December 8, 2023

Wednesday's Daily Pulse

What you need to know about Florida today

| 9/27/2023

Florida overtakes New York as second most-valuable housing market in U.S.

The total value of U.S. housing rose more than $2.6 trillion in the past year. The gains haven’t been evenly spread across the country. In California, which contains about one-fifth of the U.S. housing market, prices have declined since June 2022. But in Florida, the value of residential property has risen $160 billion in that period — pushing the Sunshine State ahead of New York in the national rankings. [Source: Financial Post]

Florida companies scored more than $21 million in Pentagon contracts

Defense contractor Lockheed Martin has been making good use of its dozen or so facilities spread across Florida. The Bethesda, Maryland, aerospace and defense giant recorded $6.3 billion in military contracting work in the Sunshine State in 2021.The $6.3 billion figure represents 29.1% of all military contracting in the state More from the  Business Observer and the Center Square.

Commentary: Enhancing Florida’s clean-energy potential will create jobs, boost economy

Embracing and advancing Florida’s clean-energy capabilities not only helps mitigate the impacts of climate change on our state, but also enables us to create 21st-century jobs and build a stronger, more sustainable economy. National Clean Energy Week, Sept. 25-29, is a good time to reflect on the growing potential clean energy has to help strengthen communities throughout Florida and across the country. [Source: Miami Herald]

Florida businesses face scam risk in pandemic tax credit program

The Internal Revenue Service recently announced it would pump the brakes on the Employee Retention Credit which was designed to help businesses stay afloat during the pandemic. Experts hope it will ward off scammers who have used aggressive marketing tactics to make money off businesses that don't meet the program's narrow criteria. [Source: Axios]

Feds: Florida’s poor oversight of psychotropic meds put foster kids at risk

The use of powerful psychotropic and opioid medications in Florida’s child welfare system is supposed to be strictly regulated and documented. But a federal audit of 115 records of children prescribed those medications selected at random by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services found lax record-keeping and multiple cases of child welfare workers failing to follow Florida regulations on psychotropic or opioid medication. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

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› FIFA moving 100+ jobs to Florida from Zurich as legal department transfers to 2026 World Cup base
FIFA is moving more than 100 jobs from its Swiss headquarters to Florida, where a growing workforce is already working on organizing the 2026 World Cup. FIFA informed staff on Tuesday that its entire legal department and the audit, compliance and risk management teams will move from Zurich to Coral Gables near Miami — a city whose status on the global soccer map is growing after Lionel Messi’s move to play in MLS for Inter Miami.

› Why a global accelerator chose Kissimmee for its first Florida location
Sunnyvale, California-based Plug and Play Tech Center CEO Saeed Amidi and his team are getting ready to start local operations on Jan.1, 2024. This comes after Osceola County commissioners approved a drafted agreement between the county and Amidi's company on Sept. 19. The next day, Plug and Play's VP of Corporate Partnerships Johannes Rott and Head of Semiconductors Rouzbeh Borhani already were on a flight to Florida to prepare the opening.

› In Miami-Dade’s toll wars, a new skirmish: severance packages for ousted executives
In the messy fight that shifted power over Miami-Dade’s toll roads from Miami to Tallahassee, a new skirmish is emerging: severance deals approved by the old toll board for top executives ousted by the current board. The Greater Miami Expressway Agency (GMX) is a state-backed board that last month took over the Dolphin Expressway and four other busy commuting routes generating more than $200 million in toll revenue each year.

› Pasco residents want rural character, natural resources, not rampant growth
Often when someone proposes a new project in Pasco County, officials get an earful about how those nearby don’t want more development, more traffic and the loss of wildlife, trees and peace that drew them to the county in the first place. Those same sorts of responses also turned up as the county asked citizens over the last several months how they wanted to see Pasco grow in the future. The exercise was part of the county’s effort to update its current comprehensive plan through 2050.

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