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Florida in focus: Florida defies big-state financial curse

By   /   July 12, 2017  /   News  /   1 Comment

Florida defies big-state financial curse

Large states like Illinois (49th in our Mercatus Center state fiscal health rankings), New York (39th), California (43rd) and Pennsylvania (45th) struggle financially compared with smaller states. Even business-obsessed Texas (23rd) has long-term, pension-fueled concerns. But at No. 1, Florida — similar in size and economic potential to Illinois — defies the big-state curse.

Miami-Dade’s mayor proposes to cut transit funding, reduce lawn mowing and leave more than 1,000 positions open in 2018 as the county grapples with a slowing economy and a looming increase in the deductions homeowners can apply to their property tax bills.

Mayor Carlos Gimenez said targeted cost cutting will allow Miami-Dade to maintain flat property tax rates at a time of rising property values but weak returns from sales taxes, a fiscal divide that has some departments awash in cash in 2018 and others grappling with shortfalls.

Space Florida official to Trump administration: Appoint space leaders

Vice President Mike Pence’s optimistic speech at Kennedy Space Center last week needs some muscle behind it, space industry experts and officials say.

A crucial first step? Filling important leadership positions.

NASA has been operating with an acting administrator and the administration without a national science adviser since President Donald Trump took office Jan. 20.

Still, experts say a re-formed National Space Council, defunct since 1993, and growing interest in private space efforts are reasons to be encouraged.

NASA “will continue to operate well but what you want to do is put someone on the job permanently to create some stability,” Space Florida President and CEO Frank DiBello said.

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