Friday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Florida, seven other states, investigating Facebook for possible antitrust violations
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has joined seven other states and the District of Columbia investigating Facebook for possible antitrust violations. The probe will look into whether Facebook "endangered consumer data, reduced the quality of consumers' choices, or increased the price of advertising," said New York Attorney General Letitia James in a statement. More from the Tampa Bay Times and NPR.
Florida may seek close to $200 million in federal aid for Dorian preparation
Florida wants the White House to approve federal reimbursements for the state and 24 counties to help cover costs of Hurricane Dorian preparation, shelters and evacuation measures. Gov. Ron DeSantis said Thursday he’s spoken to President Donald Trump and has directed state emergency-management staff to amend an already-approved request for federal disaster relief to include the additional reimbursements that could approach $200 million. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
» University of Florida economist says Hurricane Dorian has 'minimal' impact on Florida agriculture, citrus
» Don’t take your eyes off the tropics yet; more systems are brewing
» Are Florida’s nursing homes prepared for hurricanes?
John Morgan isn’t taking lead role in legalizing marijuana after all
Don’t count on John Morgan opening up his checkbook to legalize recreational marijuana in Florida. Morgan says he’ll support both major proposals to get marijuana legalization on the ballot in 2020 – but as a cheerleader, not with cash. The Orlando attorney, who spent millions of dollars on the successful campaign to legalize medical marijuana in 2016, remains focused on his proposed 2020 amendment that would gradually increase the minimum wage in Florida to $15. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
At budget hearing, Miami-Dade residents demand action on housing costs
One resident after another took their two minutes before a county microphone Thursday night to plead with Miami-Dade commissioners to take action on affordable housing. There’s about $645 million for housing in the budget proposed by Mayor Carlos Gimenez in July and given preliminary approval after 10 p.m. by the 13-seat board. Housing spending is up 15 percent from the current budget year, which ends Sept. 30. More from the Miami Herald.
State economists weigh costs of assault weapons ban
If Floridians approve a constitutional amendment next year to block possession of assault weapons, a panel of economists on Thursday estimated the state budget could take a $26.9 million hit in lost revenue. But the head of the Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research said the amount would likely be smaller because revenue lost in taxes from gun sales would be balanced out with other purchases that can be taxed. More from the Gainesville Sun.
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The first Skyway Bridge opened 65 years ago today. It was a triumph. Then came the tragedy.
The original Sunshine Skyway Bridge opened to the public 65 years ago today, linking the fragmented Tampa Bay region together and transforming the west coast of Florida. The $22-million Skyway stretched from St. Pete’s Maximo Point at the end of 34th Street S to Terra Ceia Island to U.S. 41 in Manatee County. At the time, it was the longest unbroken bridge in the U.S. and one of the longest in the world.
» More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Boathouse Tiki Bar & Grill
Not long after the owners and principals behind Kearns Restaurant Group built the first Boathouse Tiki Bar & Grill in Cape Coral, they knew their latest concept — in a string of multiple new dining establishment ideas — was a hit. That’s why the restaurateurs decided to build a second spot. But this time, they chose to build it at an even greater scale.
» Read more from the Business Observer.
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