All posts tagged: Florida News

Why Florida Is the Best State in Education and Economy | Best States

Why Florida Is the Best State in Education and Economy | Best States

[ad_1] The debate around education in Florida is among the most contentious in America. The state’s Republican governor, Ron DeSantis, has staked his political persona on being an opponent of what he terms the “woke” influence on education policy, even centering his 2024 presidential campaign on the theory that his efforts in the Sunshine State would entice a national audience to vote him into the White House. Unfortunately for DeSantis, making America Florida did not resonate with Republican voters in states like Iowa and New Hampshire, and he exited the race after running a distant second to former President Donald Trump in the Iowa caucuses. Florida’s Education Success In higher education, Florida – which is No. 9 in the overall Best States rankings – posted the second-highest rates of timely graduation among students at public institutions pursuing two- and four-year degrees, respectively. Students attending its public, four-year institutions also faced the lowest average amount in the country for in-state tuition and fees. The state fell in the middle of the pack on two other measures …

Senate Races Are Roiled by Campus Protests Over the War in Gaza as Campaign Rhetoric Sharpens

Senate Races Are Roiled by Campus Protests Over the War in Gaza as Campaign Rhetoric Sharpens

[ad_1] HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — The student protest movement disrupting university campuses, classes and graduation ceremonies over the war in Gaza is also roiling Senate contests across the nation as Democrats tread cautiously over an internal divide and Republicans play up their rivals’ disagreements. The political impact of the protests on the White House campaign has drawn considerable attention, with opposition to President Joe Biden’s handling of the Israel-Hamas war reverberating from Columbia to UCLA. The fast-evolving landscape of the demonstrations is shaping pivotal Senate races, too. Tent encampments have popped up at universities in many states where Democrats this election year are defending seats essential to maintaining the party’s razor-thin Senate majority. At some schools, police crackdowns and arrests have followed. The protests have sharpened the campaign rhetoric in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Ohio and Michigan, among other places. Republican candidates in California and Florida have stepped up their criticism of the Democratic president for the U.S. response to the war or for chaotic scenes on American campuses. Some Republicans have shown up at encampments, including …

Trump Media’s Newly Hired Auditing Firm Was Just Busted by the SEC for ‘Massive Fraud’

Trump Media’s Newly Hired Auditing Firm Was Just Busted by the SEC for ‘Massive Fraud’

[ad_1] SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday charged an auditing firm hired by Trump Media and Technology Group just 37 days ago with “massive fraud” — though not for any work it performed for former President Donald Trump’s media company. The SEC charged the accounting firm BF Borgers and its owner, Benjamin F. Borgers, with “deliberate and systematic failures” in more than 1,500 audits. The charges include failing to abide by accounting rules, fabricating documentation to cover up its shortcomings, and falsely stating in audit reports that its work met audit standards. To settle the SEC charges, BF Borgers agreed to pay a $12 million fine while its owner agreed to pay a fine of $2 million, according to the SEC. Benjamin Borgers did not immediately return a call seeking comment. BF Borgers and Benjamin Borgers also agreed to permanent suspensions, effective immediately, that will prevent them handling SEC-related matters as accountants. The company had previously cycled through at least two other auditors — one that resigned the account in …

Distressed Sawfish Rescued in Florida Keys Dies After Aquarium Treatment

Distressed Sawfish Rescued in Florida Keys Dies After Aquarium Treatment

[ad_1] SARASOTA, Fla. (AP) — An endangered sawfish rescued last month in the Florida Keys after it was spotted acting erratically and swimming in circles has died as wildlife officials continue to search for what is causing fish to become distressed. The Mote Marine Laboratory & Aquarium in Sarasota said in a statement that the 11-foot (3.3-meter) smalltooth sawfish died Thursday at the facility, where it had been undergoing treatment. It was rescued April 5 off Cudjoe Key, part of an abnormal fish die-off that has killed at least 45 sawfish and other fish species as well. Authorities say a necropsy will be performed to possibly shed light on what is affecting the fish, which could take weeks or months to determine. It was humanely euthanized because its condition had deteriorated recently. “It was always our cautious hope to be able to utilize the best available science for the rehabilitation and release of the sawfish,” said Mote Marine President and CEO Michael Crosb y. “Sadly, even with our best efforts, the animal was too compromised …

California Disney Characters Are Unionizing Decades After Florida Peers. Hollywood Plays a Role

California Disney Characters Are Unionizing Decades After Florida Peers. Hollywood Plays a Role

[ad_1] Unlike the experiences of his peers at Disney’s parks in Orlando, Florida, where there is a much smaller talent pool, the performers who play Mickey Mouse, Goofy and other beloved Disney characters at the California parks aren’t always provided a consistent work schedule by the company. It’s among the reasons the California performers are organizing to be represented by a union now, more than four decades after their Florida counterparts did so. While Disney asks character performers to be available to work at any time, that demand isn’t always rewarded with scheduled work hours, the California performers said. “A lot of performers get the sense that if they don’t give their full availability, we won’t be in shows … and that will impact other jobs we need to sustain a living in this area,” said Elefante, who lives in Santa Ana, California. Earlier this month, the California character performers and the union organizing them, Actors’ Equity Association, said they had filed a petition for union recognition. Photos You Should See – April 2024 It’s …

