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Friday's Daily Pulse

Federal regulation tops Florida banks concerns

Ninety-five percent of the financial institutions that responded to a survey by the Florida Chamber Foundation and CFO Jeff Atwater said that “meeting regulatory compliance requirements” would be a significant or moderate challenge over the next three years. [Source: Tampa Bay Business Journal]

» Florida banks boost small business lending
» South Florida bank deposits grow 6.1%

Related Florida Trend Content
» Big Banks Still Dominate Florida's Financial Landscape
» Disappearing Act for Some Florida Banks
» Home-Grown
» Well-Heeled

Gov. Scott talks up an economic comeback in Florida

As Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney argued the nation's job market remained in crisis, Gov. Rick Scott on Thursday praised Tampa Bay's chief executives for helping turn the economy around. "In the last 24 months, you have taken our unemployment rate from one of the highest in the country ... to, you now have 250 to 300,000 job openings every month in this state," Scott said. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

Costs for Florida Prepaid College program rise again

If you're thinking about enrolling a newborn in the Florida Prepaid College program, get ready to pay $331.59 a month for the next 18 years to fund four years of classes at a state university. That's an 11 percent increase over last year's price — an increase that officials said is tied to Florida's rising college tuition rates. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Chefs struggle with budget, monotony during food-stamp challenge

Central Florida's largest food bank — Second Harvest — recently asked a handful of the region's top chefs to survive 24 hours on just $6.67. No sampling at work. No leftovers. No handouts from friends. And absolutely no alcohol, fast food or take-out. Just $6.67 — the maximum amount the government provides for an individual on food stamps in Florida — for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The average allotment is only $4.50. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Poll: Obama, Romney a toss-up for Florida

A new poll showing President Obama and Republican Mitt Romney in a too-close-to-call fight for Florida, also has Democratic U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson building on his lead over Republican Connie Mack. Read more from the Palm Beach Post and see the Marist Poll.

See also:
Tampa Bay Times poll: Romney 51, Obama 44
» Polls show little change in swing states, despite Romney’s momentum


› JEA's InvestSmart program gives breaks to businesses that think energy smart
JEA says it has provided $3.78 million in rebates and other financial incentives to local companies involved in InvestSmart. JEA essentially pays part of the cost for the upgrades to companies and programs have been developed for small businesses or large corporations.

› Empowering women and encouraging technology startups
eWiTS, Empowering Women in Technology Startups, is a pilot program in Gainesville that was designed to open doors to women from diverse professional backgrounds and fulfill Innovation Gainesville’s initiative of making Gainesville a hub for startup companies.

› 7 of 10 largest Florida auto insurers have PIP rate cuts pending
Of the 10 largest auto insurance writers in Florida, seven companies have pending rate filings that would reduce their PIP rates by 10 percent, as required by legislation approved last spring. And six of these seven companies also filed to decrease their overall rates.

› Orange crop expected to increase 5 percent
The 2012-13 Florida orange crop is expected to increase 5 percent from last season to 154 million boxes, the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported in its initial crop estimate for the season.

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› Conflict questions arise about law firms representing HOAs, banks
Disputes pitting homeowners associations against banks that owe fees on foreclosed houses have left some questioning whether the same law firms should represent parties on both sides of the fight.

› Broward tourism bureau looks beyond the beach
Broward has long marketed itself as an affordable beach destination — and that’s not going to change in the upcoming year. But, said Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau president Nicki Grossman, it’s time for that message to expand.

› Broward doctor was paid $477,000 for 140 days work at pill mill
A Coral Springs doctor admitted in court Thursday that he wrote excessive prescriptions in exchange for cash at a Deerfield Beach pill mill. Dr. Charles Neuringer, 73, has agreed to forfeit close to $477,000 he was paid in fees and bonuses for the 140 days he worked at the now closed Coast to Coast Healthcare Management Clinic.

› Will American’s troubles affect merger talks?
The pilots union wants US Airways’ management to run a post-bankruptcy American Airlines. But there’s no guarantee the two companies will merge.