Stronger economy pushes mortgage rates higher

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates bounced substantially higher over the past week but still remain below 4.00 percent and near historic lows, according to Freddie Mac. Bankrate found mortgage rates moving northward as well.

Florida's housing market shows signs of life

DELRAY BEACH — Florida's used home market saw solid gains in price last month, while the number of sales declined, according to Florida’s Realtors. The organization did not release sales data for the state’s metro markets.


Delray Beach passes transient housing restriction

DELRAY BEACH — Final reading of an ordinance designed to crack down on transient housing in single-family neighborhoods passed Delray Beach city commissioners unanimously Tuesday evening.


Four defendants get prison for pill mill operation

WEST PALM BEACH — Four more defendants, including three doctors, have been given prison sentences after pleading guilty to charges stemming from a massive pill mill operation that federal authorities busted last summer. Altogether, 24 of the 32 defendants in the case have been sentenced.

Rothstein assistant admits to violating election laws

Another employee of the now-notorious Fort Lauderdale law firm of Rothstein Rosefeldt & Adler has gone down.

Delray Beach commission candidates vie for votes

Five candidates for two Delray Beach city commission seats debated each other Thursday evening at Old School Square. From left: Pat Archer; Al Jaquet; Christina Morrison; Angeleta Gray and Vic Kerson. Retired news anchor Jim Sackett moderated.

DELRAY BEACH — Five candidates fighting for two seats on the Delray Beach City Commission argued over taxes, parking, transient housing and the economy Thursday evening at Old School Square’s Crest Theatre.


Bankrate: Mortgage rates dropping to new low

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates over the past week continue hold at record lows amid falling consumer confidence, Freddie Mac said Thursday.  Bankrate, however, found rates dropping further, citing the continued uncertainties in Europe.

Off The Avenue celebrates with a grand opening

adam knoblock and jolene mcclure

DELRAY BEACH — The name is apt. The entrance to Off The Avenue is exactly 25 off the avenue. Atlantic Avenue. In downtown Delray Beach The bar/restaurant, which co-owner Jolene McClure likened to television’s “Cheers” (remember, Sam, Diane, Norm, Cliff and company), celebrated its grand opening Wednesday along with representatives of the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce and City Commissioner Adam Frankel. READ MORE.

Delray commissioners kill fire service fee once more George Debate attended Monday's meeting to show support for keeping Delray's Veterans Park shuffleboard courts in the city budget.

DELRAY BEACH — Delray’s proposed fire service fee is dead. Again. For now, anyway. Delray Beach city commissioners, who killed the proposed fee on Jan. 17 only to revive it last Thursday, killed it again Monday night. The move leaves the city with a $3.2 million hole in the budget. Exactly how commissioners will fill it won’t be known until February 21, but it will likely include tapping into reserves, the delay of some or all capital improvement projects until the next budget year and other cuts. READ MORE.

Boca CPA charged with preparing false tax returns

BOCA RATON — A federal grand jury has indicted a Boca Raton CPA on charges preparing false tax returns and obstructing Internal Revenue laws.

Senate kills attempt to privatize Florida's prisons

TALLAHASSEE — The Florida Senate on Tuesday narrowly defeated a bill that would have turned over the keys to almost all state prisons to private contractors. Passage of the bill, which has been supported by Gov. Rick Scott, would have been boon to private prison firms, including Boca Raton’s GEO Group and Corrections Corp. of America, two of the industry’s biggest players.

Delray moves on transient housing restriction

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners on Tuesday took a first step toward limiting transient housing in single-family neighborhoods.

Mortgage rates steady, say Bankrate, Freddie Mac

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates held steady over the past week, according to Freddie Mac, while moving slightly higher, according to Bankrate. Both surveys agree on one thing, however: loans are dirt cheap, assuming you can get one.

Freddie Mac, Bankrate: Rates drop to record low

DELRAY BEACH — After moving substantially higher a week ago, mortgage rates this week did what they’ve done most of 2012 — set yet another record low. Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaging 3.87 percent with 0.8 point, down from 3.87 percent a week ago.

Economy bolsters consumer confidence in Florida

DELRAY BEACH — Consumer confidence surged in Florida but fell back nationally in January, according to separate reports released Tuesday. The University of Florida’s consumer confidence index rose 7 points to 77, as perceptions of the U.S. economy over the next year rose by 14 points, while expectations of the economy over the next five years rose by 10 points.

