KISSIMMEE, Fla. (WOFL FOX 35 - Two big events taking place today will showcase Puerto Rico's growing political and economic influence on Central Florida.
The Governor of Puerto Rico Ricardo Rossello will host a town hall meeting in Kissimmee today. Topics up for discussion include statehood, more federal dollars for hurricane relief and the power of the Puerto Rican vote. Governor Rick Scott will also attend the event.
More than 5 million Puerto Ricans call the U.S. home, of those, one million live right here in Florida.
The Governor's visit coincides with the grand opening of 'Novus' at the Florida Mall. The popular Puerto Rican shoe store chain spent $500,000 to build out their second Florida store and currently employ a staff of 15. The store's manager Wanda Gracia and two of her employees arrived here following the hurricane.
The company's marketing director Frances De La Cruz is looking forward to the economic footprint her company is hoping to make here in Orlando.
"It's a very big step for Puerto Ricans to have a business in Florida. I know that the economy in Puerto Rico has some issues," says De La Cruz. "It's a very good thing for businesses to come invest, employ people and spend in business here."
'Novus' which has 60 stores in Puerto Rico and two in Florida will celebrate their grand opening at 5 p.m.at their new Florida Mall location.