December 5, 2014 Economic Development News Round-up

President's Message

Good afternoon,

This week I had the opportunity to attend the Sayfie Review Summit in Orlando. The Summit brings together business, industry, political and education leaders from throughout Florida to discuss and provide input about how Florida can address challenges facing the state in the future. It's wonderful and amazing the energy, passion and commitment we have towards making Florida a leader. Some of these ideas, particularly energy, will then be moved to the Florida's Transportation Summit at the end of January. 

TIme is running out for registering for the 2015 Winter Symposium January 15th and 16th in Fort Lauderdale. This year's program, Site Selection and Winning Communities will include Site Selectors from around the country, along with Secretary of Commerce, Gray Swoope. Topics include perceptions of Florida by consultants and businesses, elements of successful community visits, incentive negotiation and marketing to consultants.

Presenters include:
  • Michelle Comerford, Project Director
    Biggins Lacy Shapiro & Company
  • Minah C. Hall, Managing Director
    True Partners Consulting
  • Mark M. Sweeney, Senior Principal
    McCallum Sweeney Consulting
  • Del Boyette, President and CEO
    Boyette Strategic Advisors
  • Mike Mullis, President/CEO
    J. M. Mullis, Inc

Join us online and stay informed about the latest news and developments that impact your community and economic development efforts. There are many ways you can connect with FEDC:
  1. Visit our website
  2. Like us on Facebook
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  4. Connect on LinkedIn
  5. Subscribe to our YouTube channel
Have a great weekend and thank you for all you do!


Amy L. Evancho
President & CEO
Florida Economic Development Council
3802 Spectrum Blvd.
Suite 141
Tampa, FL 33612
813-977-3332 – Office
954-319-2435 – Cell

News and Accomplishments

Read all of this week's news in the FEDC Newsroom

2014 November Federal Employment Statistics Released

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 321,000 in November, compared with an average monthly gain of 224,000 over the prior 12 months. In November, job growth was widespread, led by gains in professional and business services, retail trade, health care, and manufacturing.

Total nonagricultural employment was 140,045,000 in November 2014, an increase of 321,000 jobs (+0.2 percent) over the month and an increase of 2,734,000 jobs (+2.0 percent) over the year.
Links to download the Statement,statistics and November 2014 Employment information

Andy Gardiner Names Tom Lee, Anitere Flores to Head Budgetary Committees

Florida Senate President Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, named former Senate President Tom Lee, R-Brandon, as the chairman of the powerful Appropriations Committee on Tuesday. Gardiner also tapped Anitere Flores, R-Miami, to lead the newly formed Fiscal Policy Committee. Gardiner said the newly formed committee would handle fiscal bills with far less budgetary costs than the bills Appropriations would handle. "While the committee on Appropriations will remain the primary vehicle to produce the General Appropriations Act, the committee on Fiscal Policy will provide an alternative path to the Senate Calendar for bills with a minimal fiscal impact," said Gardiner before turning his focus to the new committee chairs.
Read More »  

Crisafulli Taps 16 House Commitee Leaders

With committee meetings for the 2015 legislation session set to start next month, House Speaker Steve Crisafulli on Monday announced the lawmakers who will chair 16 panels for the House. “The brand that marks this House is that every word, action, thought, and deed is all about Florida,” said Crisafulli, R-Merritt Island. “I believe the individuals I have appointed to these leadership positions will truly put Floridians first.” Crisafulli had already announced that Rep. Richard Corcoran, a Land O’ Lakes Republican slated to become speaker after the 2016 elections, would chair the budget-writing House Appropriations Committee.

