By Timothy Aeppel

(Reuters) – Florida is one of the five best states in the nation in which to do business, according to a new survey. It’s also one of the five worst, according to the same survey, thanks to COVID-19.

Every three years, Development Counsellors International, an economic development marketing firm, surveys executives to rank business climates in the various U.S. states. For the first time since they began doing the survey in 1996, a single state landed in the top five in both categories: Florida. The DCI report was released on Tuesday.

“The rationale for Florida being on both the best and worst lists was entirely due to the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Julie Curtin, president of DCI’s economic development practice. “In our follow-up questions to corporate executives about the states they selected, the majority of the corporate executives who selected Florida said that the state’s handling of the

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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — At least a quarter of the 28,000 layoffs planned for Disney’s parks division will come from Florida, according to a letter the company filed with state and local officials last week.



FILE - In this March 13, 2020 file photo, visitors take photos at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., the last day the park was open due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Theme park industry leaders in California say they aren't pleased with proposed reopening guidance being considered by Gov. Gavin Newsom's administration. Erin Guerrero, executive director of the California Attractions and Parks Association, said amusement park leaders wanted changes to a draft they reviewed on Thursday, Oct. 1 and asked Newsom to continue conversations with industry leaders before finalizing the rules. (AP Photo/Amy Taxin, File)


© Provided by Associated Press
FILE – In this March 13, 2020 file photo, visitors take photos at Disneyland in Anaheim, Calif., the last day the park was open due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Theme park industry leaders in California say they aren’t pleased with proposed reopening guidance being considered by Gov. Gavin Newsom’s administration. Erin Guerrero, executive director of the California Attractions and Parks Association, said amusement park leaders wanted changes to a draft they reviewed on Thursday, Oct. 1 and asked Newsom to continue conversations with industry leaders before finalizing the rules. (AP Photo/Amy Taxin, File)

The letter said that at least 6,390 nonunion Disney employees in Florida will be laid off starting

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ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — At least a quarter of the 28,000 layoffs planned for Disney’s parks division will come from Florida, according to a letter the company filed with state and local officials last week.

The letter said that at least 6,390 nonunion Disney employees in Florida will be laid off starting in early December. The number of Florida layoffs, though, could grow as the company negotiates terms with a coalition of unions that represents 43,000 employees at Walt Disney World.

“Due to the continuing business impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, we have made the very difficult decision to reduce our workforce,” Jim Bowden, a Disney vice president of employee relations said in the letter.

Disney officials said last week that two-thirds of the planned layoffs involve part-time workers and they ranged from salaried employees to hourly workers.

Disney’s parks closed last spring as the pandemic started spreading in the

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  • Florida’s health department recorded 3,266 new coronavirus cases on Tuesday, a massive jump from 738 new daily cases it recorded on Monday.
  • Florida’s cases had been declining, but Tuesday marked the highest single-day total since September 19, bringing the state’s total count to 704,568.
  • Gov. Ron DeSantis lifted all restrictions on restaurants and small businesses at the end of last week.
  • Reports showed large crowds gathering throughout the state over the weekend.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Health officials in Florida reported 3,266 new COVID-19 cases on Tuesday, up from the previous day’s new case tally of 738, bringing the state’s total case count to 704,568.

Officials also reported 106 new deaths, bringing the state’s total to 14,313 since March.

Despite being a coronavirus hotspot for most of the summer, Florida had seen a decline in cases during most of September and hadn’t seen more than 3,000 cases

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Phase 3: Eat, drink and be wary | Sept. 26

It will be a lean winter

I am a Florida resident and I vote in every single election. I have been up north with my children for several months. The recent announcement lifting coronavirus restrictions makes it impossible for me to return anytime soon. Many of my friends and relatives will not be returning either.

Clearly, lives lost are not a meaningful metric to Gov. Ron DeSantis, but lost money is. So let me speak in a language he understands: I was planning major outdoor renovations and purchases. I enjoy safe take-out meals from area restaurants (and tip very generously). Instead, my money and sales taxes are supporting businesses in the Midwest.

