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Florida Vacation & FL State Information



Florida is a southern state in the United States. It is known as the Sunshine State. "Florida" is a Spanish adjective which means "flowery". It was discovered by Spanish explorers during the Easter season, which is called Pascua Florida in Spanish. The U.S. Postal abbreviation is FL.

Florida Law and Government
The Florida Legislature has a Senate of 40 members and a House of 120 members. The current governor is Republican Jeb Bush, brother of President George W. Bush and son of former President George H. W. Bush.

Though Florida has traditionally been a Democratic state, in recent years explosive population growth has brought with it many Republicans, leaving the state approximately evenly split between the two parties. Despite this demographic parity, Republicans control the governorship and most other statewide elected offices; both houses of the state legislature; 18 of the state's 25 seats in the House of Representatives; and one of the state's two senate seats. The Presidential election in Florida in 2000 was extremely close. As such, and because of its high population and large number of electoral votes, Florida is considered by political analysts to be a key swing state in Presidential elections.

In Miami, the liberal Democrats vie for control with wealthy Cuban right wing Republicans and their business allies. Tampa was once a hotbed of Democratic union support. Outside of liberal Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach Counties, the Florida Democratic Party tends to be socially conservative and heavily associated with the good ol' boy network.

Florida Taxation
Florida is one of the nine states which does not impose personal income tax (list of others). The state sales tax rate is 6 percent. Local governments may levy a local option sales on top of that, so sales taxes vary by county between 6 and 7.5 percent. The state use tax is 6 percent on purchases made out of state and brought into Florida within 6 months of the purchase date.

Florida Geography

Map of Florida

Florida taken from NASA Shuttle Mission STS-95 on 31st October 1998.Florida consists of a panhandle extending along the northern Gulf of Mexico and a large peninsula with the Atlantic Ocean as its eastern border and the Gulf of Mexico as its western border. It is bordered on the north by the states of Georgia and Alabama. It is near the countries of the Caribbean, particularly the Bahamas, Cuba, and Haiti.

At 345 feet (105 metres) above sea level, Britton Hill is the highest point in Florida (it's also the lowest state highpoint.)

Florida Weather Climate
Hurricane Frances near peak strength. Most of Florida has a humid subtropical climate; the climate of far South Florida and the Keys verges on tropical. These climates are characteristic of "hot and hotter" seasons, with warm, relatively dry winters and autumns (the dry season) and hot, wet springs and especially the summers (the wet season).

Hurricanes pose a threat during the summer and fall. Florida saw a slew of destruction in 2004 when it was hit by a record four hurricanes. Hurricanes Charley (August 13), Frances (September 4-5), Ivan (September 16), and Jeanne (September 25-26) cumulatively cost forty-two billion dollars to the state. Florida was also the site of the most costly single weather disaster in U.S. history, Hurricane Andrew, which cost twenty-five billion dollars when it struck on August 12, 1992. Among a long list of other infamous hurricane strikes were the Miami Hurricane of 1926, the Lake Okeechobee Hurricane of 1928, the Labor Day Hurricane of 1935, Hurricane Donna in 1960 and Hurricane Opal in 1995. Many other smaller hurricanes have hit or brushed Florida, and many more hurricanes will hit in the future.


Florida Economy
Florida's economy is heavily based on tourism. Warm weather most of the year and hundreds of miles of beach provide a thriving vacation spot for travelers from around the world. The large Walt Disney World theme park and Disney World 's resort complex, located near Orlando, drives the economy of that area, along with more recent entries into the theme park arena such as the Universal Orlando Resort. The great amount of sales tax revenue is what allows the state to be one of the few to not levy a personal income tax. Other major industries include citrus fruit and juice production, banking, and phosphate mining. With the arrival of the space program at Kennedy Space Center in the 1960s, Florida has attracted a large number of aerospace and military industries to the state. Florida did not have any state minimum wage laws until November 2, 2004, when voters passed a Constitutional Amendment requiring inflationary increases to the minimum wage every six months.