Monday’s list also included the names of lawmakers who will chair each funding subcommittee: Rep. Ben Albritton, R-Wauchula, will again chair the panel handling agriculture and natural resources spending; Rep. Erik Fresen, R-Miami, will continue to lead the Education Appropriations Subcommittee; Rep. Jeanette Nuñez, R-Miami, will take over the Government Operations Appropriations Subcommittee; Rep. Matt Hudson, R-Naples, will still chair the subcommittee overseeing health-care spending; Rep. Larry Metz, R-Yalaha, will be the new chairman of the Justice Appropriations Subcommittee; and Rep. Clay Ingram, R-Pensacola, will take over the subcommittee that handles spending on transportation and economic development projects.

As previously announced, Rep. Ritch Workman will chair the House Rules, Calendar & Ethics Committee, which sets the chamber’s agenda. Meanwhile, Rep. Jose Oliva — a Miami Lakes Republican in line for the speakership after Corcoran — will chair the House Economic Affairs Committee. On other panels, Rep. Jason Brodeur, R-Sanford, will chair the Health and Human Services Committee, while Rep. Charles McBurney, R-Jacksonville, takes over the Judiciary Committee. Rep. Marlene O’Toole, R-Lady Lake, will return as chairwoman of the House Education Committee. Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, will lead the Finance and Tax Committee. Rep. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, will chair the Local and Federal Affairs Committee. Rep. Jose Diaz, R-Miami, will oversee the Regulatory Affairs Committee, and Rep. Matt Caldwell, R-North Fort Myers, will be the chairman of the State Affairs Committee.

Also on Monday, House Democrats announced that Rep. David Richardson, D-Miami Beach, will be the minority party’s floor leader.
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Tampa Bay Leaders Descend On Chile With A Mission To Expand Exports

Today wraps up a historic trade mission to Santiago, Chile, organized by the Tampa Bay Export Alliance. Representatives from 14 Tampa Bay area companies and organizations sat down for prearranged meetings with potential buyers who were already interested in their goods and services. The trip is the first since the alliance was formed earlier this year by top economic development officials in Pinellas and Hillsborough. Leading the mission are some big political names from both sides of the bay: Pinellas County Commission Chairwoman Karen Seel, Hillsborough Commissioner Les Miller, St. Petersburg Mayor Rick Kriseman and Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn. Buckhorn said he believes it’s the first time that the mayors of the bay area’s two largest cities have gone together on a trade mission abroad.

While company representatives connected with potential trade partners, the delegates net with political counterparts and others to sell the region as a whole, said Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corp. CEO Rick Homans. The itinerary included a meeting with the Chilean Trade Commission and Santiago Mayor Carolina Tohá Morales. While the main goal is boosting exports, officials from Visit St. Pete/Clearwater and Visit Tampa Bay also are making the trip with hopes of capitalizing on Chile’s new visa waiver program, which allows eligible citizens to travel to the United States for up to 90 days without a visa.

Key government and business leaders from across Tampa Bay will gather to discuss the trade mission to Chile, on Monday, December 8, at 10:00 a.m. at the Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay.
Read More »

USF Trustees Vote Unanimously to Build Medical School at Channelside

The University of South Florida is going downtown. The board of trustees voted unanimously this morning to build a new 12-story tower to house the new Morsani College of Medicine and the USF Heart Health Institute in downtown Tampa. The new urban campus would bring high-tech medical development to the Channelside district, which could bring big changes for both the university and the city. “We would act as an economic development anchor for Tampa,” said Dr. Charles Lockwood, the senior vice president of USF Health and dean of the medical school, “for one of the biggest urban projects in the history of this country.”

Lockwood told the trustees that the move would allow USF to build an urban medical school, a rising trend across the country that would make the Morsani College of Medicine more attractive to top medical students and faculty. “This generation of medical students, and future generations, want to be in urban environments,” Lockwood said. “It’s why so many medical schools want to be in downtown.”

