Wednesday's Afternoon Update
What you need to know about Florida today
Amazon Squeeze: The company's push into Florida’s tight labor market garners mixed reviews
Amazon’s rapid growth across Florida is making the company one of the largest employers in the state. The company now has more than 59,000 employees in the Sunshine State – and is looking to hire thousands more for new distribution centers opening soon. With more big projects in the works, the hiring frenzy won’t stop there. But all that growth doesn’t come without a cost; especially in already tight job markets like Florida. More from the Florida Times-Union and the Gainesville Sun.
Floridians see personal finance class requirement as a positive for students
Residents across Florida are optimistic about the potential impacts of a new law requiring a personal finance class for graduation. Gov. Ron DeSantis recently signed the measure that will require high school students to complete a half credit course on personal finance before graduation. The law seeks to rectify a lack of financial literacy in the state, as well as prepare students for the difficult economic challenges that may lay ahead. The requirement will take effect for ninth grade students entering the 2023-24 school year. More from WUFT.
Florida to halt applications for rental assistance program for low-income residents
The state Department of Children and Families announced Tuesday it is poised to stop taking applications for a federally funded rental- and utility assistance program for low-income and unemployed residents. The department launched the OUR Florida program, or Opportunities for Utilities and Rental Assistance, last year to help people who were behind on rent or utility payments. Applications will be accepted through Thursday. More from the Tampa Bay Times.
Fort Myers mine sells for $15.3 million
Seagate Development Group has bought a 502-acre sand and salt mine in Fort Myers. The company paid $15.3 million for the property, buying it from MCIN Bell. LSI Cos. represented both parties. The Bell Boulevard Mine is made up of six million tons of import fill and 21 million tons of base rock. Earth Tech Enterprises, a Seagate company, will mine the site starting in June. More from the Business Observer.
Fort Lauderdale may face $1.5M legal bill over public feeding crackdown
Violate the law of the land and there are consequences. In this case, a $1.5 million legal bill. That’s right. Fort Lauderdale taxpayers might have to fork over an eye-popping chunk of change to cover the legal fees of five attorneys who spent seven years arguing that Fort Lauderdale’s homeless feeding ban was unconstitutional. The attorneys, who represented the nonprofit group Fort Lauderdale Food Not Bombs, won their case last fall and are now wrangling with the city over the bill. More from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
Second-generation space worker Janet Petro continues to oversee dramatic change at KSC
As Janet Petro winds down her first year in the top job at NASA’s Kennedy Space Center, she’s focused on transitioning KSC to what she bills as a launch “mecca” — a facility serving not only NASA, but also private space companies like Spacex and Blue Origin with the possibilities of 50+ of launches a year. When Petro was named the 11th director in June 2021, she became the first woman to hold that position, after having been deputy director since 2007.
» More from Florida Today.
Cruise fares are suddenly cheap as ships resume sailing with full capacity
Now might be the best time in a long time — and for a long time — to book a cruise out of Florida. Fares available for three- to four-night cruises to the Bahamas and Western Caribbean from Port Canaveral, PortMiami and Fort Lauderdale’s Port Everglades remain enticingly low as cruise lines work their way back to full operational status.
» Read more from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.
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