Wednesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
The fight over Florida's new elections laws continue to divide the state
Florida elections have been plagued with drama for decades, before and after the hanging chads in 2000. But last year’s presidential election didn’t have recount issues, claims of election fraud, or even court battles here in Florida. After election night, Governor Ron DeSantis said “people are actually looking at Florida and asking, why can’t these states be more like Florida?" Most people — Republicans and Democrats — agree. However, Florida Republicans added restrictions to the state’s voting process. More from the WFTS.
Why are Florida stone crab prices so high this season?
Days into stone crab season, seafood markets, wholesalers and restaurants are reeling from record-high prices and disappointing landings for Florida’s sweet delicacy of the sea. Crabbers and stores say lean traps caused by unusually warm waters in the Florida Keys and certain supply-chain costs are pinching stone crab supplies, sending prices as much as 25 percent higher on menus than at the start of the 2020 season. If there’s any good news, it’s this: Customer demand remains as strong as ever. More from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
Brightline is back: Service returning Nov. 8
South Florida’s Brightline express train is returning to regular service Monday, Nov. 8, after the coronavirus pandemic shut down operations for well over a year. For a limited time only, one-way ticket prices will start at $10 for SMART service and $27 for PREMIUM. Passengers who order through Brightline’s app will get their first ride free through November. More from the Miami Herald.
Miami International Airport ready for global visitor bonanza
With the return of international travel for vaccinated non-US citizens nationwide, Miami International Airport expects a spike in overall passengers following a steady increase in air traffic since the lowest numbers of the pandemic. The Biden administration announced Oct. 15 that the US will lift international travel restrictions for fully vaccinated travelers Nov. 8 for about 39 nations previously restricted since 2020. According to the Miami-Dade Aviation Department, six of those nations, including China, Mexico and Brazil, were among Miami International Airport’s busiest tourist markets in 2019. More from Miami Today.
Tampa port pitches incentives to lure cargo stuck in supply chain logjam
Cargo ships keep backing up at major ports in cities like Los Angeles and Savannah, Ga., leading to supply chain logjams that have kept prices up and retail shelves empty. In response, Florida ports like Port Tampa Bay are seizing the chance to make a business pitch: Start sending some of that cargo our way. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Search for ‘recession-proof’ concept led pair to open mailbox business
Pamela Payne and Ben Turner opened the first Mailbox Plus 2 store in Jacksonville. Payne, the owner and president, said COVID-19 was a reality check for her and her husband, longtime Northeast Florida business owner and community leader Willard Payne Jr. She wanted a business that would remain profitable during a pandemic with a service people needed.
» More from the Jacksonville Daily Record.
Out of the Box
‘Star Wars’ mansion listed for $11.5 million in Florida captivates Zillow Gone Wild
An elaborate mansion listed for $11.5 million in Kissimmee, Florida has a hidden secret on the third level that will attract both young and and old Jedi warriors, as well as spark the imagination of those on a popular Facebook page. The 15-bedroom, 19 bathroom home spread out over 17,694 square feet has a magical, yet elegant touch in all of the features, but especially on a loft with a “Star Wars” theme — a loft that includes a kids theater and an area for video games.
» Read more from the Miami Herald.
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