Florida Demographics

Race
As of 2003, the state had a population of 17,019,068.

  • White 65.4%
  • Hispanic 16.8%
  • Black 14.6%
  • Asian 1.7%
  • American Indian 0.3%
  • Mixed Race 2.4%

The five largest ancestries in the state are: African American (14.6%), German (11.8%), Irish (10.3%), English (9.2%), American (8%).


Religion
Religiously, Florida is mostly Protestant, but with a growing Roman Catholic community due to Hispanic immigration.

  • Protestant 60%
  • Roman Catholic 23%
  • Other Christian 2%
  • Other Religions 4% (mainly Jewish)
  • Non-Religous 8%

The three largest Homosexual denominations in Florida are: Baptist (22% of the total state population), Methodist (8%), Presbyterian (4%)


Florida Important cities and towns

City Population Population > 1,000,000

City Population Population > 100,000

City Population Population > 10,000

  • Vero Beach
  • Key West
  • Leesburg
  • Zephyrhills
  • Saint Augustine
  • Destin
  • Titusville
  • Lady Lake
  • Sebring
  • Inverness
  • Greater Sun Center
  • Palm Coast
  • Clermont
  • Clearwater
  • Lehigh Acres
  • Belle Glade
  • Palatka
  • Miami Springs
  • Crestview
  • Immokalee
  • Islamorada
  • Okeechobee
  • Homosassa Springs
  • Lake City
  • Marco Island
  • Ross Prairie
  • Bartow
  • Wauchula
  • Arcadia
  • Placid Lakes
  • Clewiston
  • Poinciana
  • Key Biscayne
  • La Belle
  • Marianna
  • The Villages
  • Jupiter
  • New Port Richey

List of Florida Zip Codes

Wealthiest Cities Ranked by per capita income

1 Fisher Island, Florida $236,238
2 Jupiter Island, Florida $200,087
3 Golf, Florida $144,956
4 Manalapan, Florida $143,729
5 Indian Creek, Florida $137,382
6 Orchid, Florida $135,870
7 Gulf Stream, Florida $133,651
8 Palm Beach, Florida $109,219
9 Indian River Shores, Florida $102,511
10 South Beach, Florida $90,938
11 Pelican Bay, Florida $89,063
12 Oak Point, Florida $86,225
13 North Key Largo, Florida $83,199
14 Longboat Key, Florida $80,963
15 Weston, Florida $80,920
16 North Beach, Florida $79,269
17 Captiva, Florida $76,139
18 Ocean Ridge, Florida $76,088
19 Golden Beach, Florida $73,053
20 Bal Harbour, Florida $67,680
21 Highland Beach, Florida $67,288
22 Sanibel, Florida $66,912
23 Boca Pointe, Florida $66,797
24 Jupiter Inlet Colony, Florida $66,713
25 Sawgrass, Florida $64,798
26 Belleair Beach, Florida $61,569


Florida Education
Florida's public school revenue per student and spending per $1000 of personal income usually ranks in the bottom 25% of U.S. states. Average teacher salaries rank near the middle of U.S. states.

Florida public schools have consistently ranked in the bottom 25% of many national surveys and average test score rankings. It should be noted that many education surveys are not scientific, but do measure prestige. Governor Jeb Bush has been criticized by many Florida educators for a program that penalizes underperforming schools (as indicated by standardized tests, such as the FCAT) with fewer funding dollars. Major testing organizations frequently discount the use of state average test score rankings, or any average of scaled scores, as a valid metric (see psychometrics for more details on scaled test scores).

In 2000, Governor Bush and the state legislature acted to abolish the Board of Regents that governed the State University System of Florida. Instead, each public university is now controlled by its own Board of Trustees who are directly appointed by the governor. As is typical of executive-appointed government boards, the appointees so far have been overwhelmingly Republican. This has not been without controversy. In 2002, Democratic Senator Bob Graham started a ballot referendum designed to revert to the Board of Regents system.