DeSantis’ actions have directly cost St. Petersburg business owners and workers tens of thousands of dollars of my money. Multiply this by the many other snowbirds who will

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ACROSS FLORIDA — Oviedo, Florida is one of the 50 best places in the United States to live, according to a new ranking by Money magazine. The annual list, released this week, ranks communities based on factors such as safety, cost of living and diversity.

Out of communities on this year’s list, Oviedo ranked 43rd. The Seminole County city known for its wild chickens is only about 20 miles from Orlando.

To determine this year’s Best Places To Live, Money analyzed a list of 1,890 communities with a population of at least 25,000. The publication then analyzed 115 separate data points on each community’s economy, housing market, education system, employment, weather and more.

Reporters then researched each location to ensure the statistics were an accurate representation of each community.

Money added several additional factors this year to account for the coronavirus pandemic and recent unrest stemming from racial inequality. The

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By ALEXANDRA OLSON, AP Business Writer

Kathryn Ross was one of just two Black women in Accenture’s Miami office when she first joined the global consulting firm nearly 27 years ago. Now a managing partner, Ross was tapped in December to create the inclusion and diversity agenda for Accenture’s venture capital investment arm.

Five months later, the police killing of George Floyd convulsed the country. The coronavirus pandemic was taking a disproportionate toll on Black-owned small businesses, which have been twice as likely to close during the pandemic as businesses overall, according to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York. The economic crisis widened the unemployment gap between Black and white Americans.

It was a galvanizing time for Ross, the mother of two boys aged 11 and 13. Rather than simply setting diversity goals, she resolved to create an initiative to bring venture capital to Black-owned businesses, which only receive

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ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Florida Community Loan Fund, a statewide nonprofit lending institution, announced it was awarded $825,750 by the U.S. Treasury Department Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund. FCLF will use the award to help grow its lending over the next three years, delivering $74 million in new financing and providing affordable housing and essential social services in underserved Florida communities.

As a statewide CDFI, FCLF serves the third most populated state in the US, with a population of 21+ million. Of Florida households, 16 percent live in poverty, and an additional 32 percent are considered working poor. With the CDFI Fund award, FCLF continues its history of leading capital into low income, high poverty communities and delivering flexible financing that maximizes opportunities for people and places outside of the economic mainstream.

“The need for affordable housing and social services in Florida has never been

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BOCA RATON, Fla.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–
Fiduciary Trust International, a global wealth manager and wholly-owned subsidiary of Franklin Templeton, announces that Michael Schiff, managing director, has been elected chair of the Gold Coast Florida branch of the Society of Trust & Estate Practitioners (STEP).

Mr. Schiff, who was elected vice chair of STEP Gold Coast Florida in October 2019, will continue to focus on growing branch membership and increasing awareness of STEP and its well-respected Trust & Estate Practitioner (TEP) designation among trust and estate planning professionals in South Florida. STEP Gold Coast Florida organizes educational and networking programs to help keep members up-to-date on changes in multijurisdictional law and the latest domestic and international planning trends. Mr. Schiff will help procure speakers from the trust and estate planning industry for these events.

STEP Gold Coast Florida’s founding board members include Gail E. Cohen,

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  • Gov. Ron DeSantis on Friday announced that all restaurants and small businesses statewide can reopen and operate at full capacity. 
  • DeSantis has championed opening businesses in the state as a move to restrengthen the Florida economy,  but the decision comes as the number of confirmed cases in the state continues to rise.
  • “We’re not closing anything going forward,” DeSantis said Friday at a news briefing.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis ordered on Friday the total reopening of all restaurants and businesses, a decision that’s been met with backlash as the coronavirus continues to spread statewide.

All restaurants and small businesses in the state can operate at full capacity from this point onward, according to the order.

The governor’s order also ensures that local officials are unable to direct restaurants and businesses to close or operate at less than half-capacity without specifying a reason.

“We’re

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