Public projects financed by private companies are nothing new in Florida, but a law signed by Gov. Rick Scott in late June expands the realm of possibilities for business and government. A ramp-up of public-private partnerships — nicknamed P3s — is expected to boost the economy and generate construction jobs. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
A new analysis of a long-term survey of high school students provides an early glimpse at ways their attitudes shifted in the first years of this most recent economic downturn. Among the findings: Young people showed signs of being more interested in conserving resources and a bit more concerned about their fellow human beings. [Source: AP]
Chances are you’re patting yourself on the back for locating in a state that has both great beaches and no state income tax. Not so fast. Florida ranks fourth nationwide in combined federal, state and local average cell phone tax rates, according to a recent study by the Tax Foundation. [Source: Palm Beach Daily News]
When you walk into a big box store you can do your clothes, household and grocery shopping in one place. When you walk into a big electronics and appliance store you can outfit your entire home. Now this one-stop shopping idea has expanded to home buying. [Source: Fort Myers News-Press]
Florida’s formula for grading its schools — hailed as a model nationwide — may be rewritten again this year to include a controversial “safety net” that would keep grades from dropping more than one letter. But the 11th-hour wrangling over the “accountability formula” is drawing attention far beyond Florida. [Source: Miami Herald]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Renegade marketing group leads members to business success [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Rebellion has never been so profitable. A group of business owners are renouncing traditional marketing strategies for more revolutionary tactics and their companies are flourishing, all under the guidance of serial entrepreneur Andrew Cass and his marketing and networking group, Renegade South Florida Entrepreneurs.
› Warner University's Degree Isn't Only for Farmers [Lakeland Ledger]
Warner University's Agricultural Studies Program is not just on track to open in the fall; it already has a full head of steam. Warner is offering a four-year degree in "diversified agriculture" with courses that span the field from animal and plant production practices, law, business and marketing.
› First Coast tourism officials refocusing efforts to attract Europeans [Florida Times-Union]
Orlando and South Florida have long been the big players in international travel, but First Coast tourism officials are no longer willing to sit on the sidelines.
› Marino Foundation helping with jobs [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
If finding a job is tough for any young adult in South Florida these days, imagine the challenge for those with autism and other developmental disabilities. The Dan Marino Foundation is starting a program to reduce those hurdles.
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› Medical info goes paperless at NCH Healthcare System [Fort Myers News-Press]
The remaining health care workers still using pen and paper to order medical treatments within Collier County’s largest hospital system will fully enter the computer age Monday.
› As IRS cracks down on The Villages, Disney World watches [Orlando Sentinel]
The federal government recently cracked down on a lucrative tax break used by the developer of The Villages, the sprawling community northwest of Orlando that has been called Disney World for retirees. That could be an ominous sign for the real Walt Disney World.
› An ‘energy problem solver’ [Gainesville Sun]
Arlene Zavocki Stewart has a simple description for her work: She removes barriers so builders will use energy-efficient and green products. “Home builders call me their energy problem solver,” said Stewart, president of AZS Consulting.
› NexLube bringing the next generation of oil recycling to Tampa [Tampa Bay Times]
The oil will come in used. Dirty. Polluted. Drained from crankcases all over Florida. When it leaves, it will be like new. Clean. Clear. Safe. The purest form of oil there is. The process is called oil re-refining. It is environmentally sound. Practical. Profitable.