Wednesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Hurricane supplies flowing off store shelves
The rush is on for bottled water, non-perishable food, batteries, fuel and any other hurricane season supplies that were not purchased prior to the season’s start June 1. As Tropical Storm Dorian headed for Florida, long lines at gas pumps and grocery store shelves devoid of water were becoming more frequent sights. Bottled water is the hottest item. Supermarkets have been restocking shelves as quickly as possible but the demand has been so high that one Publix in Cooper City is just leaving pallets of water at the front of the store. More from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
How the Home Depot’s stolen tools are fueling Florida’s drug trade
Organized retail crime cost retailers $777,877 for every $1 billion in sales during 2017, according to the National Retail Federation. That’s up from around $450,000 in 2015. In Florida, state and local governments lose up to $1.6 billion in taxes per year to stolen goods, according to estimates. Some of the top organized retail theft hubs in the country are in the Sunshine State. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Fighting for survival, the MDX toll agency just doubled rebates for some drivers
Drivers who pay the most to the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority are set to see much larger rebate checks later this year as the toll agency fights Tallahassee to survive. Meeting for the second time since a Circuit Court judge reinstated them on Aug. 9, MDX board members on Tuesday approved a steep increase in the payouts for the roughly 54,000 drivers eligible for end-of-the-year rebate checks. More from the Miami Herald.
Downtown Orlando’s Church Street project to get 2nd tower, hotel
Lincoln Property Company will bring a second hotel to its Church Street Station project in downtown Orlando, according to a report in GrowthSpotter. The project was revealed in a new master plan filed with the city of Orlando. Lincoln is wrapping up construction on the first tower at the corner of Church Street and Garland Avenue, which is anchored by SunTrust bank and has Orlando’s first AC Hotel. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
Split court refuses to revisit major pot case
A split appeals court on Tuesday refused to grant the state’s request to revisit a decision that could revolutionize the way medical marijuana operators do business in Florida. Instead, the 1st District Court of Appeal asked the Florida Supreme Court to decide whether the state’s “vertical integration” system of requiring licensed operators to grow, process and distribute cannabis and derivative products runs afoul of a constitutional amendment that broadly legalized medical marijuana in Florida. More from the Lakeland Ledger.
'We don't mess around': Hertz Arena's new owner pushes major renovations
Naples businessman David Hoffmann closed the deal to buy Hertz Arena and the Florida Everblades hockey club last Thursday. When arena and team president Craig Brush arrived at work Monday, all of the luxury suites already had been ripped up.
"If you need any proof that David Hoffmann works fast ...," Brush said Wednesday.
"We don't mess around," Hoffman said.
» More from the Fort Myers News-Press.
End of an Era
Last sawmill in Pinellas County cuts its last board after 50 years
Julie Pauley is used to hearing that annoying buzzing, and squeaky shrill of the sawmill from her house nearby. But now that the sawdust has settled at Axley Bros. Sawmill after 50 years, she said it’s “eerie” to envision life without being annoyed by that same screeching sound. “I used to say to Ron (her husband) ‘put some oil on that thing’," Pauley, 61, said. "But now that I don’t hear it anymore, it’s like dang; little things like that you don’t think about until now.” It was literally her life.
» Read more from the Tampa Bay Times.
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