As the housing market recovered last year, so did the practice of home flipping. The real-estate information service RealtyTrac found that 156,862 U.S. homes were bought and quickly resold last year. That’s 16 percent more than in 2012 and 114 percent more than in 2011. More from the Columbus Dispatch, the Miami Herald and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
The prospect of a major overhaul of Florida's gambling laws or approval of Las Vegas-style casinos this legislative session faces growing odds despite promises from GOP legislative leaders last fall that the issues were a priority. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Still waiting to see whether you'll get a share of the Florida Hardest Hit Fund's $350 million in mortgage principal reductions? Join the club. In the four months since a flood of 25,000 underwater homeowners applied for the state-distributed relief, only 750 homeowners have had their loans paid down, state officials said. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
When you lead a nonprofit, where the end game is about making the community a better place to live, the workload can be immense and the emotions intense. It’s a big responsibility — and one that people in their 20s and 30s aren’t rushing to undertake. [Source: Miami Herald]
Florida legislative leaders are pushing a big education agenda this year that features revamped higher education funding proposals and an overhaul to the state’s embattled school grading formula. [Source: WFSU]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Florida’s Medicaid reform pilot is saving money, UF study finds [UF News]
Health care plans in the Florida Medicaid Reform Pilot project have done a better job of controlling costs than Florida’s traditional Medicaid program, according to a new University of Florida study.
› With Test Decision Soon, ACT Launches New Florida Website [StateImpact Florida]
Testing firm ACT has launched a website to advertise and educate the public about its new exam as the Florida Department of Education decides which test will mostly replace the FCAT.
› Orlando among cities vowing to cut greenhouse gas emissions from buildings [AP]
Mayors from 10 U.S. cities took aim at their skylines Wednesday, pledging to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their buildings. While power plants are the nation's No. 1 carbon emitter, it has long been known that businesses and homes also contribute to carbon dioxide pollution.
» Orlando is one of 10 cities picked for $9 million energy project
› Taxi tech upgrades coming to Miami-Dade County [Miami Herald]
Old technology — but new to many Miami-Dade County taxis — is coming to local cabs. An overwhelming majority of county commissioners has signed off on sweeping legislation requiring all cabs to take credit cards and install SunPass transponders, GPS devices and digital security cameras.
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› Big names join forces in Jacksonville-area real estate [Florida Times-Union]
Prudential Network Realty officially took on a new name Wednesday. It’s now Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Network Realty.
› Tampa officials unveil draft plan to redevelop area west of Hillsborough River [Tampa Bay Times]
Hang around Mayor Bob Buckhorn, and he'll soon say he wants to make the Hillsborough River the center of downtown Tampa and not its western edge.
› Firm sets up new laser broadband in downtown Miami [South Florida Business Journal]
A Miami-based company has set up a new system of laser optics on rooftops in downtown Miami with the goal of providing a higher-capacity and more reliable service.
› Job fair to help veterans, military spouses [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
If you are a veteran or military spouse trying to get back into the civilian workforce or improve on your current job, a coalition of Southwest Florida groups has an event coming up with you in mind.