Put grant-writing and regulatory specialists in local economic development offices
"I will ensure these offices (local economic development offices) have the right resources and trained specialists so they can assist their local businesses obtain state and federal grants, and to comply with state and local regulatory processes in the least costly manner."
No action yet on promise to add local economic development specialists
Updated: Wednesday, January 4th, 2012 | By Becky Bowers
Rick Scott's campaign plan to create 700,000 jobs in seven years included nurturing local economic development offices.
The offices, his plan said, are "central to job creation and retention in our state."
The structure of local development offices varies, though many operate at a county level. Some are county agencies; others reside in chambers of commerce or public-private partnerships. Enterprise Florida, the state's public-private economic development arm, lists primary economic development contacts by county.
Scott pledged during the campaign to ensure that the offices would have "the right resources," including specialists that would help local businesses meet regulations and pursue government grants.
Nearly a year into the governor's first term, we asked his office for a progress report on boosting local economic development expertise.
"Placing grant-writing and regulatory specialists in each local economic development office would require additional funding," his staff wrote. "Therefore, this has not been implemented yet."
We also checked the job creation plan of the state's newly consolidated state Department of Economic Opportunity, written in collaboration with Enterprise Florida and Workforce Florida. It included no mention of boosting specialists.
Scott's plan was built to unfold over seven years. If he takes steps toward adding specialists to local economic development offices, we'll revisit our ruling. Until then, this promise is Stalled.
Gov. Rick Scott's Communications Office, written responses to PolitiFact's questions about the Scott-O-Meter, Dec. 28, 2011
Enterprise Florida, Florida's Counties, accessed Jan. 3, 2011
Department of Economic Opportunity, "State of Florida Job Creation Plan," September 2011
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