April 20, 2024

Monday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 11/7/2022

Florida election officials wary of potential tropical system in Atlantic

It’s the last month of hurricane season and there are two tropical disturbances in the Atlantic, one of which may bring troubling weather to Florida on Election Day. The system that may impact Florida is currently bubbling over the southwestern Atlantic, just north of Puerto Rico, where a flood watch is in place through Monday afternoon. The tropical disturbance has already brought over 5 inches of rain to Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands since Saturday – and an additional 1 to 2 inches of rain is forecast for the region Sunday. More from CNN, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Tampa Bay Times, and Bay News 9.

State faces challenges on Medicaid minimum wage

Three health-care groups this week challenged how the Florida Agency for Health Care Administration is carrying out a requirement that “direct care” workers get paid a minimum of $15 an hour. The Florida Assisted Living Association, the Florida Ambulance Association and the Home Care Association of Florida filed the challenges at the state Division of Administrative Hearings. The same groups in late September filed a lawsuit in Leon County circuit court to try to block part of this year’s state budget that could open Medicaid providers to litigation if they don’t pay the $15 minimum wage. [Source: News Service of Florida]

Column: Florida economy, environment thriving in 'goods from the woods'

An economic study by the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences shows that forestry and forest products are the top agricultural commodity and leading agricultural export of Florida. Florida forests provide a $25 billion boost to the state’s economy. In fact, more than 5,000 items contain forest products. [Source: Florida Times-Union]

Russia seized their planes. Now South Florida firms sue insurers over alleged loss

The war in Ukraine is creating financial stress for two aircraft leasing companies in South Florida whose planes are being held hostage in Russia. The firms are seeking an estimated $850 million combined from more than 30 insurance carriers over their alleged refusal to pay claims resulting from the Russian government’s seizure of jetliners and engines at the start of the invasion of Ukraine, according to separate complaints filed in Miami-Dade Circuit Court. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]

Manatee Awareness Month: Florida’s sea cows need urgent action to ensure survival

November marks Manatee Awareness Month, a time to be extra considerate and informed about Florida’s sea cows as they face urgent threats and need help perhaps now more than ever. Manatee deaths in Florida topped 1,100 in 2021, according to data from the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission which has also counted more than 700 deaths since the beginning of 2022. Both years saw manatees starving with a lack of seagrass to eat. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

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ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Black-owned businesses along I-4 corridor impacted by inflation watching election closely
Experts call small businesses the backbone of our economy, but the results of a recent U.S. Chamber of Commerce study found inflation and supply chain disruptions have created some real challenges for them. For one Black-owned business along the I-4 corridor, some careful planning is seeing the company through.

› Florida city council ignores its own zoning board, votes to rezone golf club to single-family houses
Riviera Beach’s par 62 Lone Pine Golf Club is one step closer to ending its 40-year reign as the inexpensive alternative for duffers and beginners alike — as well as a quiet vista for nearby homeowners. Ignoring its own Planning and Zoning Board’s recommendation, Riviera Beach’s City Council voted 3-2 to amend its comprehensive plan to rezone the golf course from recreational use to single-family residence in a sometimes volatile meeting.

› Theme park lays off more than 500 who'll transition to positions with new vendor
Legoland Florida Resort is eliminating 519 jobs as it transitions food and beverage services in January to Aramark Corp., which will take the affected employees on. The Polk County resort disclosed the move in a letter posted to the state’s WARN database Nov. 3. According to the letter sent to the state to meet federal Worker Adjustment Retraining and Notification notice requirements, employees working at the resort will keep their current positions and pay.

› Food manufacturer considering $65 million expansion in Northwest Jacksonville
An unidentified global food manufacturer is asking the city for $3.6 million in property tax and grant incentives for an estimated $65 million expansion of its existing Jacksonville operation. An Oct. 26 project summary from the city Office of Economic Development says code-named Project Cashew plans the expansion of a Northwest Jacksonville facility that would manufacture products for customers throughout the Southeastern U.S.

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