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TALLAHASSEE – Governor Charlie Crist today encouraged Floridians to learn how to receive a Florida ENERGY STAR® Residential HVAC rebate by visiting www.rebates.com/floridahvac. Beginning Monday, August 30, 2010, Florida homeowners who upgrade their air conditioning systems can qualify to receive a $1,500 rebate. The program will end on Friday, December 31, 2010, or when the $15 million in rebate funds are depleted. These purchases are expected to increase employment in the air conditioning industry and to create new green jobs for home energy efficiency raters.

“I encourage Floridians to learn about the state and federal financial rebate incentives and consider upgrading their residential air conditioning system beginning August 30,” Governor Crist said. “This investment will benefit consumers, businesses and our entire state economy, as well as increase energy savings and improve the value of many Florida homes.”

Miami-Dade home owners have another opportunity to get two free trees courtesy of the Adopt-a-Tree Program. Saturday, August 28th, marks the third Adopt-a-Tree give a way for the 2010 season, and this event will be greener than ever, because preregistered residents will be eligible to receive a FREE energy savings tool kit valued at over $100 as part of their participation in the first-ever residential Home Energy Savings Workshop hosted by the Miami-Dade County Office of Sustainability. This workshop is being held in partnership with the non-profit Dream in Green to educate residents on energy efficiency and conservation and provide homeowners with the information, resources and incentives to reduce their utility costs. The free energy savings toolkit will include items such as a programmable thermostat, hot water gage, LED sensor nightlight and compact florescent light bulbs (CFLs). To register for the Home Energy Savings Workshop, residents need to call 3-1-1 or visit http://green.miamidade.gov; space is limited to 50 participants.

Seasonally adjusted numbers show that Miami-Dade County’s unemployment rate for July 2010 was 12.3 percent.  This was an increase of 0.1 percent compared to June 2010 (12.2%) and an increase of 1.1 percent compared to July 2009 (11.2%).  The numbers also show the Florida unemployment rate at 11.5, a 0.1 percent increase compared to June 2010, and the U.S. unemployment rate at 9.5 percent, unchanged from June 2010.

This increase can be attributed to students graduating from high school, college and university summer classes, new out of state students entering the area, as well as people reentering the workforce who might have previously given up on finding a job. In addition, the Miami-Dade County Public School system reduced its workforce during the summer recess and the jobs created by the Census process are winding down.

Miami Dade College’s (MDC) Homestead Campus will host a “Woman of Empowerment Remembrance Day” event at two convenient times, 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 9, 2010, featuring author and motivational speaker Michelle Rosado. The event is free and open to the public.

Rosado is the co-author of Pursuing Your Destiny, a book based on her escape from the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. As a successful business owner, professional speaker, and coach, Rosado has inspired people around the world with her message of hope and perseverance. She has received a Lifetime Achievement Award from New York's Madison's Who's Who, and is recognized throughout the business world as a woman of empowerment.