State Senator Debbie mayfield – Mayfield Minute 11/28/2021

Good Morning!

This upcoming week, we will conclude our last interim committee week before Session begins January 11th, 2022. Committee weeks are a great opportunity for legislators to hear updates from state agencies and proposed legislation from members prior to the start of the annual legislative session.
In this edition of the Mayfield Minute we have included information on Florida’s unemployment rate, safety tips for holiday shopping, upcoming events, and local stories.
I consider it a great honor to represent District 17. Please share this link with your friends and family so that they too can sign up for the Mayfield Minute.
If you or someone you know needs my assistance, please do not hesitate to contact my office. My staff and I are here to serve you!

Statewide Updates

Florida Unemployment Rate Drops to 4.6 Percent
Florida continues to make economic progress with more job growth, labor force increases, and a decline in the unemployment rate. Florida has experienced 12 consecutive months of labor force increases with a growth of 29,000 over the month. Florida’s labor force growth represents a 5.8% increase over the year, which is significantly higher than the national rate of 0.5%. Florida’s unemployment rate, currently at 4.6%, also decreased by 0.2 percentage points from the revised September 2021 rate of 4.8%.
In total, Florida has gained 1,111,000 private sector jobs since April 2020, which represents 89% of jobs lost during the pandemic. Florida continues to see significant increases in labor force, growing 579,000 over the year as Floridians gain confidence in returning to work. Data in the month of October indicates that there continues to be more job opportunities available for Floridians throughout the state, with more than 518,000 jobs posted online.
Private-sector industries gaining the most jobs over the month were:
  • Leisure and Hospitality with 16,600 new jobs
  • Trade, Transportation, and Utilities with 10,400 new jobs
  • Education and Health Services with 6,600 new jobs
  • Other Services with 4,200 new jobs
  • Professional and Business Services with 3,700 new jobs
If you are in search of work or new job opportunities, we encourage you to visit the CareerSource Florida network for assistance.
 Safe Shopping Tips for the Holiday Season
Attorney General Ashley Moody is asking shoppers to take precautions this holiday season. Attorney General Moody suggests the following safety tips for consumers:
  • Avoid shopping alone as thieves are less likely to target a group of people. Invite family and friends to join when shopping in public stores;
  • If shopping with children, develop a child separation plan. Choose a designated meeting place and prepare children to be able to talk to mall security or store employees for help;
  • Park vehicles in well-lit areas and do not leave valuable items visible in a car. Cover merchandise or store it securely in a trunk. Always double-check to make sure a parked car is locked;
  • Stay aware of surroundings. Watch for loiterers and alert security of any suspicious activities; and
  • Secure shopping bags, purses and other personal items when traveling in crowds of people.
To view the 2021 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide, click here.

Constituent of the Week

Our constituent of the week is President & CEO of the Greater Palm Bay Chamber of Commerce, Nancy Peltonen. Ms. Peltonen is an expert in strategic planning and marketing management. Prior to assuming her role as President and CEO, she obtained a Bachelor’s Degree in Marketing from Lakehead University and a Master’s Degree in Management from The College of St. Scholastica. She began her career as an intern and advanced to Branch Manager of the multi-million dollar store, Shoppers Drug Mart, in Toronto, Canada.
Following her experiences in Canada, she was the Director of Marketing and Fundraising at Serene Harbour in Melbourne, which provides emergency shelter, 24/7 confidential hotlines, counseling services, transportation, relocation assistance, support groups, legal advocacy, outreach programs, referrals, and assistance programs for survivors of domestic violence. Through various fundraising initiatives throughout her 14 years at Serene Harbour, she helped the center raise over $1 million dollars to help domestic violence victims throughout the Brevard County Community.
In her role as President & CEO of the chamber, Ms. Peltonen has exponentially grown membership, increased programs to benefit Chamber members, implemented signature events, and advocated on behalf of the business community at the local, state, and federal levels.
Ms. Peltonen has also been recognized for her leadership and community involvement. These recognitions include the Community Excellence Award from the State Small Business Expo in 2017; the Heart of the Community Award from the Business Acceleration Summit in 2016, the Woman of Excellence Award from the Melbourne Regional Chamber of the East Coast in 2013, and being chosen as Woman of the Year for ABWA Space Coast Women’s Express Network in Melbourne for 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014 years just to name a few. Additionally, she volunteers for local organizations such as the Maxwell King Center, Zonta Club of Melbourne, Brevard Family Partnership, Women’s Council of Realtors, March of Dimes, Space Coast Women’s Express ABWA, The Cancer Care Foundation, CivMil Golf Tournament, Bras for a Cause, the Exchange Club and Space Coast Honor flight among others.
Thank you, Nancy Peltonen, for your continued support of Brevard’s business community and your relentless acts of volunteerism and service. District 17 and our great state are privileged to have you as a member of the community. 

Upcoming Events

City of Palm Bay Holiday Light Parade
The 2021 City of Palm Bay Holiday Light Parade will be held on Saturday, December 4 beginning at 6 pm. The 3-mile parade will leave the Eastern Florida State College campus and head north on San Filippo Drive. It will then move west on Malabar Road and end at Minton Road in front of City Hall.
For more information, click here.

District 17 Highlights

Brevard County
MikeyStrong Foundation 5k Run
I was honored to attend the memorial 5k to celebrate the memory of local resident, Mikey Goodwin. Mikey was a vibrant 19 year old student when diagnosed with Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma (DIPG), which is a rare and deadly form of brain cancer. The memorial 5k honors Mikey and others who have lost their life to this deadly disease by raising funds to help others battling DIPG. 
DIPG is one of the rarest and most aggressive cancers affecting 150 to 300 patients yearly in the United States. There is currently no cure for DIPG, however, programs such as BTIP (Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program) at the University of Florida are currently researching treatments. Mikey Goodwin was a patient in this study. Additionally, initiatives such as The Cure Starts Now and the DIPG Collaborative are the biggest funders of DIPG research.
For more information on how you can help, click here.
Indian River County
 Indian River County Reopens 43rd Ave and State Road 60
Indian River County’s Public Works Department announced that 43rd Avenue between 16th Street and 19th Street (the section south of SR 60) was reopened on Wednesday, November 24. This was the second and final planned closure of 43rd Avenue to complete the necessary roadway reconstruction and improvements for this project. 

Contact Information
Melbourne Office
900 East Strawbridge Avenue
Melbourne, FL 32901
(321) 409-2025
Tallahassee Office
330 Senate Office Building
404 South Monroe Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-1100
(850) 487-5017
Vero Beach Office
Administration Building B
1801 27th Street
Vero Beach, FL 32960
(772) 226-1970