June 23, 2021

Wednesday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 6/9/2021

Florida looks for proposals for grants to attract jobs to the state

With a fresh $50 million available for next fiscal year, the state jobs agency has opened the application process for a program that provides infrastructure and workforce incentives to attract businesses to Florida. The Department of Economic Opportunity on Monday tweeted that it is accepting project proposals for the Job Growth Grant Fund. “The grants will assist communities in funding workforce training and public infrastructure projects to support growth and employment in Florida,” the department tweeted. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Florida Trend Exclusive

What happened in Texas raises questions about Florida's power system

Following the failure of the Texas power grid this year, questions arose about Florida’s grid. Florida, like Texas, can have bad weather statewide, though here it’s hurricanes, not freezes. After Hurricane Wilma in 2005, it took five days to restore power to half the 3.2 million FP&L customers who lost it and another 13 days to restore them all. [Source: Florida Trend]

Planning to run for office in Florida in 2022? A key deadline is approaching

A new Florida law means that for the 2022 election cycle, candidates for partisan offices will have until Saturday, June 12, to change their party affiliation. Candidates who wish to qualify with a political party need to confirm they have not been registered with a prior party 365 days before qualifying begins, according to Senate Bill 90. Non-affiliated candidates must also maintain their status during the year period. [Source: WUFT]

States, including Florida, pass record budgets amid pandemic recession recovery

Florida’s record $101.5 billion budget is up roughly 11%, with bonuses for teachers, police and firefighters, and new construction projects at schools and colleges. Lawmakers decided they had money to spare, expanding sales tax breaks for school and hurricane supplies, and creating a new tax-free week to buy museum and concert tickets and recreational gear for camping, fishing, and surfing. [Source: AP]

Florida readies for ‘Freedom Week’ tax break

The Department of Revenue has set up a webpage for the state’s first “Freedom Week” sales-tax holiday from July 1 through July 7. The page -- Floridarevenue.com/freedomweek -- is designed to help businesses carry out the tax holiday, which will allow people to avoid paying sales taxes on tickets purchased for such things as live music, athletic contests, in-theater movies, cultural events and entrance to museums and state parks. Tickets could be purchased during the week for events that occur later in the year, including annual passes. [Source: WJXT]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› FPL's '30-by-30' plan reaches key milestone with more than 12 million solar panels generating electricity in the state of Florida
Florida Power & Light Company (FPL) has achieved a major milestone by surpassing 40% completion of its groundbreaking "30-by-30" plan to install 30 million solar panels by 2030, which is one of the largest solar expansions in the United States. To date, FPL has installed more than 12 million solar panels in Florida, putting the company well on its way to achieving its "30-by-30" plan.

› Seminole Gaming CEO praises gambling deal as ‘$500 million solution’
Jim Allen, CEO of Seminole Gaming and chairman of Hard Rock International, has steered the Seminole Tribe of Florida’s casino operations for two decades. But his biggest coup might be a 30-year agreement, known as a “compact,” that includes opening the door to sports betting in Florida. Allen was instrumental in nailing down the deal between Gov. Ron DeSantis and tribal Chairman Marcellus Osceola Jr. in April and persuading lawmakers to approve the plan during a special legislative session last month.

› USF’s College of Education, once on the chopping block, gets a new dean
After a search conducted under heightened public scrutiny, the University of South Florida announced Tuesday that Anthony Rolle, a former professor and department chair at the school, will lead its College of Education. The dean’s position was almost eliminated when the university last year said it planned to phase out its undergraduate education programs and turn the college into a school.

› MSC Cruises plots Florida return with 1st Port Canaveral, Miami sailings
MSC Cruises has been trying to debut a ship at Port Canaveral since 2020, and now has a target as it announced plans to return to business from Florida. “After what has been a challenging period, we’re thrilled to say it’s finally time to cruise again. We are excited to be officially announcing our restart this summer from the U.S., and Florida in particular, as excitement is building for vacationers to get back to traveling and plan a much-deserved getaway,” said Gianni Onorato, CEO of MSC Cruises in a press release.

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Florida Trend Video Pick

Tampa jazz veteran being recognized in award-winning documentary at age 86
Tampa jazz veteran being recognized in award-winning documentary at age 86

Kitty Daniels, who has been performing in Tampa since the 1940s, is being highlighted in a new award-winning documentary "Kitty Daniels and Majid Shabazz Jazz Legends."

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