Monday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
Florida revenues plummet after the coronavirus shutdown
Florida's economy is taking a hit because of the coronavirus, according to a revenue report released by the state Senate president on Friday. Republican Senate President Bill Galvano sent a memo to senators saying the state’s revenue in the month of April was down about $780 million from what was originally predicted. That includes sales taxes that were about $695 million below predictions. [Source: AP]
Brace for insurance shock: windstorm premiums are soaring in Florida again
Home insurance is getting a whole lot more expensive, a wallet punch for residents of a state that already has the highest property insurance rates in the nation, not to mention a staggering unemployment problem from a surging pandemic. Major insurance companies are raising wind-storm premiums in Florida as much as 33 percent and dropping tens of thousands of customers, signaling an end to the nearly decade-long lull in prices. [Source: Miami Herald]
Business groups worry about ‘patchwork’ mask rules
Business groups say a “patchwork” of local face mask ordinances across Florida is creating confusion for store owners and customers. Several cities and counties from the Panhandle to South Florida have approved requirements for face coverings to be worn in public settings. But other local governments have stayed out of the issue, and Gov. Ron DeSantis has refused to issue a statewide mandate. More from the Panama City News Herald and WUSF.
Despite virus spike, N.B.A. is ‘very comfortable’ with Florida plan
Despite what Adam Silver, the N.B.A. commissioner, described as an “increased” level of concern over a significant rise of coronavirus cases in Florida, the league moved forward on several fronts Friday by formalizing its plans to restart the 2019-20 season at Walt Disney World near Orlando. [Source: NY Times]
Families plead for Florida to find safe way for nursing home visits
With no end in sight to the coronavirus lockdown at Florida’s senior-care facilities, family members and their advocates are pleading with Gov. Ron DeSantis to find a safe way to allow limited, in-person visits with loved ones — as 17 other states have already announced plans to do. The move is critical to keep the emotional well-being of elderly, frail residents from deteriorating further, supporters claim. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Changing lives through medicine
With the help of the Florida Lottery Bright Futures Scholarship, Lauryn Brown, raised in Tallahassee, enrolled at Florida State University at age 16 and graduated in December 2019 with a degree in interdisciplinary medical sciences. Lauryn’s goal of a career in medicine — “to change the way people go about their lives” — is coming into focus. [Sponsored report]
The 2020 Cade Prize for Innovation will award $50,000 to entrepreneurs, inventors, researchers, and pre-seed & early-stage companies in Florida, Alabama and Georgia that have an original idea with significant market potential.
Entries are being accepted now through August 1, 2020 in entry categories that address key technology clusters and critical issues impacting the southeast: Agriculture/Environmental, Health Care/Bio, IT/Tech, Energy, plus a Wild Card category. Click to learn more!
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Attorney General announces $700,000 for Floridians victim to COVID-19 scams
Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody announced Friday more than $700,000 is now available to help you recover from scams related to the coronavirus pandemic. Florida remains under a state of emergency since Gov. Ron DeSantis issued the declaration back in March. The attorney’s general office says they received more than 7,000 reports of stores price gouging and of scammers trying to steal money.
› South Florida beaches to close for July Fourth weekend
The mayors of Broward and Palm Beach counties said Sunday their beaches would be closed. Miami-Dade County made its announcement on Saturday. After the other counties decided to close for the holiday weekend, Palm Beach County Mayor Dave Kerner told the South Florida Sun Sentinel it would be “highly irresponsible” to keep beaches open. Later, Kerner said on CNN that the county would follow the lead of Broward and Miami-Dade. Palm Beach County will issue an official order with specifics on Monday, he said.
› Pinellas tourism leaders fear more COVID-19 fallout, cuts tourism marketing budget
Just as it looked like Pinellas County’s tourism industry might be rebounding, local business leaders are bracing for another COVID-19 crash. As the elected officials, hoteliers and members who comprise the county’s Tourism Development Council met Friday to discuss Pinellas’ tourism development budget for the upcoming year, the day’s grim news made its way into their conference room on Ulmerton Road.
› Mayor to bankruptcy judge: South Florida benefits if Miami Herald is locally owned
As a decision nears in federal bankruptcy court on the future ownership of the Miami Herald, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez has asked a judge to consider the public interest — and the vital role of local journalism — when weighing the fate of the Herald’s parent company.
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