Scott-O-Meter

Include universities in state economic development grants


"Partner with universities... State economic development grants will always include partnerships with universities to develop research strengths into unique clusters."


Sources:

Rick Scott’s Plan to Turn Florida Around: 7 Steps. 700,000 New Jobs. 7 Years.

Subjects: Economy, Education, Workers

Updates:

Legislature funded the Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research

Updated: Thursday, January 5th, 2012 | By Angie Drobnic Holan

Rick Scott said he would leverage Florida's universities to help create jobs in the state. Partnerships between universities and businesses could create research clusters that would spawn even more jobs, Scott said.

Scott's promise was that universities would be included in state economic development grants, money that goes to recruiting businesses to the state of Florida. Additionally, he said the grants would always (emphasis ours) include partnerships with universities.

We're not sure it's realistic or appropriate to include universities in every single economic development grant, but we would award Scott credit if, over his years in office, universities were consistently included.

We asked Scott's office about this promise, and they pointed us to state funding for the Florida Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research. The nonprofit, which was created by the state in 2007, helps investors and entrepreneurs identify business opportunities for technology developed through publicly funded research. The institute received $10 million in fiscal year 2011-12, and the governor's budget includes another $1 million for 2012-13.

This is positive progress on this promise, but we think it's too early to issue a more definitive ruling, and we're still looking for more evidence. We rate this promise In the Works.

Sources:

Gov. Rick Scott's communications office, Response to PolitiFact's questions on the Scott-O-Meter, Dec. 28, 2011

Florida Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research, Florida Announces New Funding Program for University Spinouts, Oct. 19, 2011

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