Monday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
As COVID-19 shreds Florida’s finances, new estimate says clamping down on corporate tax avoidance could raise nearly $500 million
Tax-reform advocates attempted unsuccessfully over the years to persuade Florida lawmakers to switch to a new system — called “combined reporting” — which would force companies to file a single tax return for their entire business and restrict their ability to move money around simply to avoid state taxes. But some groups are starting a new push for combined reporting now amid a COVID-19 pandemic that has devastated Florida’s tourism-dependent economy and shredded the state budget. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
Own a storefront business? You need to get online. This group can help.
The coronavirus pandemic has likely been the most difficult period of a retail or storefront business owner’s existence. A Miami-based group teaching online marketing skills wants to help. BizHack is now offering a free, five-day course that teaches small business owners how to get their businesses noticed online. The curriculum includes skills for increasing brand awareness, tools and tactics for finding new customers, recapturing past customers and increasing sales during COVID. More from the Miami Herald.
Tampa Bay area angel investing group evolves, plans for future deals
Chasing what works has led to an evolution for Bridge Angel Investors. Since 2017, Bridge, a Sarasota and Manatee-focused group-funding entity, has invested in four companies. The group continues to seek more opportunities — for investing both members’ money and mentorship energies. A new partnership that could increase Bridge’s impact is also potentially in the organization’s future. More from the Business Observer.
Lot J versus The Landing: Could entertainment district succeed where downtown Jacksonnville mall failed?
A year after the city demolished the mostly-deserted Jacksonville Landing and covered the downtown site with grass sod, City Council faces a vote on steering up to $233 million in city investments and incentives for turning an asphalt lot near the football stadium into a development containing a dining and entertainment district. Like the Landing when it opened in 1987 with high expectations of it being a magnet drawing people back to downtown, the proposed Lot J development, located in the sports complex a mile from the Landing site, is based on pulling more visitors into downtown. More from the Florida Times-Union.
Miami hotels have reason to celebrate. Thanksgiving pilgrims are heading this way
Miami hotels are expecting an influx of visitors this week that will bring their occupancy rates to the highest level since the COVID-19 pandemic torpedoed the tourism industry in March. Traditionally Thanksgiving week has been a highlight for Miami-Dade hotels, as tourists escape from cooling temperatures elsewhere. This year, amid the pandemic, some hotels still expect to sell out thanks to an influx of visitors from the Northeast and Florida. More from the Miami Herald.
Canadian NBA team picks Florida as home base for upcoming season
Tampa Bay sports teams are on a hot streak, with a Stanley Cup championship from the Lightning, a World Series appearance from the Rays and a buzz around the Buccaneers, courtesy of signing iconic quarterback Tom Brady. Now the region has another victory: The NBA’s Toronto Raptors — the team won the league championship in 2019 — announced it will play the 2020-21 season at Amalie Arena in Tampa Bay, home of the Lightning. The team made the decision after failing to come to an agreement with Canadian officials to play games in Canada, due to the pandemic.
Sarasota architect wins two design awards
Architect Jonathan Parks, of Sarasota’s Solstice Planning and Architecture, won two design awards from the American Institute of Architects Tampa Bay Chapter at its Celebrate Design awards reception Nov. 6. Parks' LEED Platinum residence, Element House, received the first ever Sustainability Award and the mixed-use project Rosemary Square was recognized with the Merit Award for excellence in design. Both are in Sarasota.
» Read more from the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
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