February 20, 2020

Friday's Afternoon Update

What you need to know about Florida today

| 2/7/2020

Deregulate it? Florida lawmakers aim to boost employment by cutting licensing requirements

There’s a plan afoot in the Legislature that would make it easier to enter everyday professions, including barbers and makeup artists, along with more specialized jobs like harbor pilots, safety inspectors and even certified public accountants. A proposal (HB 707) from state Rep. Paul Renner, R-Palm Coast, to review occupational licensing requirements for nearly 100 professions is one committee away from the House floor. It sailed through two committees with nary a 'no' vote. More from the Tallahassee Democrat.

Space Coast bases will change names to reflect Space Force

The Space Coast's two Air Force bases will soon change names to reflect their connections to the newly minted Space Force branch of the military. Patrick Air Force Base and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station will become Patrick Space Force Base and Cape Canaveral Space Force Station within 30 days, 45th Space Wing Commander Brig. Gen. Douglas Schiess said during his "State of the Installation" briefing early Friday. More from Florida Today.

Florida Trend Exclusive
Brightline to begin construction this year on Las Vegas-California line

As Brightline/Virgin Trains USA makes weekly announcements about road closures while building its link between Orlando and south Florida, could it also break ground this year on its new Las Vegas-to-Southern California passenger rail line? In a simple sentence in a news release about “carbon neutral” in February, Brightline noted it would begin construction this year on the Las Vegas-California line. More from Florida Trend.

Window manufacturer PGT Innovations lobbying Florida lawmakers for tax break

One of the nation’s largest manufacturers of hurricane-strength windows is lobbying the Florida Legislature this spring to pass new tax breaks meant to spur more sales of its products. PGT Innovations Inc., which rings up more than $700 million a year in window and door sales, wants Florida lawmakers to exempt impact-resistant windows from the state’s sales tax. More from the Orlando Sentinel.

At Cape Canaveral, Blue Origin's water tower is one of the tallest in the world

Half a dozen heavy-duty cranes pierce the horizon above Cape Canaveral's Launch Complex 36, clear visual cues of the work being done by Blue Origin teams to prepare the pad for upcoming rockets. Just below their tallest points, the skeletal forerunner of a massive hangar and processing facility is also taking shape, designed to process New Glenn rockets before they roll out to the pad. More from Florida Today.

Out of the Box
St. Augustine guests take to the seas in ‘boat-els’

 For those with the sea legs for it, an overnight stay on a 45-foot yacht might be just the kind of something different they’re looking for. And with St. Augustine virtually surrounded by water, short-term boat rentals are on the increase on platforms like Airbnb. Other hosting sites like Vrbo also give visitors the chance to book a watercraft for one or more nights (with the stipulation that it stays anchored to the dock).

» More from the St. Augustine Record.

 

Florida History
From Burdines to Eckerd Drugs — some of Florida’s lost businesses

floridaFlorida has had its share of homegrown, iconic businesses, such as Burdines, which dubbed itself “The Florida Store.” William Burdine, a former Civil War prisoner from Mississippi, opened his first store in Miami in 1898. In 2003, it was announced that Burdines would become Macy’s/Burdines, and by 2005, it just was Macy’s. Read about more Florida businesses that have come and gone.

» Read more from the Florida Times-Union.

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