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On Tuesday, April 6th, State Representative Anitere (R-Miami, 114) passed HB 469, reinstating Florida’s Back-to-School sales tax holiday. The Florida House unanimously passed this bi-partisan measure. The bill provides for a one-time 3-day sales tax holiday for clothing and other school supplies purchased from August 13th-15th of this year.

"As a parent, I understand how every little bit helps when it comes to crafting a family budget, especially in these challenging economic times,” stated Representative Flores. ÃƒÆ’ƒÂ¢Ã¢â€šÂ¬Ã…“This bill will provide Florida families with a respite from sales taxes at a time when they are preparing their children for the school year.”

The bill expands the school supply list to include, among other items, pens, pencils, notebooks, notebook paper, rulers, glue, binders, lunch boxes, construction paper, markers, and folders.

ImageThe Miss Earth Jamaica Pageant is pleased to announce the search for Jamaica’s Next Green Goddess. Organizers are on a mission to find the most beautiful woman to represent Jamaica at the third largest International Pageant, Miss Earth in Nha Trang, Vietnam. We are looking for motivated young women who will proudly represent Jamaica in fulfilling the ideals of the competition – while becoming an effective advocate for Mother Earth.

The Pageant is open to all young female between the ages of 18-26, who are unmarried, never given birth; minimum height of 5 feet 5 inches; possess beauty of face and proportionate body structure; outgoing and friendly; excellent physical condition; has knowledge of her country's culture and environment; shall either have been born in Jamaica, be the child of a Jamaican parent, or is a naturalized citizen of Jamaica.

Exxon Mobil Corporation and the National Society of Black Engineers announced a new award to recognize university programs focused on retaining minority engineering students.

The Diversity in Engineering Impact Award, funded by a $40,000 grant from ExxonMobil, will acknowledge universities that have developed innovative and successful retention programs targeting African American, Hispanic American and American Indian students pursuing degrees in engineering.

Three universities will be awarded $10,000 each in September to support their efforts and provide recognition to encourage other universities to duplicate or develop their own retention programs. The application process will begin in May.

Miami Art Museum will hold its 13th annual free Family Festival on Saturday, April 10, 2010, from 1-4pm. Themed “A Crazy World of Color,” this year’s festival celebrates Carlos Cruz-Diez: The Embodied Experience of Color (March 19 through June 20, 2010), an exhibition of interactive light installations.

A variety of free art activities, performances and games will take place on the Cultural Center Plaza outside the museum, including the creation of a “Colossal Curtain of Color,” inspired by the Cruz-Diez exhibition, a performance by the juggling variety show “Bounce, Ooo LaLa and Daniel,” and a presentation by “Kids Love Mother Earth,” a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing children’s appreciation and understanding of the earth. Indoors, education staff will lead family-friendly exhibition tours where children can create their own version of Cruz-Diez’s art through a computer-based installation. The MAM Family Festival, presented by MetLife Foundation, is free to the public.