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Tuesday's Daily Pulse

Florida home sales continue upward trend

Worries over flood insurance, mortgage rates and low inventories have yet to derail Florida's housing recovery, as home sales stayed on a year-over-year growth streak last month, new Florida Realtors data show. More than 18,000 single-family homes sold statewide last month, 18 percent more than September 2012. More from the Tampa Bay Times, the Miami Herald and the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

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Legal decision could mean more liability for developers

Developers and home builders throughout Florida face potential new legal liabilities for shoddy infrastructure work after a homeowners association in west Orange County won what is being called a landmark case before the Florida Supreme Court. Full story.

Column: Specialize to find your success

If you’re starting a new business — or want to expand an existing small business — one of the best pieces of advice I can give is this: Find a niche. Find a specialty that immediately and clearly distinguishes you from the competition, and then get really good at it. [Source: Florida Today]

Environmentalists, workers seek common ground

The nation's largest labor unions are ready and willing to help fight global warming, but are cautioning environmentalists that workers need new clean-energy jobs before existing industries are shut down. [Source: AP]

While most rely on Realtors, some choose another way

A growing number of homeowners are hoping to capitalize on a booming housing market by listing properties on their own -- a replay of the "for sale by owner" phenomenon that was a major part of the last market run-up nearly a decade ago. [Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune]


› Publix offers high-end catering that goes beyond deli wraps
When Loren Lopez, an executive assistant at Plantation brokerage firm Trade Station, was recently tasked with planning an office party for 300 employees, she went to Publix, figuring she’d order some cheese cubes and deli wraps. What she got — a full-service catered affair with professional chefs and servers — impressed her, her colleagues and her bosses.

› Florida Blue Cancels 300,000 Policies
Florida Blue, the newly adopted brand for the former Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Florida, is canceling 80 percent of its current individual policies because they don't jibe with the requirements under the Affordable Care Act that go into effect Jan. 1.
» Related: Patients scramble after AARP Medicare Advantage plans drop providers

› Will stronger startups draw venture capitalists to Tampa Bay?
So far in 2013, four Tampa Bay area startups have attracted close to $30 million. That's out of $277 million committed to 34 deals across the state.

› Florida city undergoing shuffleboard revival
Christine Page, president of the St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club, knows the perception of her sport: that it's a game of days gone by, played sometimes on cruise ships, more often at a retirement home, by the elderly.

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› What Florida’s Education Commissioner Heard At Common Core Listening Sessions
The conversation about Common Core standards hit a fever pitch in Florida last week. Florida’s education commissioner, Pam Stewart, moderated three hearings about the Common Core in Tampa, Davie and Tallahassee.

› Southwest Florida shoreline will soon appear on Google Maps
Soon, people around the world will be able stroll Southwest Florida beaches virtually. It’s coming courtesy of a Google and Visit Florida photo-mapping project that documented Lee and Collier county shorelines last week.

› Poll: Florida’s likely voters divided on expanding gambling
A state-level organization known for its long-standing opposition to gambling’s expansion has released new poll numbers showing Florida’s likely voters are split on the issue.

› Arsht Center CEO talks arts, money and neighborhood change
Adrienne Arsht Center for the Performing Arts President and CEO M. John Richard is upbeat as he talks about the upcoming arts and cultural season.