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Friday's Afternoon Update

Florida back on track with Race to the Top

A year after Florida was put on warning for falling behind on its $700 million Race to the Top grant projects, U.S. Department of Education officials say the state has regained its momentum. A Department of Education report released Friday concludes nearly all projects are on track with Florida's amended timelines. [Source: AP]

Landlord Inc.


Big investment firms are buying Florida single-family foreclosures in bulk, expecting to profit twice: First by renting out the homes and then by reselling them in a few years.

» Landlord Inc.

Gay mega cruises pack $7 million economic punch

Greater Fort Lauderdale's reputation as a top destination for gay travelers is paying off. On Saturday one of the world's largest gay cruises to sail this year will depart Port Everglades with roughly 3,700 passengers aboard. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Florida CFO: Reform $50B contracting system

Florida CFO Jeff Atwater has requested the Legislature make reform of the state’s contracting system, which spends $50 billion a year, a priority in the upcoming session. [Source: Gulf Coast Business Review]

» FRIDAY PREVIEW: Coming next week to FloridaTrend.com:

  • Small Business: Where Are They Now?: A look at what happened to the Florida companies that made Inc. magazine’s list of fast-growing companies and our own Florida Small Business issue a decade ago.
  • Web Chat: Investing in Florida Real Estate: Are single family homes a profitable investment strategy? Read the story here and submit your questions at any time.
  • Florida Dining: South American Tour: Once upon a time, dining on Latin American food in Florida meant Cuban and Mexican. Today, the Latin table stretches all the way down the Southern Hemisphere.

» You'll find all these stories first on the Daily and Afternoon Pulse e-mails.

Editor's Column
Remembering Bill McBride

mark howardNo one who spent more than 5 minutes with Bill McBride could have any question about what was important to him — families, children, good works. At Holland & Knight, McBride combined business strategy and philanthropy, championing pro-bono efforts, particularly on children’s issues, that he felt would make the firm more valuable to the communities it served. Florida Trend Executive Editor Mark Howard discusses McBride's significant legacy and what it means to Florida.

» Full Column