Jobless claims remain low amid DeSantis warnings
Unemployment claims in Florida continue to roll in at a pre-pandemic pace and tax collections are up, but Gov. Ron DeSantis is maintaining a drumbeat that federal economic policies might “plunge” the nation into a recession. “Florida has been doing well, and we're happy about that. But when you have the inflation headwinds, when you have the Fed raising interest rates, when you have some of the other things that are happening in the markets, there is a possibility of seeing a downturn,” DeSantis said. [Source: News Service of Florida]
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Florida to hospitals: Show us the money spent on treating undocumented immigrants
The administration of Gov. Ron DeSantis is calling on Florida’s hospitals to compile information on how much money they are spending to treat immigrants who have entered the country illegally. Agency for Health Care Administration Secretary Simone Marstiller on Thursday sent a letter to Florida Hospital Association President and CEO Mary Mayhew pointing out that regulators earlier this week asked all licensed hospitals to figure all costs and expenditures and “report any uncollected debt calculations related to the health care of illegal aliens.” [Source: Florida Politics]
Florida rents are nation’s most ‘overvalued’ but might come down, expert says
Florida’s rents have skyrocketed over the past year, but one expert says they could do something even more shocking in the near future: come down. “There might be a little back-up in the rent,” said Ken H. Johnson, a professor of real estate economics at Florida Atlantic University. Johnson is co-author of a new study that found Florida to have the most overvalued rental markets in the country, meaning the highest disparity between actual rent and what the market has historically commanded in a particular community. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Enterprise Florida launches Minority and Small Business Boot Camp 2.0
This week, Enterprise Florida (EFI) launched its Minority and Small Business Boot Camp 2.0. Following a successful inaugural boot camp in 2021, EFI’s Minority and Small Business Boot Camp 2.0 will feature a hybrid of virtual and in-person sessions designed to educate minority and small businesses regarding information integral to growth and success. [Source: Florida Trend]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› State: Turkey Point nuclear plant can keep using controversial cooling canal system [Miami Herald]
The aging network of canals that cool Miami-Dade’s nuclear power plant has long been a lightning rod for legal challenges from environmentalists, especially after it spawned a massive underground plume of saltwater that threatened South Florida’s drinking water. But Florida Power & Light has once again won state approval to continue operating the system.
› Riding a wave of record earnings, Orlando-based SeaWorld looks to grow [Orlando Sentinel]
SeaWorld reported record revenue and earnings in its first quarter of the year as attendance at its theme parks roared back from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Orlando-based company is planning new projects, including theme parks, hotels and international expansion, as it looks to offer new experiences at its existing parks, executives said during an earnings call Thursday. They expect to share details later this year.
› Jacksonville University College of Law preparing for first students [Jacksonville Daily Record]
When Jacksonville University President Tim Cost announced at a news conference Feb. 28 that JU was establishing a college of law, he was not fully prepared for the response from local lawyers and law firms. “I am so impressed by the goodwill and support from the legal community. Things lined up properly,” Cost said April 18, seven weeks after the announcement.
› Miami group buys Clearwater hotels, converting them to workforce apartments [Tampa Bay Times]
A Miami real estate investment group has purchased two extended-stay hotels off Ulmerton Drive in Clearwater with the intent of converting them into apartments. The two properties have 183 units between them. Eagle Property Capital intends to convert them to efficiency, studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments in the 500-to-850-square-foot range and consolidate them under the name Pelican Lake Apartments.
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› NYSE operator agrees to buy Black Knight for $13.1 billion [Jacksonville Daily Record]
The company that operates the New York Stock Exchange and other financial networks is buying Jacksonville-based mortgage technology company Black Knight Inc. for $13.1 billion. Intercontinental Exchange Inc. announced May 4 it agreed to buy Black Knight for $85 a share in cash and stock, a 30% increase to the stock’s trading price a month ago before speculation about a buyout began.
› Miami-Dade private ambulance rates may spike [Miami Today]
Private ambulance rates may increase in Miami-Dade County as county commissioners requested Mayor Daniella Levine Cava to prepare a report within 30 days on existing rates and recommend any adjustments needed. A resolution sponsored by Sen. Rene Garcia, approved by county commissioners on Tuesday, proposes an increase of 114.8% for the basic life support base rate in which ambulances are staffed by emergency medical technicians.
› TD Bank targets South Florida tech talent pool [Banking Dive]
TD Bank is launching a technology hub in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, and plans to add 200 new roles in the region over the next two years, the bank announced Tuesday. The Toronto-based lender said it aims to tap into the South Florida market’s growing community of tech and innovation talent.
› Cost of Allegiant's Charlotte Harbor resort jumps again, now topping $600 million [Business Observer]
The price to build the Sunseeker Resort Charlotte Harbor has gone up — again. After saying earlier this year the price tag for the resort had risen to $585 million, Allegiant Travel Co. disclosed in an Securities and Exchange Commission filing Tuesday afternoon, May 4, that the price tag now stands at $618 million. The company says in the filing — its first quarter earnings report — that the increase is “primarily due to inflationary pressures on materials as well as supply chain delays.”