Tuesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today.
Editor's note: The "Florida business owners" story, a survey by PNC Financial Services, will be available on Thursday, April 5.
Florida health: Collier County drops out of top spot
Collier County has lost its top ranking as the healthiest county in the state, slipping now to the fourth healthiest, according to an annual report by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Collier was the healthiest in the state for 2010 and 2011, and it is hard to stay in the top, public health officials say. In addition, the counties that rank healthier, St. Johns, Seminole and Sarasota, had been very close in the prior years to being ahead of Collier, according to Deb Millsap, spokeswoman for the Collier County Health Department.
Investment Sounding Board
L. Scott Merritt, Senior vice president/investment director of Florida PNC Wealth Management says:
"Our preference is high-quality, dividend-focused, large-cap stocks."
AutoNation reports 15 percent rise in March sales
Fort Lauderdale-based AutoNation, the country's largest automotive retailer, on Tuesday reported a 15 percent jump in retail sales of new vehicles in March compared to a year earlier.
AutoNation said it sold 25,489 new vehicles in March, with sales of U.S. brands up 26 percent for the month to 7,991 units.
For the quarter, AutoNation's new vehicle sales rose 13 percent from last year, one of the biggest gains since the recession.
[Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Carbon fiber a key ingredient in Melbourne music store's high-tech piano
The piano business has hit few high notes in recent years, but a Melbourne piano store is hoping to make beautiful music with the new carbon fiber piano it is helping develop. In an international effort, Atlantic Music Center is researching the Phoenix piano technology with Steingraeber & Sohne, the German piano maker, and both are working with the designs of piano engineer Richard Dain of Hurstwood Farms Pianos in Kent, England. [Source: Florida Today]
COLUMN: Outlawing legal businesses would cost jobs, tax revenue
Electronic game promotions are, according to Florida law, not a form of gambling and their operators pay all required local, state and federal taxes, including state sales taxes.
There is no shortage of real crime and illegal activity in our state that already occupies our law enforcement. There is no need to create more criminal activity by claiming that these businesses, after legally operating in our state for years, are suddenly illegal just to allow them to be prosecuted.
[Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Out of the Box