Miami daily roundup: a $100,000 COVID-19 raffle, DeSantis pushes to investigate Facebook, and more

Best of South Florida

(MIAMI, Fla.) In South Florida news today, Miami's mayor is pushing to make the Turkey Point nuclear power plant the new hub for cryptocurrency mining; Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis is pushing to investigate Facebook; and one Palm Beach County city is considering offering a $100,000 raffle to encourage its residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

The following list contains Miami's top stories for Tuesday, September 28. Read on for details:

Florida's minimum wage will go up this week
Associated Press

Florida minimum wage workers will receive a pay hike this Thursday.

The current minimum wage across the state is currently $8.65 per hour, but on Thursday it will increase by $1.35 to $10 per hour. The pay increase comes nearly a year after 61% of Florida voters passed Amendment 2 in November as part of the 2020 general election, which provides the state minimum wage to rise over the next several years until it reaches $15 per hour.

Palm Beach County city could offer $100,000 raffle in exchange for proof of COVID-19 vaccination
Torrence Memorial Medical Center

The city of Boynton Beach is considering a big-money raffle as incentive for residents to get their COVID-19 vaccine. Those who prove they got their shot would be eligible to win the $100,000 prize.

The raffle is an effort to persuade reluctant segments of the population to get vaccinated. Incentives in other US cities have ranged from gift cards, to million-dollar prizes.

The city commission could vote on the mayor’s proposal as early as next week, and previously gave away $100 incentives to anyone — resident or not — who got vaccinated in Boynton Beach. The city had $50,000 to spend and still has $35,000 to give away.

Miami business leaders hope to stop Seminole Tribe gambling expansion in South Florida
Tampa Bay Times

This week, another federal lawsuit aimed at stopping sports betting in Florida was filed in the District of Columbia, this time with the backing of two of Miami’s most outspoken critics of gambling, developer Armando Codina and auto retailer Norman Braman.

The lawsuit asks the court to block the compact, claiming that it violates the federal Indian Gaming Regulatory Act. The lawsuit alleges that the federal government “improperly allowed the State of Florida to circumvent” the state Constitution by allowing the Seminole Tribe of Florida authorized off-reservation sports betting in violation of federal law.

In Florida, anyone over age 21 can start placing and collecting online wagers on sporting events “via the internet [or] web application” from anywhere in Florida, beginning on Oct. 15. In exchange, the tribe has agreed to guarantee payments to the state of at least $2.5 billion in revenue sharing over the first five years of the 30-year agreement. Unless the courts block the deal, the Seminole Tribe’s Hard Rock casinos in Broward and Hillsborough counties will also be allowed to become full Las Vegas-style casinos with the addition of roulette and craps.

Miami mayor pitches carbon-free nuclear energy for mining city's new crypto currency

If you haven't heard about Miami's new cryptocurrency, Miami Coin, you can learn about it here.

This week, in an effort to move the project along, Miami Mayor Francis Suarez is encouraging Bitcoin mining firms to open operations near South Florida's Turkey Point nuclear power plant. The idea: move miners move toward carbon-free nuclear energy. The Miami-based nuclear plant is owned by Florida Power & Light, and could offer cheap land to those looking to utilize the nuclear facility to host their mining rigs.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to investigate Facebook
WPLG Local 10

Florida's governor is asking Florida’s secretary of state to investigate Facebook by looking further into news article that reported the social media company gives preferential treatment to prominent people.

His gripe: to see if Facebook’s policies violated Florida election law. The Republican governor cited the Wall Street Journal article detailing Facebook’s practice of exempting high-profile users from some — or all — of its rules.

Miami's only historically Black college could close for good
Miami New Times

Florida Memorial University, a 142-year-old private institution, is at risk of losing accreditation.

Come next September, there's a chance that this campus — South Florida's only historically Black college and universities (HBCU) — will no longer be in operation, owing to a growing list of financial issues cited by its accrediting agency, the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). In July, the school was placed on a yearlong probation for failure to comply with financial-aid program duties. If parameters aren't met, the SACSCOC could revoke its privileges as soon as June 2022.

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