Florida Trend | Florida's Business Authority

Thursday's Daily Pulse

Florida companies tap into an underutilized solution amid labor crisis: Employees with criminal records

Facing a crisis-level shortage in job applicants, businesses are turning to what’s commonly called second-chance employees — people with criminal records or other past blemishes — to fill job openings. Leaders in helping second-chance employees find work believe many more hiring managers will be open to shifting policies to benefit their organization and society. [Source: Business Observer]

Special Olympics Florida helps Ukrainian refugees with intellectual disabilities

Though separated by 5,200 miles and a language barrier, Special Olympics Florida is leading what has become a national effort to help athletes with intellectual disabilities forced to flee the war in Ukraine. “Those athletes and their families are facing unimaginable challenges,” said Sherry Wheelock, president and CEO of Special Olympics Florida. “First, they had to escape the violence of the war, and now they have to make a new life in a new community. … Our athletes really wanted to do something to help.” [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Florida Trend Exclusive

South Florida employers demand more office space, adopt hybrid models to accommodate growth

Jeffrey Gordon is senior managing director at JLL. He says he’s seeing the most demand for office space in Miami-Dade. He told FLORIDA TREND how JLL is managing the growth of the hybrid office and what his outlook is for the next year: "We are seeing the most demand for office space mainly in the markets of Brickell and Wynwood. Many tech companies that are looking to grow and expand into the South Florida market have a strong focus on Wynwood because there is new office product available and distributed types of products such as low-rise buildings and warehouse conversions." [Source: Florida Trend]

Florida remains deadliest state for bicyclists

Every day, on average, 18 people are in a bicycle crash in Florida, according to numbers from the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles. Every two days, a person dies from their injuries in a bike crash, so far in 2022. The Sunshine State is the most dangerous state in the country for bike riders. [Source: WFTX]

Feds indict Andrew Gillum on conspiracy, campaign fraud charges

Democrat Andrew Gillum, who narrowly lost the 2018 governor’s race to Republican Ron DeSantis, was indicted on charges of wire fraud and making false statements to the FBI, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida announced Wednesday. Also indicated was Sharon Lettman-Hicks, a Gillum associate who is running this year for a Tallahassee-area state House seat. More from the News Serice of Florida and the Orlando Sentinel.


› Jacksonville approves $24.4 million in work for Jaguars training facility  
The city approved two building permits June 21 totaling job costs of $24.4 million for components of the Jacksonville Jaguars Miller Electric Center practice facility. Haskell is the contractor for the work. One permit is for $19.4 million for the indoor practice field and the other for $5 million for work above the concrete slab foundation. In February, the city approved permits for $24.55 million in foundation and demolition work at the facility.

› Orlando Sanford International Airport names Guillet as new president, CEO
Nicole Guillet, who resigned as Seminole County manager in December, was named as the new president and chief executive officer of the Orlando Sanford International Airport on Tuesday. She will replace Tom Nolan, who served in that role since July 2020. Airport officials said Nolan has decided to retire.

› Miami-Dade urges feds to push down loan interest on farmland
County commissioners are urging the Biden administration and the US Department of Agriculture to act to lower interest rates on loans for the purchase of land for agricultural use. The request came only one day before the Feds announced a record .75 percentage point increase in interest rates to slow the economy and put brakes on inflation.

› Bank of America appoints Southwest Florida business banking exec
Stephenie Whitfield, who has worked in banking in Atlanta and Nashville for more than a decade, has been named business banking market executive of Southwest Florida for Bank of America. Whitfield will lead a team of bankers that serve companies with annual revenues of $5 million to $50 million, according to a statement. She will based in Bradenton, and her team will provide a variety of financial solutions, including treasury, credit, investment banking, risk management, international banking, and wealth management.

Go to page 2 for more stories ...

› Pension fund ‘solid' amid market volatility
Florida’s pension fund remains “solid” despite growing pressure from global market conditions, Lamar Taylor, interim executive director of the State Board of Administration, said Wednesday. Overseeing about $250 billion in assets, the board invests money from the Florida Retirement System, along with 25 other funds, and manages the Florida Hurricane Catastrophe Fund.

› After more than 132 years, Jacobs Jewelers moving out of downtown Jacksonville
The owners of Jacobs Jewelers are looking at the recent purchase of The Greenleaf Building as the opportunity to move Jacksonville’s oldest jewelry and fine gifts store to a new location. “We are relocating out of Downtown to a more friendly environment for our customers,” said Delorise Thomas.

› Tampa port votes to lower property tax rate, but floats future increase
For 28 years, Port Tampa Bay has either dropped or held steady the millage tax rates it levies on Hillsborough County property owners in order to fund capital improvements. An end to that streak may be on the horizon. Port commissioners on Tuesday voted to decrease this year’s port millage rate to no more than $0.0844 per $1,000 in property valuation, down from $0.0935 this year.

› PadSplit finds rooms for Orlando renters with no ‘good options’
As rents in Central Florida climb to unprecedented levels, a new service is connecting low-income Orlando renters with available rooms. PadSplit offers available rooms for less than the market rate. Residents share communal living space, including kitchen and dining areas, in a home. Founded in Atlanta in 2017, PadSplit expanded to Orlando in June.