Florida Senate - 2016 SB 606 By Senator Margolis 35-00897-16 2016606__ 1 A bill to be entitled 2 An act relating to state symbols; creating s. 15.053, 3 F.S.; designating the Big Orange as the official state 4 symbol for New Year’s Eve celebrations; providing an 5 effective date. 6 7 WHEREAS, the Greater Miami Host Committee, Inc., chaired by 8 Monty Trainer, has been recognized by the Florida Senate for 9 hosting and producing world-class signature events that promote 10 globalization, tourism, business, industry, trade and commerce, 11 culture, education, governmental relations, international 12 affairs, and community and economic development to local, 13 national, and international markets, and 14 WHEREAS, these international signature events encourage 15 hospitality, goodwill, trust, and international exchange, and 16 WHEREAS, 30 years ago, Rodney Barreto, then executive 17 director of the Greater Miami Host Committee, Inc., created and 18 launched the Big Orange New Year’s Eve Celebration, hosted by 19 the City of Miami, commissioning the design and construction of 20 the Big Orange to ignite the same enthusiasm and anticipation as 21 New York City’s Times Square Big Apple, and 22 WHEREAS, designed by internationally acclaimed industrial 23 artist Steve Carpenter, the Big Orange is 35 feet in diameter, 24 weighs 2,000 pounds, and has become an LED-lighted icon, and 25 WHEREAS, in 1995, the Big Orange was dubbed the “Times 26 Square of the South” and simulcast with the Dick Clark’s New 27 Year’s Rockin’ Eve television broadcast, and 28 WHEREAS, the Big Orange has been recognized as an official 29 United States time ball and is linked to the United States Naval 30 Observatory Master Clock, and 31 WHEREAS, the Big Orange and its celebration attract a 32 diverse audience of 150,000 to 250,000 local revelers and 33 international visitors annually, as well as a worldwide 34 television viewership of more than 50 million, and 35 WHEREAS, the Big Orange New Year’s Eve Celebration is 36 recognized as one of the top 10 New Year’s Eve destination 37 events in the world by MSN-USA Today, and 38 WHEREAS, in 2013, under the Big Orange banner “La Gran 39 Naranja,” the City of Miami and honorary chair Mayor Tomas P. 40 Regalado launched Viva Florida 500, the quincentennial 41 commemoration of the discovery of Florida in 1513 by Spanish 42 explorer Ponce de Leon, who brought the orange from Spain to 43 Florida that same year, and 44 WHEREAS, on December 31, 2014, Miami, as Florida’s most 45 culturally diverse city and the international epicenter of art, 46 culture, business, music, education, technology, media, sports, 47 and entertainment, hosted its very first live, family-friendly 48 New Year’s Eve television special, conceived and co-produced by 49 Latin Grammy Award-winning artist Pitbull, and 50 WHEREAS, during the 2015 celebration, the Big Orange served 51 as a symbol of the United Nations World Tourism Organization’s 52 call to increase policies and business practices that promote 53 gender equality and women’s empowerment through tourism and 54 allied industries, NOW, THEREFORE, 55 56 Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida: 57 58 Section 1. Section 15.053, Florida Statutes, is created to 59 read: 60 15.053 Official state symbol for New Year’s Eve 61 celebrations.—The Big Orange is designated as the official state 62 symbol of New Year’s Eve celebrations in this state. 63 Section 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law.