Thursday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Coronavirus Florida: State leaders face hard choices as virus spreads
The land of beach vacations, theme parks and retirees could be uniquely vulnerable to coronavirus, forcing Florida officials soon to confront some hard choices. Travelers spread the virus, and Florida is an epicenter for international travel thanks to its beaches and warm weather, with 126 million visitors in 2018. Older people are especially vulnerable to the virus, and Florida has one of the largest and oldest overall populations in the nation. More from the Ocala Star-Banner.
Public construction in Florida could require sea level study
Public construction projects in Florida's coastal areas could soon require a study on how sea level could affect them, under a bill sent to Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday. The bill unanimously passed by the House would require a sea level study before public construction projects using state money can begin in coastal zones. Read more from the AP.
Column: Why Floridians deserve a living wage
Floridians working for the minimum wage just got a raise in January. The hourly wage went from $8.46 to $8.56 an hour! Wow — an increase of a dime! Someone working 40 hours a week full time in 2019 earned $17,596.80 a year. This year they will earn $17,804.80 — a difference of $208, or $4 per week. That’s barely enough for a gallon of milk. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Clearwater cybersecurity firm elevates pair of executives to co-president role
KnowBe4, a leading provider of security awareness training and a widely used simulated phishing platform, has promoted two top executives to a co-president role. CFO Krish Venkataraman and Chief Revenue Officer Lars Letonoff will retain their current responsibilities in addition to becoming co-presidents of the rapidly growing, privately held firm, which is valued at $800 million and posted revenue growth of 54% in the fourth quarter of 2019 compared to the fourth quarter of 2018. More from the Business Observer.
General admission canceled to Grand Prix of St. Petersburg; race could be canceled altogether
General admission attendance at this weekend’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg IndyCar race is canceled due to ongoing concerns surrounding coronavirus, Mayor Rick Kriseman announced at a Thursday morning news conference. And the race weekend, which culminates in the IndyCar race on Sunday, may be canceled altogether. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Fraud at the center of lawsuits against California cannabis company, executive for allegedly inflating financial projections to lure $1.2 million in loans
A prominent Florida law firm has filed a trio of lawsuits against a high-profile California marijuana company, alleging a scheme to defraud $1.2 million in still-unrepaid loans and shining a light on the dark side of the burgeoning legal marijuana industry. The litigation may have some caveat emptor value for those looking to enter Florida’s developing cannabis businesses. [Sponsored report]
Out of the Box
World’s largest drive-in movie theater could land in Florida
The five-screen Florida theater, dubbed the ‘Lighthouse 5,’ would not only be the largest drive-in movie theater in the world – a claim he had verified by the Guinness Book of World Records – but an eventual destination complete with camp and RV grounds, restaurants and shops.
» More from the Florida Times-Union.
Tupperware’s four-month search for a new CEO has come to an end. Tupperware Brands Corp. appointed Miguel Fernandez as CEO on March 12. The Orlando-based manufacturer of kitchen appliances and food storage products began searching for a permanent top executive after its previous CEO stepped down late last year amid declining sales figures and share prices.
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