Wednesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
The sky’s the limit: Space Coast expects another strong year of launches in 2021
Rockets launch almost every week just a few miles north of Rusty’s Seafood & Oyster Bar in Cape Canaveral. The restaurant shakes when a spacecraft breaks the sound barrier and leaves Earth behind. Commercial space launches from companies like SpaceX, owned by billionaire Elon Musk, helped drive the Space Coast economy in 2020 despite the COVID-19 pandemic. Signs point to an even stronger 2021, especially for the private space industry. “Praise Elon,” said Rhett Fischer, the restaurant’s manager, jokingly. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
Florida’s property insurance market is ‘spiraling towards collapse’ due to litigation
Florida’s property insurance market is “spiraling towards collapse” and requires immediate attention if there is any chance of protecting the market, consumers, and ultimately, the state’s economy, according to an analysis about to be presented to the Florida Legislature. The report points a finger at the state’s “litigation economy” as the main contributor to insurance market woes— seeing it as more of a direct cause than the many weather events Florida has suffered. More from the Insurance Journal.
Doral officials may vote to give themselves pay for life
Anyone who has held Doral elected office eight years or more could soon become eligible for an elected officials retirement plan. Initially, the proposed ordinance read that those who have reached a retirement age of 55 and no longer serve as an elected official would be entitled during the remainder of their life to an annual pension equal to 50% of the elected official’s compensation and 50% of the cost of health insurance premium for themselves and their immediate families. More from Miami Today.
Florida invasive pythons could help with coronavirus vaccine
A key ingredient to helping vaccinate more Americans against COVID-19 lies deep within the Florida Everglades, according to experts. The source? Invasive Burmese pythons. Yes, you read that right. Daryl Thompson, Director of Scientific Initiatives at Global Research and Discover Group Sciences, says the species that has caused devastation to Florida's native wildlife and environment carries an oil called squalene. It's an ingredient that is used along with the vaccine to help alert the immune system to start learning to recognize the virus. More from WTSP.
What are the do’s and don’ts to get PPP funding during COVID? Free webinar to discuss
Miami business leaders are hosting a free virtual panel on Thursday to discuss what businesses can do to get their second round of Paycheck Protection Program loans. The free webinar, “Latest Round of PPP Loans: What You Need to Know to Get Funded,” will run from 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. and will answer questions business owners have about the more than $284 billion program. More from the Miami Herald.
Super Host? Bucs can become 1st to play Super Bowl at home
The Tampa Bay Buccaneers have a chance to make history at Green Bay on Sunday. If they do, it might come with an asterisk. No team has ever played a Super Bowl in its home stadium. Tom Brady and the underdog Bucs (13-5) will try to become the first to do so by winning the NFC championship game against the Packers (14-3). The Super Bowl will take place two weeks later at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa, Florida.
» More from the AP.
50 years after Nixon halted project cutting canal across Florida, controversy continues
If you were asked to describe the legacy of President Richard Nixon, “environmentalist” is probably not one of the first things that would come to mind. Before a political burglary blew up into a political scandal that toppled a president, Nixon made several progressive decisions, including expanding the Endangered Species Conservation Act, establishing the Environmental Protection Agency and -- 50 years ago this week -- ordering an end to a project that was digging a canal across the Florida peninsula.
» Read more from WJXT.
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