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Tuesday's Daily Pulse

Gov. Scott is urged to call Medicaid special session

Pressure is mounting on Florida Gov. Rick Scott to call a special session to end the Legislature's impasse on Medicaid expansion. U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson and the 14 Democratic members of the Florida Senate sent separate letters Monday making the request, following House Democratic leader Perry Thurston's request for one Friday. [Source: Times/Herald]

Related:
» No medicaid deal: Florida businesses may be hit with fines


Florida Trend Exclusive
Toni Jennings is a 'Florida Icon'

Toni Jennings
Toni Jennings, former lieutenant governor and legislator, chairman of Jack Jennings & Sons, Orlando » Full story

» There are not many places in central Florida that I can’t drive down a street and see a building we built at some point. We’re not real big. We have 25 employees. We used to have a lot of craftsmen who did the work themselves. Now we just manage and subcontract almost everything. This is our 65th year in business.

» My first campaign slogan, because I came from the construction industry, was: ‘Build government better, not bigger.’

» Read more...


Federal appeals court: Florida can't bar firms with ties to Cuba

A federal appeals court on Monday upheld a ruling that struck down a Florida law prohibiting the state and local governments from hiring companies with business ties to Cuba. The ruling continues to block the 2012 law from taking effect. [Source: Miami Herald]


Space Florida budget increases, includes space tourism marketing

The aerospace economic development agency known as Space Florida is getting strong support from State Lawmakers. The agency budget has been increased following Florida's Legislative session. Space Florida is touting success at the legislative level after its 2014 operating budget of $10 million has been approved. The group says it shows development of the state's aerospace industry is a priority. [Source: Bay News 9]


Senate passes online sales tax bill

The Senate aimed to help traditional retailers and financially strapped state and local governments Monday by passing a bill that would widely subject online shopping — for many a largely tax-free frontier — to state sales taxes. [Source: AP]


ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Jacksonville University to launch business doctorate
Jacksonville University will begin offering a doctorate in business administration next year, with the university expecting the program, in the Davis College of Business, to have an initial class of 12 students.

› Florida work release centers about to get electronic monitoring for inmates
Florida is poised to make significant changes to privately-operated work release programs now that lawmakers have agreed to beef up security and limit the size of the centers. Tucked into the state budget are three paragraphs that provide $3.8 million for electronic monitoring of inmates.

› Oviedo moves toward major facelift by creating new urban center
Sprawling suburban neighborhoods define Oviedo today, but city officials are looking toward a new, urban image for tomorrow. A well-planned jumble of multi-story commercial and retail buildings would rise in several densely developed city centers.

› FIU researchers develop new pathway to brain for medicine
Stumped for years by a natural filter in the body that allows few substances, including life-saving drugs, to enter the brain through the bloodstream, physicians who treat neurological diseases may soon have a new pathway to the organ via a technique developed by a physicist and an immunologist working together at Florida International University’s Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine.


Go to page 2 for more stories ...

› Citrus Bowl will be mostly new after renovation
The work that starts soon on Orlando's Citrus Bowl is technically a renovation, but when the dust settles in just less than two years, about 80 percent of the stadium will be brand new.

› Young business delivering healthy returns
After experiencing the ill effects of an unhealthy lunch hour on the call center he ran at the time, Scott Harris hired a chef to cook healthy lunches for his employees. Results were great — small portions of healthy food increased productivity — and the entrepreneurial wheels started turning.

› Tampa International pep rally celebrates tourism, new airside
Roger Dow broke down the impact of tourism on the American economy like this: 33 international travelers visiting this country generates one job here. "Every plane that lands," Dow said, "can bring up to nine jobs with it." Those were the kind of factoids that made Dow, president and CEO of the U.S. Travel Association, the ideal speaker to kick off National Tourism Week at Tampa International Airport on Monday morning.

› Rafool Brothers of Winter Haven Embark on Peach Business Venture
The Rafool family knows about greening. Brothers Christian and Brandon spent years growing citrus, struggling with the citrus greening, a serious disease of citrus caused by a bacteria that causes yellowing of leaves and shoots that turn it yellow. So when they had the opportunity to do something different, it sounded just peachy.