Wednesday's Daily Pulse
What you need to know about Florida today
Best places nationwide to retire: Florida cities again dominate
Florida beach cities still rank among the best places to retire in the nation, according to U.S. News & World Report’s new list for 2021-22. Eight Florida metro areas are among the top 10 nationwide. Sarasota is on top for the second year in a row “due to increases in desirability, retiree tax and job market scores,” the magazine wrote. Naples is No. 2. No inland Central Florida metro areas cracked the top 10 in the new rankings, but Orlando was ranked No. 18 in the nation, down two notches from last year.[Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Florida Trend Exclusive
TV, en Espanol
Spanish-language television — much of it produced in Miami — has become a battleground as the competitive landscape shifts toward streaming and on-demand viewing. Over the past year, companies from Netflix and Hulu to Telemundo and Univision have beefed up their Spanish-language programming to attract a growing Hispanic market in the U.S. and abroad. [Source: Florida Trend]
Investments give Florida's pension fund a boost
Florida’s pension system got a financial boost during the past fiscal year, as it had a 29.46 percent investment return, according to a report posted online Monday by state economists. The report said the system continued to have what is known as an “unfunded actuarial liability” as of July 1, the start of this fiscal year. But the unfunded actuarial liability --- which generally measures current and expected obligations against assets --- improved from $36 billion in 2020 to $30 billion as of July 1, according to a preliminary valuation. [Source: News Service of Florida]
Florida kids still lead all ages in positivity as COVID cases fall
The delta variant wave of COVID-19 cases has significantly receded for all the state’s age groups. But a worrisome trend that started this summer continues into the fall: Florida children 11 and under remain the highest-risk and least-protected age group from infection. Case positivity for the youngest Floridians was 5.3 percent, according to the latest state data released last week. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
Canadians will soon find it easier to reach winter destinations like Florida
The decision to reopen the U.S.-Canada land border to non-essential travel will make it easier for Canadians to get to Florida and their Sun Belt winter destinations. Details are still being worked out, but the plan is for the U.S. to reopen its land borders to vaccinated non-essential visitors on Nov. 8 after being closed for 20 months. Travelers will need to show proof of COVID-19 vaccinations to Customs and Border Protection officials upon request. [Source: Lakeland Ledger]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Florida shuts down three fradulent phishing COVID-19 websites
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement shut down three fraudulent websites attempting to steal driver license information. Last week, Attorney General Ashley Moody released a Consumer Alert, warning drivers about a new text phishing scam attempting to exploit the pandemic in order to obtain personal information.
› Passenger levels remain sky high over pre-pandemic levels at Sarasota airport
Airports continue reveling in the higher-than-normal passenger traffic as several local airports continue to shatter monthly records. The Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport is no exception. The month of September alone at SRQ saw 51% more passengers than it did before the pandemic in 2019. While it’s no surprise that passenger traffic was up 185% over September 2020, the sheer number of passengers was shocking.
› Texas chicken chain looks to roost in Central Florida
A chicken-focused fast-casual chain from the heart of the Lone Star State is looking to expand into Central Florida, starting with a location in Kissimmee. Cowboy Chicken, founded in Dallas in 1981 according to its website, is partnering with franchisee Florida Fine Foods to bring at least four locations to Central Florida.
› ‘SOS Cuba’ movement shows again that Tampa has a stake in island’s future
As home to former political prisoners, research partners and advocates for travel and trade, Tampa has stood at the forefront of debates over shifting relations between the United States and Cuba, A new and largely younger group of local Cubans have joined the latest debate, energized by developments that surprised Cuba watchers and now dominates discussion of how the U.S. should treat Cuba.
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