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Monday's Daily Pulse

Business groups endorse Internet sales tax legislation

Business advocates have gotten behind a study that says Florida would see robust job growth if “e-Fairness” tax laws were adopted to close loopholes that allow many out-of-state retailers to avoid collecting sales taxes when Floridians make purchases online. More from the Tampa Bay Times and the News Service of Florida and read the study here.

Ports around the South prep for canal growth

Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, South Carolina and Texas have invested hundreds of millions in improving port facilities with the hope of growing local economies. In Florida, officials have invested millions at the port of Miami on a tunnel to divert inland ship traffic around the city and on customs facilities to reduce the time it takes to process cargo. [Source: AP]

Walk-in clinics sprouting up to meet consumer needs

With just months to go before the individual mandates from the Affordable Care Act kick in, walk-in clinics are seen as one of the medical niches with the potential for rapid growth. Part of that is because of the health insurance opportunities offered by the Affordable Care Act, but also because some patients might decide to pay the tax penalty and not carry insurance but still seek medical care. [Source: Florida Today]

Cities seeing green from new red-light laws

While most studies show few crashes at intersections with red-light cameras, many cities haven’t seen the money they expected, and at least one is several thousand dollars in the hole. Now, some cities plan to use new changes in Florida’s red-light camera laws to wring more money out of strapped camera programs. [Source: Miami Herald]

Even as stock market soars, financial planners urge balanced investing

The stock market has soared to record highs this summer, while bonds have suffered a rocky ride. So how should investors react? Many Central Florida financial planners are telling clients to maintain an age-appropriate balance of stocks and bonds — even though bonds suffered a historic sell-off in May and June. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]


› Blue Apron food-delivery service expands into Florida
Founded in New York, the year-old service is available in 30 states and plans to go nationwide by year's end. It starts delivering to Florida on Monday at blueapron.com, where customers can buy a week's worth of preset meals. Meals cost $10 each per portion — or $120 a week for a family of four.

› Gainesville taking steps to become more business-friendly
Business people have long complained that onerous regulations in the city of Gainesville make it more difficult than it should be to improve old properties and open new businesses.

› New healthcare model emerges in Miami
Federal reform creates incentives for physicians, hospitals and other providers to keep patients healthy and out of the hospital — tying pay to benchmarks for quality and lower cost.

› Tampa Bay area suddenly basking in big economic wins
Listen carefully and you can hear a collective Ouch! from Tampa Bay business leaders. They are pinching themselves, making sure they are not dreaming amid the recent bonanza of very real economic development coups realized in the past days and weeks, along with some strong possibilities of landing some pending deals.

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› Spanish or English? The dilemma of the booming Hispanic TV market
Since the 1980s, two networks — based in Miami — have been the dominant players in U.S.-based Spanish-language broadcast, battling for the top positions (currently held by Univision.) And with the U.S. Hispanic population projected to double by 2060, advertising revenue is expected to far exceed the $6.3 billion currently spent on advertising to Hispanics.

› Brevard tourism industry faces identity crisis
For more than two decades, Brevard County’s tourism officials have been marketing the region to the world as “Florida’s Space Coast.” But that all could change. They now are considering pushing Cocoa Beach as the focus of marketing, particularly outside of Florida.

› New Gainesville Chamber official aims to create jobs in all areas
Susan Davenport was not looking to leave the Austin (Texas) Chamber of Commerce when Tim Giuliani called to recruit her to his management team. But she was intrigued by his vision for economic development as president and CEO of the Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce. And the more she looked into what Gainesville had to offer, the more it piqued her interest.

› Poll: St. Petersburg needs new ideas for Pier
A Tampa Bay Times, Bay News 9 and WUSF Radio poll suggests many St. Petersburg residents want to send city officials back to the drawing board to find another plan that would carry on the tradition of a public pier.