Imperial exec takes leave as Fed probe continues

BOCA RATON — Specialty finance company Imperial Holdings Inc. of Boca Raton said Monday that its president and chief operating officer, who is the target of an FBI investigation, has agreed to take a four-month leave of absence.

Delray Beach commissioners revive fire service fee

The audience at Tuesday's Delray Beach city commission meeting filing in. Most were city employees and most voiced support for the fire service fee.

DELRAY BEACH — It was a much different crowd Tuesday evening than the one that showed up two weeks ago, and the results were much different as well. READ MORE.

Harden recommends revival of fire fee proposal

DELRAY BEACH — Delray’s proposed fire service fee, believed to be killed two weeks ago in the face of seemingly overwhelming opposition, might yet have a heartbeat.

Exec gets prison for airline kickback scheme

WEST PALM BEACH — The owner of a Pasco County air service company who pleaded guilty to paying kickbacks to a Lake Worth resident who handled contracts for a major charter airline company will be heading to prison.

Bankrate: Americans feel more financially secure

DELRAY BEACH —'s financial security index rose in January for a second consecutive month, but consumers continue to feel less financially secure than they did one year ago.

Delray Beach commissioners extinguish fire service fee

Delray Beach residents wait for their turn to speak out against the proposed fire service fee Tuesday evening.

DELRAY BEACH — It’s back to the budgetary drawing board for Delray Beach. Delray Beach city commissioners Tuesday evening killed a proposed fire service fee needed to fill a $3.2 million hole in the municipal budget. City residents and business owners who packed commission chambers in opposition to the fee, cheered the 3-1vote. READ MORE.

Library hosts Delray Chamber's first 'Cocktails and Contacts'

Sunny Lee and Atef Dabbech of Senior Concierge Providers, left, with Craig Leitner of SBS Fianancial Corp. and Helena Leitner of Imports by Helena.

DELRAY BEACH — The Delray Beach Public Library hosted the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce's first Cocktails and Contacts, the newly rebranded monthly business card exchange, Thursday evening. READ MORE.

Freddie Mac, Bankrate: Mortgage rates surge

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates shot up over the past week but continue to hover near historic lows. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage now averages 3.98 percent with 0.7 point, up from 3.88 percent a week ago, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

Delray man gets prison for scamming seniors

FORT LAUDERDALE — A Delray Beach man who masterminded a $2.5 million reverse mortgage scam aimed at the elderly poor has been sentenced to 70 months in federal prison.

Home prices rise in Florida, fall in Palm Beach

DELRAY BEACH — Well what do you know? Used-home prices last month actually rose in Florida, albeit barely. In Palm Beach County, however, it was more of the same.Florida’s Realtors on Friday reported that the median statewide price for a used home sold in December rose to $134,3000 compared to $133,000 a year earlier.

Palm Beach County's jobless rate falls

DELRAY BEACH — The holiday shopping season gave Palm Beach County a pretty nice gift: more jobs. The unemployment rate for the county dropped to 9.7 percent in December from 10.1 percent a month earlier, according to a report released Friday by Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity.

Freddie Mac: mortgage rates slip to a new record

MCLEAN — Mortgage rates barely budged over the past week, but the little they did move was enough to set yet another record low, according to Freddie Mac.

SEC sues BankAtlantic, CEO Alan Levan for fraud

FORT LAUDERDALE — The Securities and Exchange Commission is suing BankAtlantic and CEO Alan Levan, alleging the bank founder lied about the condition of its commercial loan portfolio and committed accounting fraud by improperly recording loans they were trying to sell five years ago.

FPL to file for 2013 rate hike

JUNO BEACH — Florida Power & Light Co. has notified the Florida Public Service Commission that it expects to ask for a rate increase that is expected to cost the average customer an additional $6.80 a month.

Agent pleads guilty to Versailles mortgage fraud

WEST PALM BEACH — A Parkland real estate agent has pleaded guilty to conspiracy charges in connection with his role in a mortgage fraud scheme centered on the upscale Versailles development in Wellington

Delray voters to decide term changes for officials

DELRAY BEACH — And now it’s up to the voters. Delray Beach city commissioners on Tuesday OKed a package of reforms that would extend terms in office for elected officials and also extend the total number of years an official may serve before being “termed out.”

