean customers would lose the overnight delivery they have become accustomed to, delaying for two to three days delivery of things like medications, bill payments and Netflix DVDs.
› WellCare Health Plans whistleblower to receive $21 million
Whistleblower Sean Hellein will receive nearly $21 million for triggering a successful federal probe into Medicare and Medicaid fraud at his former Tampa employer, WellCare Health Plans.
› Miami Jai-Alai defaults on expansion loan
Miami Jai-Alai's operator Florida Gaming Corp has defaulted on the $87 million loan it received to expand Miami Jai-Alai, the company said in its annual report filed with regulators. The company had net losses for 2011 and 2010 of $21.76 million and $4.84 million, respectively, according to the annual report.
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