Thursday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Can Florida’s broken workforce aid program be fixed? Lawmakers aren’t sure.
In a dimly lit basement committee room at the Florida Capitol this week, lawmakers had one big question for the officials in charge of Florida’s workforce development program. Who exactly benefits from the web of bureaucracy Florida has set up to route hundreds of millions of federal dollars to people looking for new or better jobs? Over the decades, politicians have agreed the federal government should have a hand in getting people jobs that fit the modern economy — but not always on the training programs to do it. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Cruise lines, mayor say shore power coming to PortMiami ‘as expeditiously as possible’
Polluting cruise ships may finally be able to plug in at PortMiami, slashing emissions that harm humans and contribute to climate change. Miami-Dade Mayor Daniella Levine Cava signed a letter of intent Wednesday with the CEOs of six cruise companies and the CEO of Florida Power & Light to bring the pollution control technology called shore power to PortMiami. More from the Miami Herald.
Clearwater storage company Pods names Kathryn Marinello new president, CEO
Kathryn Marinello has been named Pods new president and CEO, the company announced this week. She arrives from Hertz Global Holdings, owner of the Hertz, Dollar and Thrifty rental car brands, where she held the same titles. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Legal fight over Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort project deepens
The ill-fated renovation of Disney World’s Saratoga Springs Resort has led to a flurry of lawsuits from subcontractors claiming they haven’t been paid and a countersuit by Disney itself. In the nearly eight months since the legal fight began between Validus Construction Services and Disney, at least seven subcontractors, including one last week, have sued Validus claiming they are owed a total of $1.58 million in payments, according to Orange Circuit Court documents. More from the Orlando Sentinel.
Bradenton Blues Festival announces 2021 lineup, return to LECOM Park
Bradenton Blues Festival has announced the lineup for this year’s event, including a Grammy-winning Blues Hall of Famer, as well as its return to LECOM Park. The 10th annual festival will take place Dec. 3-4 at the Pittsburgh Pirates’ Manatee County spring training home, along with a Dec. 5 Sunday Blues Brunch at Mattison’s Riverwalk Grille. The festival changed venues from Bradenton Riverwalk to the approximately 7,500-seat LECOM Park last year to allow for greater social distancing. More from the Sarasota Herald-Tribune.
Blue Jays will open season in Dunedin
The Toronto Blue Jays made official Thursday morning what had seemed obvious, that they will at least start the 2021 regular season playing “home” games at their spring training base in Dunedin. The team will host fans in a limited 15-percent capacity at TD Ballpark. Details are expected soon. The Jays announced that the shift initially covers only their first two homestands, April 8-14 (against the Angels and Yankees) and April 27-May 2 (Nationals and Braves). They have hopes of returning to Toronto before the third starts on May 14.
» More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Nimble spice manufacturing business tastes big year
When Ed Brakus had trouble finding ingredients for the Southeast Asian dishes he liked to cook, he started growing things himself. Then what began as a hobby in Austin, Texas, morphed into a garage-based, part-time spice-making endeavor after his job took him to the San Francisco Bay area. But to turn those on-the-side spice sales into a full-time company, it was necessary to look outside of expensive California. Since moving to Florida in 2016, the spice company has grown to an eight-employee business selling 250 different spices and seasonings.
» Read more from the Business Observer.
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