Boca Regional gets $25 million for neuro center

BOCA RATON Boca Raton Regional Hospital has received a $25 million grant from the Marcus Foundation to create the Marcus Neuroscience Institute. The grant is the largest the hospital has ever received.

Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates hit a record low again

DELRAY BEACH — It’s sounding like a broke record — mortgage rates continue to fall to lows never seen before. Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropping to a record low of 3.89 percent with 0.7 point from 3.91 percent a week earlier. It’s the sixth consecutive week that the 30-year has been below 4.00 percent.

Delray commissioners move on term changes

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners on Tuesday took a first step toward passing a package of reforms that would extend terms in office for elected officials and also extend the total number of years an official may serve before being “termed out.”

Delray schedules meeting on term changes

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners are moving ahead on a package of reforms that would extend terms in office for elected officials and also extend the total number of years an official may serve before being “termed out.”

Delray Beach moves to permit virtual kiosks in the downtown

Blue Web Mobile Media CEO Daniel Kinney presents the virtual kiosk system to Delray Beach city commissioners. Tuesday evening. Downtown Marketing Cooperative Executive Director Sarah Martin looks on.

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners were duly impressed with a virtual kiosk system that Blue Web Mobile Media plans to install throughout downtown Delray. READ MORE.

Eight sentenced for massive pill mill operation

WEST PALM BEACH — Eight more Palm Beach County and Broward residents have pleaded guilty to racketeering and drug-related charges in connection with the operation of four pills mills in the two counties. The eight were among 32 defendants charged as a result of Operation Oxy Alley, an investigation into South Florida pain clinics.

Dirt flies at Ocean Breeze West groundbreaking in Boynton

Representatives of the city of Boynton Beach, Habitat for Humanity of South Palm Beach County, the Boynton Beach Faith Based Community Development Corp. broke ground Friday on the 21-home Ocean Breeze West development. READ MORE.

Unemployment falls, economy adds 200,000 jobs

WASHINGTON — The national jobless rate dropped a point to 8.5 percent in December as employers added 200,000 workers to their payrolls.

TED Center starts 2012 with Smooth Jazz Networking

The TED Center held its first Smooth Jazz Networking event of the new year Friday evening at Breathe, the new restaurant on West Atlantic Avenue in Delray Beach. The event blends business networking with music, food, drink and even a little dancing. READ MORE.


Freddie Mac, Bankrate: Mortgage rates fall

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates fell back to record lows over the past week even as recent reports show signs of an economy gathering some strength.

Delray Beach moves forward on election changes

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners moved forward on two major election reforms Tuesday despite opposition from business interests, residents and a former mayor.

Delray hires Patton Boggs to tackle transient housing

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners have hired two law firms — including one of the most connected in Washington — to tackle the city’s transient housing problem.


Delray Chamber celebrates the holidays

DELRAY BEACH — The Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce held its annual holiday party Thursday evening at the gymnasium at Old School Square in downtown Delray Beach. READ MORE.

Delray Beach observes first night of Hanukkah with lighting ceremony

menorah delray old school square

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach observed the first night of Hanukkah with a brief ceremony to light the first candle on the city menorah on the lawn at Old School Square. This was the second year the city conducted the ceremony

Sears to close West Palm Beach store

WEST PALM BEACH — A Sears in West Palm Beach and a Kmart in Pompano Beach are among the 79 underperforming stores Sears Holdings will be closing, the company announced Thursday.

UF survey finds consumer confidence rising

DELRAY BEACH — Consumer confidence surged nationally in December while posting solid gains in Florida, according to separate reports released Tuesday.

Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates sink further

DELRAY BEACH — For anyone shopping for a mortgage and creditworthy enough to score one, it is indeed a happy holiday, thanks to some extremely low rates.

Incandela gets prison for reverse mortgage scam

FORT LAUDERDALE — A Palm Beach loan officer will being going to a prison for his role in a $2.5 million reverse mortgage scam that victimized both Genworth Financial and the Federal Housing Administration.

Unemployment falls in Florida, Palm Beach County

DELRAY BEACH — Florida’s jobless rate fell in November, according to a report released Friday morning by the state Department of Economic Opportunity. The November rate jobless rate fell in Palm Beach County as well, as seasonal hiring picked up, but held steady in Broward.

Freddie Mac finds mortgage rates hitting lows

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates continue remain seriously low, with the 30-year and 15-year tying or surpassing records set earlier this year as concerns over the European debt crisis and other news overshadowed positive domestic economic reports.

