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Business briefs | Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport consolidates rental car leases

SRQ rental car options streamlined

MANATEE -- A series of mergers in the rental car industry over the past few years has Sarasota-Bradenton International Airport consolidating leases with its rental car concessionaires and bringing back Thrifty Rent-a-Car.

On Monday, the Sarasota-Manatee Airport Authority approved a measure that will shuffle six rental car brands owned by three rental companies. Hertz, Enterprise and Avis will consolidate and streamline their customer counter operations and will have their car lot space redistributed to better serve customers.

With the changes, Hertz has expressed interest in bringing its Thrifty brand back to the airport. Airport staff negotiated reassignments in counter and service lot space to accommodate the new rental brand.

The measure also extends the companies' concession agreements to September 2019.

Salt & Light Productions wins six Telly Awards

LAKEWOOD RANCH -- Salt & Light Productions, a branch of the Center for Faith and Freedom in Lakewood Ranch, has received six Telly Awards.

The 36th annual national competition awards top film and video productions, groundbreaking online video content, and outstanding local and regional cable television commercials and programs.

Salt & Light Productions received the honors for three videos it created in 2015: "Angela's Story," about a homeless woman's struggle to find employment and create a new life for herself; an animated presentation, "Don't Text & Drive," that generated the largest viewership for the company by finding a worldwide audience; and "Hope Family Services," which focused on several Manatee County women who survived domestic violence.

The center is a non-denominational faith-based organization whose philanthropic mission is to help other nonprofits deliver messages of hope.

The award-winning videos, "Angela's Story" and "Don't Text & Drive" are being used as resources for non-profit organizations across the country.

Stocks little changed amid airlines selloff

U.S. stocks closed little changed Wednesday, with the Standard & Poor's 500 index slipping for a second day, as a selloff in airlines offset Federal Reserve meeting minutes that showed officials in no hurry to raise interest rates.

Southwest Airlines fell to a six-month low to pace a drop among air carriers. Lowe's slid 4.6 percent after reporting first-quarter profit that trailed analysts' estimates. Yahoo! climbed 4.4 percent after affirming plans to spin off a stake in Alibaba. Cablevision Systems jumped 18 percent amid cable industry deal speculation.

The S&P 500 fell 0.1 percent to 2,125.85, after briefly climbing above its all-time high. The Dow Jones industrial average declined 26.99 points, or 0.2 percent, to 18,285.40 after closing Tuesday at a record. The Nasdaq composite index rose less than 0.1 percent.

-- Staff, wire reports

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