Congressional delegation tackles ways to preserve Florida tourism
At a special meeting of Florida’s Congressional Delegation, industry leaders said tourism depended on ecological treasures surviving into the future. “We have launched efforts to showcase some of our natural attractions and pushing people to some of our more rural areas,” said Dana Young, president of VISIT FLORIDA. “Once people see the natural beauties of our state they will be more inclined to do things to maintain them and protect them.” Florida has seen record tourism the last eight years. But that means fresh demands on roads, ports and other infrastructure. [Source: Florida Politics]
Florida could abolish constitutional commission that bundled amendments in 2018
The Florida House is looking at eliminating a powerful state commission that drew criticism last year when it put on the 2018 ballot constitutional amendments made up of unrelated topics. The House Civil Justice Subcommittee on Thursday overwhelmingly backed a pair of proposals (HJR 301 and HB 303) that would seek voter approval in 2020 to abolish the Constitution Revision Commission. The panel drew bipartisan scorn for the way it put seven amendments on the November 2018 ballot. More from the Orlando Sentinel and CBS Miami.
Gov. DeSantis rolls out new teacher bonus proposal
Saying he wants to recognize “really great teachers,” Gov. Ron DeSantis on Thursday unveiled a $300 million bonus program to replace the “Best and Brightest” bonus he deemed confusing. In all, he said, it would affect nearly 80 percent of the state’s public school teachers, with some seeing their compensation increase as much as 15 percent. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]
Before the flood: How Kennedy Space Center is preparing for sea level rise
Created to propel humankind beyond the limits of Earth, Kennedy Space Center is now facing a terrestrial threat — the warming of our home planet, leading to sea level rise, erosion and catastrophic flooding — that could hinder our push to deep space. To protect the nation’s most historic launch pads and the only place in the United States capable of launching humans to orbit, NASA is building a massive dune along the coast but experts say that isn’t enough, leaving some to consider the unthinkable: What if Kennedy Space Center had to move to higher ground? [Source: Florida Today]
Record-low unemployment? Tell that to these 1,300 South Florida job seekers
The unemployment rate for the Miami metro area — which includes Broward and Palm Beach counties — now stands at 3.1 percent. One tick lower, and it will set a record. But that rate does not measure job security or job satisfaction. Hundreds of job seekers turned up Wednesday at the BB&T Center in Sunrise for the last job fair of the year produced by JobNewsUSA.com and Job Post Media. [Source: Miami Herald]
Meet Stacy Ritter: Broward County's champion of change
From business to politics, women in Florida’s most diverse county are changing the perception of Greater Fort Lauderdale. And one in particular is pushing the boundaries of what has been a very traditional approach to tourism in the Sunshine State. Meet Stacy Ritter, Broward County’s Champion of Change. [Sponsored report]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› VC-backed real estate brokerage expands to Florida [The Real Deal]
On the heels of raising $35 million, a San Francisco-based brokerage that provides white-label tools to agents has set its sights on Florida. Side, the venture-backed brokerage founded in 2017, launched in Florida this week, the company said. Unlike traditional firms, Side offers back-office and marketing support to agents who run their own businesses.
› Florida lawmakers could give pharmacists the power to treat flu, strep [WPEC]
In an attempt to increase access to health care, a House panel on Wednesday approved a proposal that would authorize pharmacists to test patients for --- and treat --- the flu and strep throat. But physicians who oppose the bill warned that increased access to care doesn’t mean patients will receive top-notch care.
› Garbage is getting more expensive in Brevard County [Florida Today]
Waste Management Inc. is in line to remain the trash hauler for unincorporated areas of Brevard County for an additional seven years — with a rate increase of as much as 43%. Residential and commercial customers could experience a significant increase in their trash collection bills after the new contract takes effect in October 2020.
› Tampa International ranked best midsize airport in America [Tampa Bay Times]
Locals have long professed their love for Tampa International Airport, but one ranking has officially moved TPA up to first class. The Wall Street Journal called Tampa International the best among midsize airports in its annual survey ranking the best large and midsize airports in the country.
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› Three Tallahassee lawyers tapped to become Florida administrative law judges [Florida Politics]
Three Tallahassee lawyers have been appointed state administrative law judges for the Division of Administrative Hearings (DOAH), Chief Judge John MacIver said late Wednesday. The three are his first hires as the DOAH’s new director.
› Florida hot air balloon event coming to Orlando [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
Ready to take flight? The Orlando skyline will be lit-up with hot hair balloons for the Orlando Balloon Glow at Blue Jacket Park from Nov. 14-17. Guests can purchase tickets to take a tethered hot air balloon ride. Whether you’re catching views with a date or riding solo, you can get your head in the clouds or hang out and watch the views from the park lawn.
› Statehouse proposal pushes prison reform in Florida [WESH]
After an alleged beating brought several state lawmakers to tour a women's prison in Central Florida, a bill has been introduced that proposes reform. A new House bill filed this week by Tampa Democrat Rep. Dianne Hart would establish basic rights for inmates in Florida.
› Florida Theatre launches capital campaign for major renovation ahead of 100th anniversary [Action News Jax]
Saying it will make the facility so much better, leaders of the Florida Theatre officially launched a capital campaign to complete a $10 million renovation ahead of the 100th anniversary of the downtown landmark.