DDA efforts boost Delray Beach

Executive Director Marjorie Ferrer of the Downtown Development Authority gives Delray Beach city commissioners an update on the accomplishments and goals of the DDA Tuesday evening.

Marjorie Ferrer, executive director of the Downtown Development Authority, touted the successes of the DDA druign Tuesday evening's meeting of the Delray Beach City Commission. READ MORE.

West Palm woman guilty of falsifying tax returns

WEST PALM BEACH — A federal jury has found a West Palm Beach woman guilty of preparing and filing fraudulent tax returns with the Internal Revenue Service.

Delray Beach takes aim at transient housing

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners will be taking a second look at city ordinances adopted two years ago to limit transient housing in single-family neighborhoods with an aim toward tightening them.


PGA Tour Superstore to open in Delray Beach

DELRAY BEACH — PGA Tour Superstore will open its first location in Palm Beach County Friday morning when the doors open at the 50,000 square-foot operation in Delray Beach.  The store is situated in the Delray Crossing Shopping Center next to Target at 1040 Linton Boulevard, east of I-95.

American Therapeutics owner gets 35 years for scam

MIAMI — Judith Negron, one of the owners of a South Florida mental health company that was actually nothing more than a massive Medicare fraud scheme, will be joining two of her colleagues as a long-term resident of a federal prison.

Broward residents charged in foreclosure scam

FORT LAUDERDALE — A federal grand jury has indicted three Broward residents who allegedly ran an alleged foreclosure rescue scam that victimized both financially distressed homeowners as well as area banks.

Mortgage rates slip, remain near historic lows

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates continue to hang near historic lows, dropping slightly over the past week, according to both Freddie Mac and Bankrate. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped a point in both major surveys, to 3.99 percent with 0.7 point, according to Freddie Mac, and to 4.24 percent with 0.36 point, according to Bankrate.

Delray moves to change commissioner terms

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach voters will be given the chance to change commissioner terms in office from two years to three years when they go to the polls come March 13. That assumes that commissioners approve final reading of an ordinance placing the question on the ballot for the upcoming municipal election. It also assumes that there will indeed be a municipal election in March.


Magic Beauty salon/dance studio celebrates its grand opening

magic beauty grand opening

DELRAY BEACH — Ok, a spa and beauty salon. That’s been done. But a spa, a beauty salon and a dance studio wrapped up into a single business? Now that’s something different.

Florida's unemployment rate hits 28-month low

DELRAY BEACH — Statewide unemployment dropped to its lowest level in more than two years last month but remained substantially above national numbers, according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.

Delray moves forward on fire service fee

DELRAY BEACH — A fire service fee for Delray homeowners and businesses inched closer to reality Tuesday evening. Delray Beach commissioners approved a resolution that legally authorizes the fire service for this budget year and next.

The communications plan

By Tina L. Pugliese, APR, Pugliese Public Relations

Any public relations campaign should start with a plan. The plan can be dynamic and change as the situation changes, but if a well-thought-out communications plan is in place before the campaign is launched, everyone involved will be better prepared to adjust as needed.

iPad2 and other devices may be in short supply

By Larry Grinnell, Palm Beach Phoenix Apple Users Group

The recent tragedies in Japan have a far-reaching impact on the consumer electronics industry, among others. Most high resolution LCDs are made in Japan, and that is where the LCDs used in the iPad and iPad2 are manufactured.

Proffitt on Management: Financially savvy managers

By Nancy Proffitt, Certified Business Coach, Proffitt Management Solutions

No subject seems to pervade our lives as much as finance. Whether it is wresting with the family budget or seeing if your company qualifies for a bank loan, finance looms larger than any other technical subject on a daily basis.

Chris Evert tournament entertains Delray Beach tennis fans

DELRAY BEACH — The caliber of play wasn't exactly Wimbleton, but it was, nonetheless, an entertaining day of tennis Saturday at the Chris Evert Raymond James Pro-Celebrity Classic in Delray Beach.

'Dinner in the Sky' could boost Delray's culinary image

Sarah Martin presenting to city commission.

DELRAY BEACH — Imagine gathering at the dinner table — and looking down on Delray’s 100-foot Christmas tree and the rest of Atlantic Avenue decked out in its holiday finest. It could happen come Dec. 1. Fork out a mere $500 and it could be you sitting up there.

