What happens in Washington, won't stay in Washington. Should the nation go off the fiscal cliff, every American business will be watching its wallet with uncertainty. The travel industry - Florida's top economic driver - would surely feel the impact. Read more from WPTV and the South Florida Business Journal.
» Struggling homeowners could lose big tax break
» Fiscal cliff talks threaten Central Fla. charities
» Obama back in Washington; no deal in sight on fiscal cliff
» Economy to grow in 2013, but fiscal cliff drags down progress
» Lawmakers set up 11th-hour bid on "fiscal cliff"
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From the South Florida rock in its concrete slab to the roof trusses milled in Yulee, Greg and Jennifer Gent's new house may be the only one in Central Florida built entirely with U.S.-made products. The Gents set out earlier this year with the goal of constructing a house in Belle Isle that would serve as a model for an industry that has long used products mined or manufactured in other countries. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Don't be mistaken: you can't compare the beach crowd in Daytona Beach in December with what you'll find in six months. Still, there's a healthy number of people walking the beach in varying degrees of dress. You'll even see one or two people actually dive on in to the chilly Atlantic. But for the majority of visitors who are here from the north, they're finding it difficult to understand why people think it's cold. [Source: Central Florida News]
Even though the price of gasoline has been declining for months, 2012 is on track to be another record-breaking year for prices at the pump, according to the auto club AAA. With less than a week to go in 2012, the yearlong average price for a gallon of regular gas is $3.61 nationwide, or 10 cents more than the annual average price in 2011. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Family-owned businesses remain optimistic about revenue growth in 2013, but economic uncertainty and public policy concerns are hindering hiring, according to the 2013 Family Enterprise USA survey. [Source: South Florida Business Journal]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Nonprofit with state contracts pays its top exec $1.2M [Times/Herald]
A nonprofit company that holds two dozen state contracts to care for troubled juveniles in Florida pays its chief executive more than $1.2 million a year in salary and benefits, most of it courtesy of taxpayers.
› Vehicle chargers generate no profit in Lee County [Fort Myers News-Press]
Lee County officials say they weren’t in it for the money when they had three electric vehicle chargers installed in downtown Fort Myers. And that's a good thing.
› KSC Visitor Complex unveils $16 million entrance [Florida Today]
The Visitor Complex officially opened the $16 million entrance Thursday, a week after arriving guests first began gathering to take pictures in front of the 75-foot long, 30-foot tall blue granite fountain and a globe-shaped NASA “meatball” logo in front of it.
› Florida ranks 31st for percentage of college grads [Orlando Business Journal]
New figures from the U.S. Census Bureau show that Florida ranks 34th for its percentage of population 25 or older with a high school degree and 31st for its percentage of population with college degrees.
Go to page 2 for more stories ...
› SeaWorld files to sell stock in IPO [Orlando Sentinel]
SeaWorld is going public. Orlando-based SeaWorld Parks & Entertainment filed plans Thursday to sell up to $100 million worth of public shares. The company would operate under a new name, SeaWorld Entertainment Inc., and trade under the symbol "SEAS."
› Jacksonville proposes cutting firefighter pensions [Florida Times-Union]
The city has proposed pension changes to the Jacksonville firefighters union that are substantially the same as those offered to the police union two months ago.
› Scott says port strike could devastate Florida economy [AP]
Gov. Rick Scott warned Thursday that a looming strike involving port dockworkers on the East and Gulf coasts could have a devastating effect on Florida’s families and its economy.
» Related: Potential strike won't have much impact on Port Canaveral
› Businesses try to sell before potential tax increase hits [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Business owners who want to sell their companies are scurrying to get them sold before the end of the year because of potentially higher tax rates in 2013.