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Darden Restaurants

Personnel note: James Kotas exiting FCCI for role with Darden restaurant chain

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James Kotas is leaving FCCI Insurance Group to lobby for Darden Concepts Inc., a national restaurant chain with brands that include The Capital Grille, LongHorn Steakhouse, and Olive Garden.

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Easter and Passover as brought to you by these lobbyists and political associations

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Grab your bonnet, pull out the seersucker and get ready for a good-old-fashion Easter egg hunt. Americans are expected to spend about $18.4 billion on Easter this year, according to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey. That projection is 6 percent higher than last year’s record of $17.3 billion and marks an all-time high in the 14 years the national organization has conducted the survey. The increase in spending is likely due to how late the holiday falls on the…

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Support for LGBT-protection bill grows among Legislature’s GOP members

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A measure that would prohibit employment, retail and other discrimination against people because of their sexual orientation or gender identity has picked up a second Republican sponsor in the Florida Senate: Travis Hutson of St. Augustine. The group behind the the “Florida Competitive Workforce Act” (HB 45/SB 120) announced the move in a news release Friday. The prime sponsors are Democratic state Sen. Joe Abruzzo of Boynton Beach and Key Largo Republican Holly Raschein in the House. Hutson now joins Clearwater’s Jack Latvala in sponsoring the Senate…

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Three Florida cities receive perfect score for LGBT anti-discrimination policies

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Three Florida cities, including St. Petersburg and Orlando, earned perfect scores in enacting policies to protect gay, lesbian and transgendered citizens from discrimination. In a statement Tuesday, Florida Businesses for a Competitive Workforce recognized Orlando, St. Petersburg and Wilton Manors (in Broward County), for receiving 100 percent on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation 2015 Municipal Equality Index (MEI). The municipalities were among 47 of 408 rated cities in the United States to achieve a perfect score. “We are proud of…

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10 Florida employers recognized as national Best Places to Work for LGBT employees

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Ten firms from the Florida Businesses for a Competitive Workforce Coalition received a perfect score this week on the annual Human Rights Campaign ranking of workplace equality. In an announcement Tuesday, the corporations scoring a 100 percent rating on the 2016 Corporate Equity Index include such Florida-based companies as Akerman LLP, AT&T, Florida Blue, Carlton Fields Jorden Burt, Darden Restaurants, Marriott, Office Depot, Tech Data, The Walt Disney Co., and Wells Fargo. Each firm earned a spot on HRC’s list…

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