The urban medical school would share space with the new heart institute, which Lockwood said would attract millions in new research dollars to USF. The move downtown would also allow USF to expand its nursing and neuroscience programs on the main campus, allowing it to train more students and engage in more research. The project would produce a statewide economic output of $215 million, Lockwood said, and create 1,400 new jobs — with most of that impact in Hillsborough County.
Read More »

EFSC President Named 2014 “Business Leader of the Year”

Dr. Jim Richey, president of Eastern Florida State College, has been named the 2014 Business Leader of the Year by SpaceCoast Business magazine for providing students new career choices and strengthening business partnerships. Richey received the honor Tuesday night at the magazine’s annual awards dinner where he was praised for a series of major initiatives that are making the college a central player in local and regional economic development. "Dr. Jim Richey’s leadership and contribution to the community and to Eastern Florida State College made him the obvious choice for the 2014 Business Leader of the Year," said SpaceCoast Business Editor Eric Wright. "He has successfully expanded the scope of one of the area’s most important talent generators, broadening EFSC’s vision and multiplying its impact."

Richey was also praised for launching at nearly $75 million plan to expand the college’s Melbourne campus by constructing five new academic buildings and a student union that will make the site a vital center for higher education and workforce development in the decades ahead. Furthermore, Richey has "aggressively developed partnerships with companies in dynamic growth areas such as Melbourne International Airport and Port Canaveral" that are helping create new jobs, the magazine said. In receiving the award, Richey thanked the college’s Board of Trustees for their "strong support and exceptional leadership in expanding Eastern Florida’s mission to improve the lives of our students and our community."
Read More »

Navy Simulation Programs to Provide More UCF Internships

he University of Central Florida has signed a new agreement with the U.S. Navy to cooperate more on training and military simulation programs. The agreement, signed Tuesday, allows employees from both institutions to share laboratories and other facilities, and will allow UCF students more chances for internships. It also allows scientists at both institutions to collaborate more, and provides a potential for more joint projects. The Navy has a long history of operations in the Orlando area, including the Naval Air Warfare Center at the Central Florida Research Park, near UCF, for over 25 years. Orlando is a center of simulation and training technology. UCF has a similar partnership with the U.S. Army. Central Florida is home to the procurement commands for the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard, commonly referred to as Team Orlando. More than $4 billion worth of contracts go through the commands here each year, according to the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission.
Read More »

Jacksonville Seeks 60% with Degrees, Certificates by 2025

Local business and educational leaders gathered Monday to announce the launch of “Earn Up,” an ambitious higher education initiative with a goal of having 60 percent of adults with training certificates or college degrees by 2025. The initiative is promoting “higher earning through higher learning,” based on research that shows the single greatest predictor of economic success in a community is the number of degreed and industry-certified people who live there.

“This isn’t just an education issue. It’s an economic development issue,” said Daniel Davis, president and CEO of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce. “We know when companies are looking to invest and expand, they need to know there’s a trained, educated workforce there to step into jobs. Making progress to this 60 percent goal not only helps us in the eyes of employers, it absolutely improves the quality of life in our community.”

“We are fortunate to have a diverse range of outstanding higher education options in northeast Florida, and by working together and making it easier for people to take advantage of them, we can significantly increase in the number of residents with education beyond high school,” said John Delaney, president of the University of North Florida and the incoming chair of the Jax Chamber Board of Directors.
Read More »

Offshore Inland Marine & Oilfield Services, Inc Announces Relocation to Pensacola

Offshore Inland Marine & Oilfield Services, Inc (OIMO) is excited to announce a permanent relocation from Mobile, Alabama to Pensacola, Florida. This strategic relocation will facilitate significantly increased manufacturing capabilities and efficiencies in the broad range of services OIMO provides to subsea, marine, and oilfield related businesses. Corporate personnel and operational employees will be relocated to a waterfront office space at Palafox Pier while fabrication and related support facilities and personnel will be located in the Port of Pensacola. OIMO’s existing engineering team will remain in Mobile.