Consumer confidence dims holiday outlook

DELRAY BEACH — Consumer confidence slipped slightly in Florida this month but dropped dramatically nationwide. In fact, consumer confidence nationally hasn’t been this low since March 2009.

Delray commissioners OK Atlantic Ocean Club parking

DELRAY BEACH — Parking issues involving restaurants in the downtown are almost guaranteed to stir up debate, sometimes heated debate, among Delray Beach city commissioners.

City Furniture eyes Broward, Palm Beach expansion

MIAMI — City Furniture has launched a $17.5 million expansion program that includes building or renovating five stores from Miami to West Palm Beach.

Florida offering funding for start-up companies

BOCA RATON — The Institute for Commercialization of Public Research announced Thursday a new source of funding for early-stage technology and life sciences companies that spin out of Florida’s universities and research institutions.

Weather dampens the weekend's fun in Delray Beach

One of the orchids on display the Delray Beach Orchid Society show inside the gymnasium at Old School Square, where it was nice and dry on a very wet weekend.

Outside, it was more dicey, but the threatening weather didn't prevent the ghouls, ghosts and goblines from having a good time early Saturday afternoon.

Click for more pictures.

Miami lawyer charged in Wellington fraud scheme

WEST PALM BEACH — Federal authorities have charged a Miami lawyer with conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with a two luxury homes in Wellington.

Delray Beach joins suit over inspector general

DELRAY BEACH — Delray will be taking Palm Beach County to court over funding of the new inspector general’s office. City Commissioners on Tuesday agreed to sue the county after receiving a bill for $39,059 as its share of the cost of the new office, set up in response to a wave of corruption that saw four county commissioners convicted of criminal charges over the past decade.

Tailgate raises $40,000 for Delray's Achievement Centers

Keeping tabs of auction items. At left is Stephanie Seibel executive director of the Achievement Centers for Children and Families, with Tom Kriete and Tom Serio of the Chamber Men's Group. Kriete and Serio are wearing the group's new black shirts.

DELRAY BEACH — The weather was just good enough Wednesday evening as the Delray Beach Chamber Men’s Group pulled off most likely the best fundraiser in its five-year history.

Amber Leigh fills Delray's Old School Square

the scene at old school square

DELRAY BEACH — The combination of a free Amber Leigh concert and Delray’s first food truck expo proved a powerful attraction as thousands packed Old School Square Friday evening.

Exec pleads guilty to kickback scheme

WEST PALM BEACH — The owner of a Pasco County air service company has pleaded guilty to paying kickbacks to a Lake Worth resident who handled ground service and security contracts for a major charter airline company.

Gasoline prices shoot up on optimism

DELRAY BEACH — Evidence of a stronger economy and prospects of a solution to the European debt crisis sent gasoline prices sharply higher over the past week. Prices had fallen for six consecutive weeks previously.

The end is near — get a power of attorney!

WEST PALM BEACH — Worried about who and what you’ll leave behind when you get swept up in the Rapture later this week? A West Palm Beach firm has the perfect solution: Areligious power of attorney.

BankAtlantic executes reverse stock split

FORT LAUDERDALE — BankAtlantic completed a one-for-five reverse stock split as of the close of Friday’s trading. The split effectively consolidates five shares of BankAtlantic's common stock into one share.

Elks Lodge hosts Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce

Regina O'Leary of House to Home Redesign, left, with Frank Savasta of FLS Painting Contractors, Brian Rosen of Marcus & Millichap commercial real estate and Donna Sloan of Sloan Building & Design. DELRAY BEACH — The Elks Lodge hosted the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce's monthly business card exchange Thursday at the lodge at 265 NE Fourth Avenue.

Mortgage rates move sharply higher

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates moved sharply higher over the past week, largely because of a stronger-than-expected jobs report from the Labor Department. But don't be surprised if they come a tumblin' down once more.

Alleged time-share scammers charged with fraud

WEST PALM BEACH — Federal prosecutors have charged 13 employees of a Fort Lauderdale time share sales and marketing firm on fraud charges in connection with an advanced fee scam that targeted time-share owners.

Delray celebrates its centennial

DELRAY BEACH — Happy Birthday Delray! You’re 100 years old! Well almost. With lots of music, the opening of a time capsule and of course a birthday cake — large enough to feed 1,000 — the Village by the Sea celebrated its centennial with a party that took up most of downtown.

