Tuesday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
When will Florida see the impact of coronavirus vaccinations?
when will we start to see results? The most obvious change to look for would be a decline in the number of new cases. But the statistic being watched most closely by experts is the number of people hospitalized. Hospitalizations should plummet if the vaccines perform as expected, scientists say, taking pressure off healthcare systems that have strained for nearly a year under the weight of their COVID caseloads. Another result should be a decline in deaths, since the elderly account for 83% of Florida’s fatal cases and have received the majority of vaccinations. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
Local money requests pile up in Florida legislature amid budget warnings
Two major local funding requests, including a proposal to help a community devastated by Hurricane Michael, were filed last week, as legislative leaders reminded lawmakers that the upcoming state budget will be tight. Rep. Jason Shoaf, R-Port St. Joe, put in an appropriations request (HB 3235) for $25 million to help rebuild the shoreline in Mexico Beach, which sustained major damage when the Category 5 Hurricane Michael made landfall in October 2018. Meanwhile, Sen. Jason Pizzo, D-North Miami Beach, requested $66 million (Senate Form 1182) to shift property owners from septic tanks to a sewer system in the low- to-moderate income Little River area of Miami, where 1,650 parcels are vulnerable to rising groundwater. [Source: WUWF]
Florida gas prices take ‘surprising leap’ to highest price in over a year
Florida’s average gas prices rose 11 cents over the past week, according to the American Automobile Association, which called it a “surprising leap.” The average price for a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline across the state was $2.49 to start this week, AAA said, the highest since January 2020. “Gas prices unexpectedly jumped last week, getting well ahead of where wholesale prices would suggest they’d go,” AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said. [Source: WPLG]
Florida hotels and restaurants expect a busier 2021 due to COVID vaccine rollout
The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) reported that 68 percent of hotels had less than half of their full-time staff from before the pandemic. But with the vaccine being rollout to states, industry analysts predict a much brighter 2021. Hotel chains in Florida already report business travel is on the rise due to travelers having more confidence in travel due to the vaccine. [Source: Florida Daily]
Visit Florida plans 2022 in-person trade show
While online this year, Visit Florida intends to hold its next global trade showcase in-person in early 2022. With Florida’s hospitality and leisure industries facing a slow recovery from the coronavirus pandemic, the state’s tourism-marketing arm announced Monday that its “2022 Florida Huddle” will be held in January at the Tampa Convention Center. [Source: News Service of Florida]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Applied Underwriters completes acquisitions of Florida companies
Omaha, Nebraska-based Applied Underwriters Inc. announced Monday that all regulatory approvals have been realized and that Applied has completed its acquisitions of Centauri Specialty Insurance Co. and Centauri National Insurance Co. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The Centauri companies are based in Sarasota, Florida, and serve independent agents and brokers in 10 states, including Alabama, Florida, Hawaii, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas.
› A South Florida company recalls a blood clot drug nationally after a dangerous mistake
Syringe marking errors, which can lead to incorrect dosing, caused a recall of Enoxaparin Sodium Injection, a generic version of blood clot medication Lovenox. The recall issued Tuesday by Apotex, a Weston, Florida, company, says some syringe barrels have 150 mg/ml Enoxaparin Sodium Injection markings instead of 100 mg/ml strength markings “and vice versa.” Apotex says the problem goes back to the manufacturer, Gland Pharma Limited in India.
› Jacksonville's Anheuser-Busch plant getting upgrades as part of brewer’s $1 billion modernization plan
Anheuser-Busch has announced plans to invest more than $1 billion in its U.S. breweries over the next two years to “strengthen operations and deepen connections with communities,” according to the brewer. Close to $400 million will be spent in 2021 at 12 U.S. breweries – including the one in Jacksonville at 111 Busch Drive on the city’s Northside.
› Citizens home insurance policies soar in Central Florida; higher costs could hit all our pocketbooks
State-run Citizens Property Insurance is sounding alarm bells over their rising number of policies it holds in Orange, Osceola, Seminole and Lake counties. CEO Barry Gilway says Florida’s overall insurance market is “unhealthy” and has warned of higher premiums ahead for all Florida homeowners if the trend continues.
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