Hawaii Lawmakers Take Aim at Vacation Rentals After Lahaina Wildfire Amplifies Maui Housing Crisis

Hawaii Lawmakers Take Aim at Vacation Rentals After Lahaina Wildfire Amplifies Maui Housing Crisis

[ad_1] HONOLULU (AP) — Amy Chadwick spent years scrimping and saving as a single mother of two to buy a house in the town of Lahaina on the Hawaiian island of Maui. But after a devastating fire leveled Lahaina in August and reduced Chadwick’s home to white dust, the cheapest rental she and her now-husband could find for their family and dogs cost $10,000 a month. Chadwick, a fine-dining server, moved to Florida where she could stretch her homeowners insurance dollars. She’s worried Maui’s exorbitant rental prices, driven in part by vacation rentals that hog a limited housing supply, will hollow out her tight-knit town. Most people in Lahaina work for hotels, restaurants and tour companies and can’t afford $5,000 to $10,000 a month in rent, she said. “You’re pushing out an entire community of service industry people. So no one’s going to be able to support the tourism that you’re putting ahead of your community,” Chadwick said by phone from her new home in Satellite Beach on Florida’s Space Coast. “Nothing good is going …

Attorneys Argue That Florida Law Discriminates Against Chinese Nationals Trying to Buy Homes

Attorneys Argue That Florida Law Discriminates Against Chinese Nationals Trying to Buy Homes

[ad_1] An attorney asked a federal appeals court on Friday to block a controversial Florida law signed last year that restricts Chinese citizens from buying real estate in much of the state, calling it discriminatory and a violation of the federal government’s supremacy in deciding foreign affairs. Attorney Ashley Gorski, representing four Chinese nationals who live in the state, told a three-judge panel from the 11th Circuit Court of Appeals that “Florida is unlawfully restricting housing for Chinese people.” The law bars Chinese nationals and citizens from other countries that Florida sees as a threat from buying property near military installations and other “critical infrastructure.” She compared it to long-overturned laws from the early 20th century that barred Chinese from buying property. “It is singling out people from particular countries in a way that is anathema to the equal protection guarantees that now exist,” Gorski told the court. But Nathan Forrester, the attorney representing the state, told judges Charles Wilson, Robert Luck and Barbara Lagoa that the law lines up with the Biden administration’s national …

CSX Profit Drops 10% Despite Railroad Delivering 3% More Freight in First Quarter

CSX Profit Drops 10% Despite Railroad Delivering 3% More Freight in First Quarter

[ad_1] CSX dealt with weather challenges and the closure of the Baltimore port as the railroad saw its first-quarter profit slip 10%, but it still managed to keep most of its customers happy with reliable service. The Jacksonville, Florida-based railroad said Wednesday that it earned $893 million, or 46 cents per share, in the first three months of the year as it handled 3% more freight. That’s down from $987 million, or 48 cents per share, a year ago. The results were slightly better than Wall Street predicted. The analysts surveyed by FactSet Research expected CSX to report earnings per share of 45 cents. CEO Joe Hinrichs said he was reminded again of one of the key lessons he’s learned in his first 18 months on the railroad: “There never really is an easy quarter.” Hinrichs said he was pleased the railroad was able to deliver consistent customer service that helped it attract more business. He said many of the markets CSX serves are seeing “favorable trends” and more customers are willing to give the …

Royal Caribbean Cabin Attendant Accused of Hiding Cameras in Bathrooms to Spy on Guests

Royal Caribbean Cabin Attendant Accused of Hiding Cameras in Bathrooms to Spy on Guests

[ad_1] FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A 34-year-old Royal Caribbean cruise employee is accused of hiding cameras inside bathrooms of passenger cabins to spy on guests. Arvin Joseph Mirasol was arrested Sunday on federal charges of production and possession of child pornography after the Symphony of the Seas arrived in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, according to a probable cause affidavit filed in the U.S. District Court of Florida. He also faces six counts of voyeurism in state court. A guest staying in a cabin where Mirasol was an attendant found a camera in the bathroom Feb. 25. It was “affixed to the counter underneath the sink,” according to the affidavit. She reported the incident to ship officials, who sent security to the room to investigate. Mirasol, who is a citizen of the Philippines, was detained on the ship until March 3, when it docked in Fort Lauderdale. He was questioned by agents from Homeland Security, Customs and Border Protection and the Broward Sheriff’s Office. Agents discovered “numerous videos of naked females” as well as images of …

Maryland Senate Approves Legal Protections for Gender-Affirming Care

Maryland Senate Approves Legal Protections for Gender-Affirming Care

[ad_1] ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Gender-affirming treatment in Maryland would be protected from criminal and civil actions brought by other states under a measure approved Tuesday by the state Senate. The Democrat-controlled Senate voted 33-13 for the measure that would provide the same legal protection offered by the state for abortions. It now goes to the House, where a similar bill has been introduced. The measure protects medical records of patients in Maryland from criminal, civil and administrative actions relating to gender-affirming care, if records were sought in investigations started in another state. For example, a judge would not be able to order someone in Maryland to provide testimony or produce documents in a case where prosecution or investigations are pending in another state. Maryland enacted a law to protect information relating to abortion procedures last year, in response to other states that banned or restricted abortions. “This legislation simply adds gender-affirming treatment to what is already in statute as legally protected health care, legally protected health care that we placed into statute last year …