FYI Miami: September 24, 2020
Below are some of the FYIs in this week’s edition. The entire content of this week’s FYIs and Insider sections is available by subscription only. To subscribe click here.
JOBLESS RATE FALLS: After four months of double-digit unemployment, Miami-Dade’s rate dropped to 8.1% in August – still a long way from the 1.5% rate in January and February, the best on record, before the pandemic hit, new US Bureau of Labor Statistics figures show. The county counted 109,265 persons unemployed in August; in February it was 20,390. But the number of persons at work in August, 1,242,545, was 141,616 fewer than February, as the number of people in the labor force fell by 52,741 – people neither working nor seeking jobs but not counted officially as unemployed. Statewide, the highest unemployment rates were 15.1% in Osceola County, 11.6% in Orange County and 9.3% in Broward. Miami-Dade ranked as seventh highest in unemployment percentage among Florida’s 67 counties.
ALTON BAY DELAYED: Developers of a condominium proposed for 4000 Alton Road will have to wait a little longer for Miami Beach commissioners to decide on their request for height relief. The commission was to hear three items concerning the project and requested zoning changes last week, but all were continued to Oct. 14. The city’s planning board last month unanimously rejected the 140-foot-tall design, though members of the Mayor’s 41st Street Committee, an advisory board dedicated to revamping the street, supported the project, saying it would probably bring business to the area. Multiple people who said they were city residents spoke at each meeting to oppose the tower, though a few did support the plan. According to The Real Deal, current area zoning allows a building no taller than 85 feet.
BLACK AFFAIRS TEAM: Miami Beach commissioners voted unanimously last week to form a Black Affairs Advisory Committee. “We have so many committees that properly address different cultural groups,” Mayor Dan Gelber said, “and it seemed startling that we didn’t have an African American affairs committee.” Advisory committees representing the city’s women, seniors, LGBTQ+ community and more, he noted, have already been established. Heather Shaw, city assistant director of tourism and culture, said public feedback regarding the possible committee was positive.
GAS PRICES DIP: Miami gas prices fell 2.9 cents per gallon in the past week to average $2.14 today, according to GasBuddy’s daily survey. Gas prices in Miami are 5.3 cents per gallon higher than a month ago and 36.1 cents per gallon lower than a year ago. The national average price of gasoline fell a half cent per gallon in the past week and averages $2.16, down 1.7 cents per gallon from a month ago and 49.7 cents per gallon lower than a year ago.