Tuesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Florida Supreme Court declines to take up conservation fight
In a blow to environmentalists, the Florida Supreme Court on Monday refused to take up a dispute about how money can be spent under a 2014 constitutional amendment aimed at land and water conservation. The dispute centered on allegations by backers of the constitutional amendment that the Legislature improperly used money that was targeted for conservation purposes. But the 1st District Court of Appeal last year sided with lawmakers. More from Southeast Ag Net.
Orlando's simulation industry flourishes amid coronavirus
In the middle of the economic downturn, the unintended consequence of fighting the coronavirus pandemic, one sector of Central Florida's economy is still flourishing. “In this time of upheaval, where we see a lot of areas shrinking, it is fortunate that we see this one industry grow," said Laureen Martinez, with the Orlando Economic Partnership. "We’ve seen some industries within the Orlando region that have been less affected, and even seen some job gains. One of those areas is in the technology and simulation industry.” More from Bay News 9.
No HLB found in commercial citrus groves in North Florida since 2018
Since 2018, there have been no huanglongbing finds in commercial citrus groves in North Florida, and there have still been no disease detections in Georgia groves, according to Citrus Industry. In North Florida, HLB was detected in groves in Live Oak in Suwanee County and Perry in Taylor County in 2018, reported Xavier Martini, a University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) researcher. More from Fresh Plaza.
Disney ruling could save hotel companies millions in taxes
Walt Disney World and the lodging industry lobby just won a sweeping legal victory that could save Disney and other big hotel owners millions of dollars in taxes. Ruling in a years-long lawsuit between Disney and Orange County Property Appraiser Rick Singh, an appellate court determined that Singh’s office improperly inflated the value of Disney’s Yacht & Beach Club Resort, a luxury hotel with an annual property tax bill of more than $4 million. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
Florida powers up 149MW of solar
Two photovoltaic plants in Florida totalling 149MW have entered commercial operation. Harmony Solar Energy Center in St. Cloud and Taylor Creek Solar Energy Center in east Orange County near Wedgefield each have a capacity of 74.5MW. The plants are part of the Florida Municipal Solar Project, a partnership between the Florida Municipal Power Agency (FMPA) and 16 Florida public power utilities. More from ReNewsBiz.
Out of the Box
South Florida carnival drive-thru brings deep-fried Oreos, funnel cakes for July 4 weekend
Summer is carnival season, and not even a pandemic will keep people from indulging in deep-fried Oreos. That’s the gamble behind this weekend’s Fair Eats Drive-Thru, a three-day bonanza of artery-clogging carnival food rolling into the South Florida Fairgrounds July 3-5. Call it a carnival for the social distancing set, but without the stomach-churning Gravitron or the rigged midway games. Visitors – without leaving their cars – can order 14 menu items for curbside pickup.
» More from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
Miami almond milk company is helping Americans ditch the dairy
Conventional wisdom says to stick with what you know best — especially when starting your own business. For Tony Jimenez, the founder of JOI, a nut-based milk product company, that meant his own health. Jimenez and his family had a history of high blood pressure and high cholesterol, and he had been making his own plant-based milks for about a decade.
» Read more from the Miami Herald.
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