Friday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
Florida in the Top 10 for economic growth in arts and culture
A National Endowment for the Arts study found Florida ranked ninth in the nation for the fastest-growing states in economic value added by arts and culture industries. In 2016, Florida arts and culture meant $35 billion for the state economy, with an annual growth rate of 7.1 percent. Overall, the arts and cultural sector contributed $804 billion to the nation’s gross domestic product. More than 5 million Americans are employed in 35 industries ranging from entertainment and performing arts to arts software and architectural services. [Source: Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
Trump backs Florida plan to import lower-cost meds from abroad
In a move sure to get attention in a 2020 battleground state, President Donald Trump indicated Thursday that his administration may approve a Florida plan to import lower-cost prescription drugs from abroad for use by residents. It's the latest flashpoint in a confrontation between the Trump administration and the pharmaceutical industry, which for years successfully has fought off importation proposals. [Source: AP]
Florida Trend Exclusive
New DOT codes turn Florida trucking industry into transportation turf war
In a little-noticed bit of bureaucracy in early February, the Florida Department of Transportation updated Florida Administrative Code 14-61, a set of rules governing the nearly 500 miles of toll roads that comprise Florida’s Turnpike System. The codes touch upon everything from tires to tolls. They also regulate the use of what FDOT refers to as turnpike tandems — two trailers hitched together behind a truck. [Source: Florida Trend]
Report: Land values in Florida rock solid
In March, Coldwell Banker Commercial Saunders Real Estate hosted its annual Lay of the Land Conference in Orlando. Each year during the conference, Dean Saunders, founder of the Lakeland-based company, releases his “Lay of the Land Report,” which provides property values based upon verified sales for the previous year. Florida’s land market values remained strong in 2018, bolstered by the nearly 1,000 people moving into the state daily and an unemployment rate below 4%. [Source: Growing Produce]
E-PASS vs. SunPass: Which is better for drivers on Florida toll roads?
Drivers on Florida toll roads have the option of using either E-PASS or SunPass transponders -- but which one is better? For drivers, the transponders are largely indistinguishable when it comes to daily use. E-PASS is issued by the Central Florida Expressway Authority and SunPass is issued by the state Department of Transportation -- but they both work on state and local toll roads. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Miramar: The crossroads for Florida, the Americas and the world
For companies looking for a city they can grow with, Miramar exemplifies a partner positioned at the crossroads of regional and hemispheric trade. Incorporated in 1955 as a bedroom community to Fort Lauderdale and Miami, Miramar today is a thriving live/work/play destination ideally suited to any growing business. [Sponsored report]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Fort Lauderdale poised to double salaries, add retirement plan for elected officials
Fort Lauderdale’s mayor and city commissioners are preparing to more than double the salaries they will get if they win re-election. They’re also planning to beef up monthly expense accounts, and add a retirement plan that would apply to politicians after the next city elections in 2020.
› Visit Orlando announces another record number of tourists in 2018
A rise in tourists from Latin America helped push Visit Orlando to yet another record number of visitors last year, solidifying the region’s position as the country’s most-visited destination. Officials with the tourism marketing agency announced Thursday that a record 75 million people visited Central Florida in 2018, a 4.2 percent jump from the previous year.
› Government agencies release endangered Florida grasshopper sparrows into wild, despite concerns
State and federal wildlife officials have begun releasing captive-bred grasshopper sparrows into the wilds of Central Florida, despite warnings from the scientist who was in charge of the captive breeding program that they may be spreading a fatal disease among the endangered birds.
› Florida Keys' first all-inclusive resort shuttering for months after devastating fire
The Florida Keys' first-ever all-inclusive resort is shutting down until the end of the year after a fire ripped through the property's main building. No one was injured in the fire, but the Beach House, which housed the resort's restaurant, bar, spa and lobby, was severely damaged.
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TABLE OF CONTENTS
An overview of the features and articles in this month's issue of Florida Trend.
Florida Trend Video Pick
A near-record 16-foot Burmese python, along with more than 50 eggs, were removed from under a house in the Florida Everglades earlier this month.
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