Part Of Miami Beach Zika Zone To Be Lifted

Part Of Miami Beach Zika Zone To Be Lifted

Florida officials removed part of Miami Beach from an active Zika transmission zone on Tuesday (Nov 22), saying more than 45 days had passed since the last local case of the mosquito-borne virus that has been linked to microcephaly, a rare birth defect.

Governor Rick Scott announced today that Florida set another record in tourism by welcoming the highest amount of visitors of any nine months in the state's history with 85 million visitors.

Mosquitoes began spreading the virus this summer in Florida, bringing local Zika transmission to the continental United States.

Scott in a statement said the record numbers show how well Visit Florida, the state's tourism marketing arm, is doing its job.

Since Scott became governor he has pushed for increased state spending on Visit Florida up to almost $80 million. About 2.8 million overseas visitors came to Florida in the third quarter, representing a modest increase of 0.9 percent, tracking with Pizam's projection. Incoming House Speaker Richard Corcoran, R-Land O' Lakes, has also questioned whether the state should continue paying as much as it has been on tourism promotion.

In the third quarter of 2016, the state estimates 23.6 million of its visitors came from within the country.

"It's good news for the state of Florida that we have seen those increases statewide", said Jack Wert, Collier County's tourism director. Get twice-daily updates on what the St. Louis business community is talking about.

Fed rate hike predictions support dollar but weigh on stocks
Share with Us - We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article, and smart, constructive criticism. The ICE Dollar Index, which measures the dollar against six peers, was up 0.3% to 101.18.

That third quarter 2016 number of 26.9 million is especially telling in regard to the resiliency of Florida's tourism industry.

Through the third quarter, more than 1.8 million rooms nights had been booked in Collier County, a decline of 4.3 percent over the year.

The new numbers mean Florida is on track for a record-breaking tourism year.

In the first quarter, occupancy in the county fell 4 percent over the year. "So overall we would say that our performance has been similar to the state's".

In Flagler County, bed-tax collections were up 2.8 percent to $2.1 million for the 2014-2015 fiscal year that ended on September 30, according to the county's Tourist Development Office.

In March, Pinellas County collected $7 million in bed taxes for the first time and is on pace to collect $50 million by the end of the year. Year-to-date, passenger traffic is up 3.2 percent from the same time last year. Monday's announcement puts Florida just 30 million tourists away from that number.

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