October 24, 2020

Thursday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 9/17/2020

Florida’s lagging census response rate could cost state billions in federal funding

With two weeks before counting is scheduled to end for the 2020 census, the U.S. Census Bureau reports Florida ranks 43rd in the nation in response rate, with a projected 13 percent – or about 2.5 million – of the state’s estimated 22 million residents not tallied. At risk for Florida in a census undercount is up to $200 million a year in federal population-based funding and an outside shot at qualifying for a third additional congressional seat. [Source: The Center Square]

SpaceX set to launch another batch of Starlink satellites

SpaceX is set to launch the next batch of 60 Starlink satellites atop a Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy Space Center on Thursday. The launch is the 13th Starlink mission for SpaceX so now the company will have more than 750 of the orbiting satellites in place, about 6% of its approved plans to get 12,000 of the 570-pound satellites flying around the globe in an effort to provide cheap internet and fund the company’s bigger plans to eventually colonize Mars. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

How Bloomberg’s $100 million Florida bet may shape campaign

Billionaire donors have long played a central role in supporting both parties. Yet no one has proposed pumping in so much cash to support a presidential campaign in a single state. Bloomberg’s allies say the investment is in line with his longtime strategy in business and politics: to make the most impactful investment, based on the best data, at the right time. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Florida’s top regulator promising stricter enforcement of bars

Happy hour has taken on a whole new meaning for Florida bar and brewery owners. On Monday, bars in the state were able to reopen their taps, as long as they operate at 50% of their facility’s indoor capacity. During the three weeks bars were allowed open in June, the state relied on complaints it received and then sent agents to investigate for violations. [Source: WJXT]

Judge to review new state pact for Deloitte, which built unemployment ‘jalopy’

A battle over whether Deloitte Consulting LLP should receive a major state Medicaid contract is ready to start playing out before an administrative law judge. The technology contract, which could be worth $135 million, has drawn scrutiny because the state Agency for Health Care Administration decided to award it to Deloitte this summer amid an uproar and litigation about problems with an online unemployment-compensation system that the company helped develop. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

CSX is powered to perform

CSX is redefining freight rail with technology solutions that support on-time delivery, first-class customer service and a seamless shipping experience across our far reaching network. Backed by a record of strong performance, CSX’s forward-thinking railroaders are taking customers to new levels of efficiency and growth – safely moving your shipments with greater reliability, speed and sustainability. [Sponsored report]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Florida buys 11,000 acres from citrus company for land preservation
The state of Florida has purchased nearly 11,000 acres from a citrus company for land preservation. Fort Myers-based Alico Inc. announced Friday that the state’s Florida Forever land conservation program purchased 10,702 acres (4,331 hectares) of its land in Hendry County for $28.5 million. The publicly-traded company is one of America’s largest citrus producers.

› Miami-Dade puts new airport in Homestead onto agenda
After years of negotiating, it’s time to make a deal to use Homestead Air Reserve Base land for Miami-Dade County aviation purposes, according to Commissioner Dennis Moss. Commissioners are to decide Oct. 6 whether to OK his resolution to direct Mayor Carlos Giménez to “expeditiously effectuate a joint use agreement with the United States of America to allow for a fixed-base operator” at the base.

› Lennar Corp. exceeds third-quarter projections with $5.9B in revenues
Lennar Corporation, one of the largest home builders in the U.S., has exceeded its projected revenues for the 2020 third quarter by 6.1%, with revenues of $5.9 billion. The report, which was released Sept. 14, shows net earnings of $666.4 million, or $2.12 per diluted share, over $513.4 million net earnings, or $1.59 per diluted share over the same period last year.

› Carnival Cruise Line announces 2 more ships leaving fleet
Carnival Cruise Line announced another two ships leaving its fleet in the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic shutdown. Carnival Fascination, which had recently sailed out of Puerto Rico and Carnival Imagination, which sailed from California, are being sold for scrap, the line announced Wednesday. This follows the July announcement of the sales of Carnival Fantasy and Carnival Inspiration.

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In case you missed it:

Florida Trend Video Pick

Rare, two-headed snake found in Palm Harbor home
Rare, two-headed snake found in Palm Harbor home

A family in Palm Harbor recently found a rare creature in their home – a two-headed snake. FWC researchers said the phenomenon is named bicephaly – an uncommon occurrence that happens during snake embryo development. When two monozygotic twins fail to separate, it leaves the heads conjoined onto a single body.

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