Metropolitan buys Continucare for $400 million

BOCA RATON — Metropolitan Health Networks has completed its $400 million deal for Miami-based Continucare Corp., making the company the largest provider service network serving the Medicare and Medicaid eligible population in Florida, and one of the largest in the United States.

Delray tables office building controversy

DELRAY BEACH — An otherwise obscure office building on the site of one of Delray’s more prominent historic properties became the center of debate during Tuesday evening’s meeting of the city commissioners. At issue: whether it’s been open legally — for the last 16 years.

Blue Bell Creameries opens Delray Beach distribution center

DELRAY BEACH — It was a cold, sweet moment Wednesday evening as Blue Bell Creameries officially became a part of the greater Delray business community. Brenham, Texas-based Blue Bell cut the ribbon on a 13,000-square-foot distribution center located west of the Turnpike on Atlantic

Mortgage rates sink below 4 percent

DELRAY BEACH — Consider “Operation Twist” a success, judging by this week’s mortgage rates.  A 30-year mortgage can be had with an interest under 4 percent. The Federal Reserve several weeks ago announced a plan dubbed Operation Twist to buy up long-term Treasury bonds as a means of bringing down long-term interest rates and spurring lending. Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, released Thursday, found the average 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage dropping to 3.94 percent with 0.8 point from 4.01 percent a week ago.

Delray tables office building controversy

DELRAY BEACH — An otherwise obscure office building on the site of one of Delray’s more prominent historic properties became the center of debate during Tuesday evening’s meeting of the city commissioners. At issue: whether it’s been open legally — for the last 16 years.

Gym 111 hosts Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce

DELRAY BEACH — Gym 111, at 111 E. Atlantic Avenue played host to members and guests of the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce's September business card exchange Thursday evening.

Flat Stanley's Harley ride rakes in $13,000 for charity

DELRAY BEACH — For a cardboard cutout, Flat Stanley is a heck of a fundraiser. Chuck Halberg and Jimmy Christe ain’t bad either. The three combined to raise $13,000 for charity during a 23,000-mile, 22-state tour called Flat Stanley rides a Harley for Kids and Cops. Five charities received an equal slice of the take Wednesday evening at Delux in downtown Delray Beach.

Blue Christmas ahead for Florida's retailers?

DELRAY BEACH — Christmas is still nearly three months away, but the Tuesday’s consumer confidence report from the University of Florida won’t bring much cheer to the Sunshine State’s retailers as it portends a rather slow holiday shopping season.

Broward residents sentenced for mortgage scam

FORT LAUDERDALE — Four Broward men received prison sentences Friday for their roles in a $16 million mortgage scam that involved real estate in Broward and Palm Beach counties.  A Broward woman received probation for her role in the same scheme.

'Twist' likely to send mortgage rates plunging

DELRAY BEACH — Mortgage rates continue to hang near record lows that are likely to be shattered in the coming weeks thanks to the Federal Reserve and Operation Twist.

Broward men charged with mortgage fraud

WEST PALM BEACH – Two Broward residents face federal wire fraud charges for their alleged role in a $2.8 million mortgage fraud scheme.

Delray kills Atlantic restaurant incentive

DELRAY BEACH — By the narrowest of margins, Delray Beach city commissioners put an end to a 1990s-era incentive created to bring restaurants to the city downtown

Delray Beach commissioners set 2012 budget

DELRAY BEACH — Delray’s new budget for the upcoming fiscal year is a done deal. Sort of. Delray Beach city commissioners on Tuesday approved a $93.03 million budget for the year that begins Oct. 1, plus a property tax rate of $7.19 per $1,000 of assessed value to fund it. The tax rate is the same as this year.

Adina's Cakery celebrates sweet grand opening

DELRAY BEACH — Business is sweet for Adina Serell.  But then, how it could be otherwise for someone known as “The Cake Lady?” Serell is the owner/operator of Adina’s Cakery, which makes special-occasion cakes intended to be both visual and culinary masterpieces. Serell, with the help of the Delray Beach Chamber of Commerce and city officials, cut the ribbon on the new venture Wednesday evening. 

Businesswoman gets 35 years for Medicare scam

MIAMI — The owner of a Miami-based mental health care company has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for helping to orchestrate a scheme that took Medicare for $205 million.

Debt crisis pushes oil prices south

DELRAY BEACH — The European debt crisis is not just putting a damper on stocks; it’s also suppressing oil prices — a bit of good news for consumers in an otherwise gloomy economic picture.