Upon completion of the relocation, OIMO expects to add at least 35 administrative positions and up to 80 fabrication positions averaging $80,000 in annual compensation. OIMO will also create numerous ancillary jobs in the support and supply sector. This noteworthy relocation will also increase overall economic activity in downtown Pensacola and build a base upon which strong economic growth can continue to occur. OIMO recognizes the Port of Pensacola as a key asset with unrealized potential deriving from direct deepwater access to the Subsea and Marine service companies operating in the Gulf of Mexico.
Read More »

Solodev to Expand in Orange County

Solodev, website and mobile app software developer, announced that it will create 25 high-wage tech jobs at its Orlando headquarters. The company plans to invest $315,000 on construction and equipment to expand their headquarters. The new positions will pay approximately 50 percent more than the average salary in Orange County.

Solodev was honored as a 2013 Florida Company to Watch by GrowFL at the University of Central Florida, and founder and CTO Shawn Moore was named a 2013 CIO of the Year by the Orlando Business Journal. The company's steady growth has accelerated recently as evidenced by a doubling in size and revenue in the last year. Enterprise Florida President and CEO, Gray Swoope said, "Florida is a leader in the information technology industry and Solodev adds value to the extensive sector. Because of our top workforce, infrastructure and quality of life, companies like Solodev are choosing Florida for their business growth. I look forward to seeing the company’s continued success in Orlando."

This project was made possible with the help of close partnerships between Enterprise Florida, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Orlando Economic Development Commission and Orange County. We are pleased that Solodev continues to grow in Orlando,” said Rick Weddle, president and CEO of the Orlando Economic Development Commission. “Tech firms like Solodev are one of the reasons why Orlando has been named a ‘most promising tech hub to watch’ by”
Read More »

Job Links

City of Debary
Transit Oriented Development Marketing Manager

Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance
Director of Business Intelligence

Hillsborough County
Community Services Program Coordinator

Pasco County
Economic Development Manager

Southwest Florida Economic Development Alliance
Executive Director

Pasco County
Program Administrator, Economic Growth

Gulf Power Company
Community & Economic Development General Manager

University of South Florida
Economic Development Program Director

Palm Beach Business Development Board
Vice President, Business Retention and Expansion

Palm Beach Business Development Board
Vice President, Business Recruitment

City of Hollywood
Vice President, Economic Development – Rural Communities

Palm Beach Business Development Board
Corridor Redevelopment Manager

City of St. Petersburg
Economic Development Analyst

Lee County
Manager of Business Development

City of Coral Springs
Economic Development Manager

Business Development Board of Palm Beach County
Vice President, Business Recruitment

City of Boynton Beach
Manager of Economic Development

Delray Beach Community Redevelopment Agency
Economic Development Director

Enterprise Florida
Manager, Business Development

City of Eustis
Economic Development Director

Hillsborough County Economic Development Department
Coordinator, Competitive Site Analysis

Lake Wales Area Chamber of Commerce:
Executive Director

City of Leesburg
Economic Development Director

City of Longwood
Economic Development/Special Projects Manager

Marion County
Economic Development Liason

Central Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce
Associate Director of Economic Development Initiatives

Central Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce
Associate Director of Finance & Operations

Central Palm Beach County Chamber of Commerce
Associate Director of Marketing, Communications, and Public Relations

Tampa Hillsborough EDC
Business Development Manager, Business Retention and Expansion

Team Volusia EDC
Marketing and Communications Specialist


Tampa Bay Export Alliance Chile Mission Recap

Monday, December 8th, 10 a.m. @ Grand Hyatt Tampa Bay
More Information

FEDC 2nd Annual Winter Symposium

January 15-16th, 2015 @ Lago Mar
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IEDC Professional Development Course: Real Estate Development & Reuse

January 22-23rd, 2015 @ PGA National Resort & Spa
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Florida Chamber 2015 Transportation Summit

January 29th, 2015 @ Honey Lake Plantation
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28th Annual Government Small Business Conference hosted by SBDC TampaBay
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Enterprise Florida

Florida High Tech Corridor

Florida Trend



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