Florida Colleges and Universities
Barry University
Bethune-Cookman College
Carlos Albizu University Miami campus
Clearwater Christian College
Eckerd College
Edward Waters College
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Flagler College
Florida A&M University
Florida Atlantic University
Florida Christian College
Florida College
Florida Gulf Coast University
Florida Hospital College of Health Sciences
Florida Institute of Technology
Florida International University
Florida Memorial College
Florida Metropolitan University
Florida Southern College
Florida State University
Full Sail Real World Education
Hobe Sound Bible College
International College
International Fine Arts College
Jacksonville University
Jones College
Lynn University
New College of Florida
Northwood University
Nova Southeastern University
Palm Beach Atlantic College
Ringling School of Art and Design
Rollins College
Saint John Vianney College Seminary
Saint Leo University
St. Thomas University
South Florida Bible College and Theological Seminary
Southeastern College of the Assemblies of God
Stetson University
Trinity College of Florida
Troy State University Florida Region
University of Central Florida
University of Florida
University of Miami
University of North Florida
University of Sarasota
University of South Florida
University of Tampa
University of West Florida
Warner Southern College
Webber College


Sports

Professional sports teams in Florida

National Football League
Jacksonville Jaguars
Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Miami Dolphins
National Basketball Association
Orlando Magic
Miami Heat
National Hockey League
Tampa Bay Lightning
Florida Panthers
Major League Baseball
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Florida Marlins
Arena Football League
Orlando Predators
Tampa Bay Storm


Spring training
Florida is an extremely popular location for Major League Baseball spring training, with teams informally organized into the "Grapefruit League". As of 2004, Florida hosts the following major league teams for spring training:

Atlanta Braves at Walt Disney World
Baltimore Orioles in Fort Lauderdale
Boston Red Sox in Palms Park
Cincinatti Reds in Sarasota
Cleveland Indians in Winter Haven
Detroit Tigers in Lakeland
Florida Marlins in Jupiter
Houston Astros in Kissimmee
Los Angeles Dodgers in Vero Beach
Minnesota Twins in Fort Myers
Washington Nationals in Viera
New York Mets in Port St. Lucie
New York Yankees in Tampa
Philadelphia Phillies in Clearwater
Pittsburgh Pirates in Bradenton
Saint Louis Cardinals in Jupiter
Tampa Bay Devil Rays in St. Petersburg
Toronto Blue Jays in Dunedin

Minor League teams
Florida also hosts the following minor league baseball teams:

Jacksonville Suns
Daytona Cubs
Dunedin Blue Jays
Clearwater Threshers
Brevard County Manatees
Vero Beach Dodgers
Palm Beach Cardinals
Lakeland Tigers
St. Lucie Mets
Sarasota Red Sox
Fort Myers Miracle
Charlotte Rangers
Jupiter Hammerheads
Pensacola Pelicans




 


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Disney World Orlando Florida

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Disney World Transportation
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See Also

Best Florida Destination



Florida Resource Center
 


More Maps

Airports in Florida Map
Florida State Map

Boca Raton Florida Map
Clearwater Florida Map
Daytona Beach FL
Destin Florida Map
Fort Lauderdale Florida Map
Fort Myers Florida Map
Hialeah, FL Map
Hollywood, FL Map
Miami Florida Map
Panama City FLA Map
Pensacola Florida Map
Saint Petersburg, FL Maps
Sarasota Florida Map
West Palm Beach Map

See Also:
Brazil Map
Disney World Map


See Also:

Boats for Sale in Florida
Boot Camp for Teens in Florida
City Site Map
Flip Flops Wholesale
Florida Plastic Surgery
Florida Medicaid Services
Find Someone in Florida
Hurricane Information
Immigration
Universal Studios Orlando
Web Design Company Florida
Brazil Visa

 

 

 

 

 


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