Kudos keep coming
Emergency planning and communication improvements cited
BY SUSAN BURGESS
Ten new awards grace Port St. Lucie’s awards and honors list, ranging from a grant to improve emergency communications to being one of the happiest cities in America.
Every few months the city scoops up at least another 10 honors or awards from a variety of organizations that collect data on particular subjects. In many cases, city departments win multiple awards from the same organization — for example, the Communications Department has picked up 66 awards for its work since 2017.
The city does outstanding work in planning and keeping its residents informed during emergencies, as seen in hurricanes Irma and Matthew, and has been honored for that. Daily press releases are keeping people up to date on the COVID-19 coronavirus.
Over $1 million from FEMA: The Federal Emergency Management Agency is giving the city $1.4 million to install more fiber optic cables to improve communications with St. Lucie County’s emergency operations center. New cables will also connect the system to the city police department and the water treatment plant, the county fire district headquarters and the sheriff’s office.
Shrinking gender pay gap: LendEDU, a website that helps consumers learn about and compare financial products, determined the city is doing a great job of shrinking the gender pay gap over the last decade. Port St. Lucie’s gender pay gap in 2010 was 22.05 percent. In 2018, it was 13.71 percent, giving the city a rank of No. 5 in Florida.
Fourth Safest City in the U.S.: Mymove.com took a look at data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report to rank each city on rates of violent crime and property crime. MyMove works with the U.S. Postal Service to connect people who are moving with retailers and others in their new location. Port St. Lucie ranked No. 4 in the nation for safety based on its rates of violent and property crime.
Eleventh Safest Florida City: Alarms.org, the official site of the National Council for Home Safety and Security, a trade association, dissected data from the Federal Bureau of Investigation on violent crimes and property crimes. It deleted data from cities with populations of less than 10,000, and from those that didn’t fill out a complete report. Based on all of that, Alarms.org determined that Florida is the eleventh safest city in Florida.
Ranked Seventh with the Most New Businesses Opening: Out of 1,000 places in the U.S., LendEDU says Port St. Lucie ranks seventh according to U.S. Census figures showing the net number of business openings – the number of businesses opened vs. the number closed. The data was released at the end of July 2019. The higher the ranking, the more attractive the location is to new businesses that might want to open there. LendEDU helps consumers learn about financial products such as loans, credit cards and other options.
Honored for Digital Transformation: The city won the Granicus Modern Website Award for launching a mobile-friendly and accessible website with more intuitive navigation that improves the user experience. Granicus connects governments with the people they serve.
Ranked No. 1 Best Place to Live in Florida: Bankrate.com puts Port St. Lucie at the top of its list of eight best places to live for its relatively low cost of living, vibrant culture, high degree of safety and robust job market. It has ample opportunities for activities on land and water. Bankrate is a personal finance company.
Fourth Best Place to Retire in the South: U.S. News and World Report selected Port St. Lucie as the fourth best place to retire in the south due to its mild winter temperature and many amenities that retirees look for. Data from 125 metropolitan areas was analyzed, including items like housing affordability, happiness, desirability, retiree taxes, the job market and access to quality health care.
Ninth Best Place for Families to Live in Florida: U.S. News and World Report names Port St. Lucie’s proximity to quality health care facilities, relaxed atmosphere, clean streets and neighborhoods, golf courses, waterways and being the home of the New York Mets spring training stadium as reasons it is one of the best places to live. U.S. News and World Report is a publisher of news and information.
One of the Happiest Cities in America: WalletHub, a financial site that offers credit and savings information and advice, looked at 30 different factors to determine which of 180 cities were the happiest. Port St. Lucie ranked 57th due to its emotional and physical well-being, income and employment, and community and environment.