The monthly unemployment rate holds almost mythical importance as a barometer for the health of the U.S. economy. But what if it’s not telling us what we thought? Economists still view the monthly jobless rate – 7.2 percent in September – as an important guidepost, but many question whether it tells the whole story. [Source: McClatchy]
These should be heady days for Florida Democrats. As they gather to talk, plan and party at their 2014 campaign kickoff in Orlando this weekend, they've got momentum from the debt-ceiling battle in Washington and a Republican governor with low poll numbers, experts say. The problem is, they're still waiting on candidates — and money. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Several projects aimed at fixing Florida’s water quality problems are on their way to getting approved by Congress. Even though federal water bills are supposed to pass every two years, this bill is the first in five years. The $6 billion bill authorizes a lot of important water projects in Florida. [Source: WGCU]
» Water projects flow despite tea party
According to IBM, the company has entered into a partnership with the Fort Lauderdale PD to integrate new data and analytics tools into everyday crime fighting. The new projects will use pattern recognition and anomaly detection tech on existing records like 911 calls, crime records, and building permit activity. [Source: Fast Company]
State regulators approved the construction of a third major natural gas pipeline Thursday that will increase Florida's capacity by 20 percent at a cost of $3 billion. The unanimous vote by the five member state Public Service Commission clears the first of two major hurdles for the new system that is projected to come on line in 2017. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Nationals claim Space Coast Stadium overdue for fixes [Florida Today]
Brevard County officials have been trying to persuade the Washington Nationals to remain in Viera for spring training but condition of Space Coast Stadium is at the center of problems between the team and the county.
› Marlins under investigation for federal wage violations [Miami Herald]
Two Major League Baseball clubs – the San Francisco Giants and Miami Marlins – are under investigation by the U.S. Department of Labor for possible federal wage law violations.
› Amazon warehouses don't end online sales-tax fight [Orlando Sentinel]
The confirmation by Amazon.com that it will build a pair of huge distribution centers along the Interstate 4 corridor means that sometime in the next two years Floridians will have to start paying sales taxes on purchases from the online retail giant.
› Hot burger chain aims for expansion [South Florida Business Journal]
Burger 21, a fast-casual hamburger concept founded by the owners of The Melting Pot, has signed a new franchise agreement in the Pompano Beach area.
» Partnerships and Collaborations: Winning Recipes for Restaurateurs
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› South Florida leaders press for American Airlines merger [Miami Herald]
South Florida’s business and political leaders are pressing the Obama administration to let American Airlines merge with US Airways. Miami-Dade’s top chamber of commerce, tourism bureau and economic development agency joined a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder that asks the Justice Department to end its effort to block the merger.
› Medical marijuana push hits key stretch [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
The campaign to legalize the medical use of marijuana in Florida is reaching a critical juncture. The effort is still well short of the number of valid voters' signatures needed before a referendum on a constitutional amendment can be held next year. Still, supporters say they're on track.
› South Florida housing among least affordable [South Florida Business Journal]
South Florida is among the least affordable places in the U.S, for housing, according to a study by Interest.com, a subsidiary of Bankrate.com.
› AutoNation reports record results on surging service [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
The Fort Lauderdale-based company said net income reached $92.6 million, up 13 percent, and revenue jumped to $2.5 billion, up 14 percent, in the third quarter compared to a year ago.