Jobless rates drop in Palm Beach, Broward counties

DELRAY BEACH — The good news from Friday’s jobs report from the Agency for Workforce Innovation: Unemployment held steady last month at the state level while falling in Palm Beach and Broward counties.

Freddie Mac, Bankrate: Mortgage rates hit new lows

DELRAY BEACH — Continued concerns over the economy once again sent mortgage rates to record lows. Both the Freddie Mac and Bankrate surveys found the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropping below records set only a week ago.

Delray OKs restaurant parking change, sets budget

DELRAY BEACH — Delray Beach city commissioners on Tuesday passed first reading of an ordinance doubling parking requirements for new restaurants opening up along Atlantic Avenue in the heart of the downtown.

Lawyer Kusnick gets prison for scamming clients

FORT LAUDERDALE — A former lawyer in the now-defunct Rothstein Rosenfeldt & Adler law firm will be spending the next two years in federal prison  after pleading guilty to charges that he helped scam two of the firm’s clients.

Economy drags mortgage rates to new lows

DELRAY BEACH — It seems that there is no limit to how far mortgage rates will sink, especially with the weak economy. For the second time in a month, rates set record lows in both the Freddie Mac and Bankrate surveys.

Worker confidence sinks, SFN index finds

FORT LAUDERDALE — The SFN Group Employee Confidence Index fell for the third consecutive month, dropping 6.8 points to 41.0 in August. The index, which measures workers' confidence in their personal employment situation and optimism in the economic environment, revealed waning confidence among workers, specifically in regard to the strength of the economy and the future of their current employers.  

Feds indict five South Florida docs on drug charges

DELRAY BEACH — Federal law enforcement authorities continue their crackdown on so-called pill mills, indicting 13 South Florida residents, including five doctors, on charges of illegal distribution of pain killers, steroids and human growth hormones through a ring that operated in Palm Beach, Broward and Martin counties.

Bankrate: ARMs drop to near ridiculous levels

DELRAY BEACH — The continuous stream of weak economic reports helped keep mortgage rates down over the past week. In fact, rates for adjustable rate mortgages fell to levels so low, they’re “bordering on the ridiculous,” according to Bankrate.

Peachtree launches reverse mortgage business

BOYNTON BEACH — JGWPT, parent of  J.G. Wentworth and Boynton Beach-based Peachtree Financial Solutions, said Wednesday that it is launching a reverse mortgage division that will become part of the Peachtree group of companies operating out of Boynton Beach.

Citrix lifts South Florida stocks

DELRAY BEACH — Stocks continued to move higher Wednesday, though modestly so. South Florida stocks picked up enough to nudge the portfolio over 900 for the first time since early August.

Innkeepers sues Cerberus over billion-dollar deal

PALM BEACH — Innkeepers USA, the Palm Beach-based hotel property real estate investment trust, is suing private investment firm  Cerberus for breach of contract for allegedly reneging on an agreement to buy 64 hotels from Innkeepers.

Florida's consumer confidence near record low

DELRAY BEACH — The bottom dropped out of consumer confidence in August. The University of Florida’s statewide consumer confidence index dropped 5 points from its July reading to 62 in August; the Conference Board’s national index dropped 10 point to 44.5 as consumers became more pessimistic about the economy short-term.

McNerney gets prison for Mutual Benefits scam

FORT LAUDERDALE — The founding partner of a now-defunct Fort Lauderdale law firm will be spending the next five years in federal prison for his role in one of the largest scams in Florida history.

Bankrate: Consumer security falls amid turmoil

DELRAY BEACH — Consumers’ financial security took a steep hit in August amid stock market upheavals, Standard and Poor’s downgrade of U.S. debt and a slew of poor economic reports. Bankrate's Financial Security Index fell to an August reading of 92.3 from July’s 95.6, the lowest point so far in 2011.

Palm Beach, Broward docs hit with drug charges

WEST PALM BEACH — A federal grand jury has indicted 32 South Florida residents, including 13 doctors, on charges of operating “pill mills” in Broward and Palm Beach counties that illegally sold as much as $40 million in prescription drugs.

Bankrate: Mortgage rate drops to record low

DELRAY BEACH — This week, it was Bankrate’s turn to set a record low for the 30-year. Freddie Mac, meanwhile found the mortgage moving higher after setting its all-time low last week.


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