April 21, 2021

Thursday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 4/1/2021

Florida’s consumer confidence grows amid vaccine expansion

As more Floridians are vaccinated and the economy returns to normal, a University of Florida survey finds that Florida residents are feeling more confident in their personal finances than they were just a month ago. After tumbling in February, consumer sentiment among Floridians increased in March 3.7 points from February’s revised figure of 77.2. Similarly, national consumer sentiment surged 8.1 points. All five components that make up the index increased. More from UF News and WJCT.

Hurricane forecast by AccuWeather calls for another busy season for 2021

Another busy hurricane season appears likely, although it won’t be as bad as last year, according to a prediction released Wednesday by AccuWeather, a private weather forecasting service. The prediction calls for seven to 10 hurricanes. Three to five of these are expected to reach major hurricane strength, which means winds of at least 111 mph. “Current indications are this will be another above-normal season,” said Dan Kottlowski, AccuWeather’s lead hurricane forecaster. “This can translate into high impacts on the United States.” [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Lawmakers look to restrict impact fees

Amid a booming real-estate market in many areas, state lawmakers are moving forward with proposals that would place additional restrictions on impact fees that cities, counties and school boards say are needed to help keep up with growth. House and Senate committees Wednesday approved bills that include putting limits on impact-fee increases and defining the types of infrastructure projects that can be funded with impact-fee money. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Companies relocating to Florida must consider the state’s legal landscape

COVID-19 has prompted seismic changes to the ways people live, work and socialize. While Florida’s business community has long been the beneficiary of migration from New York and other states, this exodus has reached a fever pitch as companies embrace flexible or partially remote workforces and Florida’s growing technology and finance ecosystems. While any business relocating to the state should work with local counsel to ensure that it meets all of its legal obligations, there are a few key requirements—and competitive advantages—that should be near the top of the list. [Source: Daily Business Review]

Florida manatees face a new threat: Weed killer

A group of Florida scientists published a study that shows the state's manatees are chronically exposed to a chemical in herbicides, like Roundup. The research concluded that the constant contact could affect the immune and urinary systems of manatees. The weed killer glyphosate was originally thought to be short lived and dissipate quickly after use in the environment, but 55.8% of the 105 manatees tested had the compound in their plasma. [Source: WLRN]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› SeaWorld prepares festivals for rest of 2021
SeaWorld Orlando has posted dates for festivals running through the end of 2021, including for its popular Halloween Spooktacular event and the Christmas holiday season. The theme park’s website says Spooktacular will kick off Sept. 18 and its Christmas celebration will start Nov. 12. Both holiday events were held last year despite limited capacity at the park due to the coronavirus pandemic.

› Water Street Tampa partners facing $30M in disputes over unpaid construction, labor
Development teams behind Water Street Tampa are facing at least 20 liens and disputes on buildings in their growing downtown mini-city, all for unpaid construction and labor contracts within the past year. The groups, including builders and limited liability corporations tied to developers and land owners, owe more than $30.1 million in unpaid construction and labor costs, according to lien documents filed with the Hillsborough County Clerk’s office within the past year.

› Your favorite Miami restaurant is probably struggling to serve you. Here’s why
Restaurant owners say they are having unprecedented difficulty in hiring staff. Ads in mainstream and trade-industry job sites go unanswered, even as restaurants take advantage of Florida’s wide-open economy to open new spots here. Despite the ongoing threat of COVID, tourists continue to come as vaccine-distribution ramps up.

› EDC Orlando tickets go on sale Thursday
After a year of canceled concerts, events and festivals, EDC Orlando is returning to Tinker Field in November 2021, bringing with it tens of thousands of ravers listening to electronic dance music. The live music event, which Insomniac bills as its flagship East Coast festival, is scheduled to bring a massive three-night party back to the City Beautiful Nov. 12-14, 2021. The festival will help celebrate 25 years of Electric Daisy Carnival events around the world.

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Florida Trend Video Pick

Tour one of Florida's top wonders, Rainbow Springs
Tour one of Florida's top wonders, Rainbow Springs

The state's fourth-largest spring offers some incredible views, and kayaking on Rainbow River is one of the top things to do in Central Florida. So, Times reporters decided to head out on the water to give it a try.

Earlier Videos | Viewpoints@FloridaTrend

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