Reubin Askew, one of the most popular and effective governors in Florida history and a fiercely determined advocate for tax reform, racial equality, managed growth and ethical government, died early Thursday in Tallahassee. He was 85. More at the Tampa Bay Times, the New York Times and the AP.
» Florida Icon: Reubin O'D. Askew (In his own words: A one-on-one interview from 2006.)
For the second month in a row, Florida job creation is slowing down, according to a regional employment report released Wednesday. Payroll processing company ADP estimated that Florida added 10,840 private sector jobs last month, slightly less than January and far shy of the pace two months ago when the state churned out 25,000 new private sector jobs More from the Tampa Bay Times and the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
Florida's vast workforce of low-wage service workers and middle managers could see their paychecks swell because of President Barack Obama's directive this week to expand who can benefit from overtime pay. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
Florida Gov. Rick Scott is backing a bill that would allow qualified Florida students to pay in-state college tuition even if they are in the country illegally. Scott says the measure would also prevent state universities from being able to raise tuition rates above the amount annually set by the state Legislature. [Source: AP]
In early January, as Florida's new $63 million unemployment website continued to struggle to pay claims on time, state lawmakers considered taking action. Now in the second week of the 60-day legislative session, lawmakers are backing away from using their oversight powers to intervene with the Department of Economic Opportunity and the CONNECT project. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Citizens reaches settlement over sinkhole damage [AP]
Florida's state-run insurer says it has reached a settlement to allow homeowners to receive professionally recommended repairs for sinkhole damage.
› New College wants to offer 'Big Data' graduate course [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
New College of Florida has long championed the unusual learning environment it provides for its undergraduates. A new proposal could allow New College to expand that curriculum by giving the college the freedom to offer its first-ever post-graduate course.
› Sweet 16 selected for Cade Museum Prize [Gainesville Sun]
The prize -- funded by the Community Foundation of North Central Florida -- is designed to help a Florida individual or company take a potentially viable commercial product or idea to the next level.
› Warren Buffett agrees to buy Miami's WPLG-10 [AP]
Warren Buffett's company says it has agreed to acquire a Miami-based TV station from Graham Holdings Co. in exchange for sharply reducing its stake in the company that once owned The Washington Post.
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› Proposal would limit Medicare coverage for some Florida drug testing [Times/Herald]
Attorney General Pam Bondi is fighting a plan that would limit Medicare coverage for some drug testing in Florida and could allow accidental deadly drug combinations.
› Bank of America boosts Florida small business loans by $500M, now hiring [South Florida Business Journal]
Bank of America grew its small business lending in Florida by $500 million in 2013 and it plans to build on that this year by hiring more bankers.
› Marine artist Guy Harvey to design hull artwork for Norwegian Escape [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Well-known marine artist and conservationist Guy Harvey has been tapped to design the signature hull artwork for Norwegian Cruise Line’s largest ship launching in October 2015, the Miami-based cruise operator announced Wednesday.
› Proposed changes could reduce manatee protections in Miami-Dade [Miami Herald]
So protected are the gentle sea cows that roam the waters off Biscayne Bay that regulations have thwarted the marine industry’s growth and frustrated developers’ plans to build widespread docks for recreational boaters. At least that’s the argument from boaters and industry groups seeking to loosen restrictions.