Issues of Interest

CANUCK IN SPACE The Canadian Space Agency and NASA will be sending a team of four astronauts to embark on a 10-day flight around the moon. Scheduled for November, 2024, the Artemis II crew will include three Americans and one Canadian.

HURRICANE NAMES The World Meteorological Organization will no longer use Fiona and Ian in their rotation of hurricane names. They are joining a list of 96 names that have been retired since 1953, the year the current naming system began. Other notable names that are no longer used include Camille, Hugo, Andrew, Katrina, Matthew and Michael. Forty-four names have been retired since 2000. Names are retired for particularly deadly and destructive storms. We know that Floridians experiencing these storms will be glad these will never be ‘organized’ again! 

CITIZENS PROPERTY INSURANCE Florida’s insurer of last resort, Citizens, now has over 1.2 million policies. Compare that to the number in effect one year ago in 2021 – 569,868 policies. The influx is due to the ever-growing list of private insurance companies leaving the state.

AT-RISK CHILDREN HELP The Florida Department of Juvenile Justice’s programHope Florida A Pathway to Potential has broadened its mission to provide support for at-risk children and their families. Forty Hope Navigators (2 in each of the twenty judicial circuits) will be directly involved in supporting youth and their families. Services will be available for families dealing with truancy, runaways and negative peer relationships. More information may be found here. Additionally, in Hope Florida’s effort to partner with the private sector, Walgreens has committed to implement changes in employment opportunities, such as flexible hours and managerial track options. Through CarePortal and the Hope Florida Fund, Walgreens will help stock local nonprofits with supplies. TECO Energy has contributed $100,000 to the Hope Florida Fund to support nonprofits.

INFRASTRUCTURE FUNDING Four communities were awarded funding through the Rural Infrastructure Fund, Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)-CV and the Small Cities CDBG program for projects that will expand job opportunities and strengthen infrastructure. The Town of Callahan, Haines City, City of Labelle and City of Starke were awarded the funding to help with water treatment facilities, community center upgrades, building sidewalks and renovating low-income housing.