Governor Rick Scott announced that the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) has activated the FloridaDisaster.biz Business Damage Assessment survey to gather information on how algal blooms caused by federal Lake Okeechobee water releases have impacted local business operations. [Read more…] about Gov. Scott: DEO Activates Emergency Business Damage Assessment on Algal Blooms
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) today announced the launch of a new website, FloridaDisaster.biz, to help Florida businesses prepare for and recover from hurricanes and other disasters. By providing critical information before, during and after a disaster, the website will help businesses recover and get Floridians back to work following emergencies.
Features of the new website include:
- A disaster planning toolkit to help businesses prepare for hurricanes and other disasters;
- Critical disaster updates from the State Emergency Operations Center to keep businesses informed during emergencies; and
- A Business Damage Assessment Survey to help businesses get back up and running after an emergency.
Governor Rick Scott today announced his 2018-2019 Securing Florida’s Future budget recommendations, which include $1.2 billion to attract businesses and visitors to Florida to continue the state’s incredible economic growth. The Securing Florida’s Future budget also includes an $85 million investment in the Florida Job Growth Grant Fund to improve infrastructure and workforce in order to grow the economy across Florida’s local communities.
Governor Scott said, “Florida’s business climate is setting an example for the rest of the nation because of our investments in economic development, cutting taxes for families and job creators, and reducing burdensome regulations. Thanks to this unrelenting focus, Florida has the fastest private-sector job growth rate in the nation and has added more than 1.3 million jobs since December 2010. We will continue to fight to outcompete other locations for new jobs so Florida families can have the opportunities they need to succeed for generations to come.”
Cissy Proctor, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, said, “Governor Scott’s Securing Florida’s Future budget will help Florida continue to be the number one state to expand or start a business. Our investments in tax cuts, critical infrastructure and strong communities have helped build a thriving business environment that promotes innovation and job creation all across the state. This budget will ensure prosperity for Florida’s future and keep Florida as the best place to do business and raise a family.”
The Securing Florida’s Future budget includes:
$85 million for the Job Growth Grant Fund to Ensure Florida’s Infrastructure and Workforce Remain Competitive for Job Creation
- The Securing Florida’s Future budget invests $85 million in Florida’s Job Growth Grant Fund to meet the workforce and infrastructure needs of local communities. The Florida Job Growth Grant Fund, which was established by Governor Scott and the Florida Legislature earlier this year, is designed to support projects for public infrastructure and workforce training projects that enhance growth and employment in Florida’s diverse industries. The fund is focused on projects that provide a strong, measurable return on investment. Job training and public infrastructure improvements will help Florida compete with other states for jobs and support economic development across the state.
$23.7 million for Enterprise Florida to Grow and Expand Businesses in Florida
- The Securing Florida’s Future budget will help diversify our economy by attracting high-skill, high-wage jobs and encouraging Florida businesses to expand within the Sunshine State. This will ensure Florida remains the best state to do business.
Peter Antonacci, President and CEO of Enterprise Florida, said, “Enterprise Florida is committed to investing in the state’s strong business climate and ensuring continued business expansion to provide opportunities for Florida families. We applaud Governor Scott’s Securing Florida’s Future budget and commitment to partnering with businesses to ensure economic success now and in the years to come.”
$100 million for VISIT FLORIDA to Promote Florida as the #1 Tourist Destination
- The Securing Florida’s Future budget invests $100 million for VISIT FLORIDA to market the state around the globe to highlight our distinctive and diverse vacation opportunities. Tourism has a vital impact on the state’s economy, and Florida saw a record number of 112 million visitors in 2016. Attracting visitors to the Sunshine State is especially important as the tourism industry recovers from the impacts of Hurricane Irma. For every dollar invested in VISIT FLORIDA, taxpayers see a return of $3.20.
Ken Lawson, President and CEO of VISIT FLORIDA, said, “VISIT FLORIDA is committed to promoting our state’s premier destinations at a great value to hardworking taxpayers. With the Securing Florida’s Future budget, VISIT FLORIDA will continue to market the state to visitors all across the globe, which helps to grow our state’s tourism industry and create jobs in a variety of diverse industries.”
$23 million to Develop the Top STEM Workforce in the Country
- The Securing Florida’s Future budget includes $20 million for the Quick Response Training (FloridaFlex) and $3 million for the Incumbent Worker Training Program in partnership with CareerSource Florida to continue investing in the state’s workforce by providing specialized training to keep Florida businesses competitive.
Michelle Dennard, CareerSource Florida President and CEO, said, “Governor Scott’s emphasis on workforce training is critical to further strengthen Florida’s competitive position in our global economy. With the proposed increase in Quick Response Training, CareerSource Florida will help thousands of Floridians enhance their skills and opportunities for a prosperous future.”
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
Mark Wilson, President and CEO, Florida Chamber of Commerce, said, “Governor Scott has made every effort to support Florida businesses, and his proposed budget to secure Florida’s future will help create jobs and economic opportunity for all Floridians.”
Carol Dover, President and CEO of the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, said, “Florida’s tourism and hospitality industry has flourished under Gov. Scott’s leadership and supports more than 1.4 million jobs. We have seen record numbers of visitors and applaud him for standing with us and investing in our economy with his Securing Florida’s Future budget. His investments in tourism are critical after Hurricane Irma’s devastating impacts, we must let the world know that Florida is still the best place to visit.”
Bill Herrle, Executive Director of the National Federation of Independent Business/Florida (NFIB), said, “Florida’s strong economy is dependent upon the success of small businesses. Governor Scott’s commitment to smart investments and efficient use of taxpayer dollars has allowed the Sunshine State’s business climate to thrive, bolstering the success of our state’s local companies.”
R. Scott Shalley, President and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation, said, “Florida’s retailers and consumers continue to prosper under Governor Scott’s leadership. The Securing Florida’s Future budget will ensure Florida’s economy will remain robust by strengthening tourism, developing an even more talented workforce and supporting the continued growth of Sunshine State businesses.”
Tom Feeney, President and CEO of the Associated Industries of Florida, said, “Governor Scott’s proposed economic investments will help create the ideal business climate for Florida companies to create new jobs and invest in communities. Businesses will be better equipped to employ jobseekers from Florida’s strong talent pool and skilled workforce.”
Governor Rick Scott and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) today are proud to announce the official start of the 2017 Paychecks for Patriots events, which connect veterans with great careers in their communities. To celebrate Veterans Day this month, DEO is partnering with the CareerSource Florida network, the Florida National Guard, the Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs and participating Florida employers to hold job fairs for veterans and their families.
Governor Rick Scott said, “The annual Paychecks for Patriots events provide our brave veterans the opportunities they need to get great jobs in our state, and is one more way we are working to keep Florida the most military-friendly state in the nation. As a veteran myself, I urge all Florida job creators to participate in these important events, and we will continue to do all we can to recognize our military members and veterans for their service and sacrifice.”
CareerSource Florida centers across the state will be hosting Paychecks for Patriots events Nov. 6-10, 2017, to help build connections between veteran jobseekers and Florida’s job creators. The employers will include national companies, as well as many local employers. More than 1,800 military and veteran candidates and their family members who participated in prior Paychecks for Patriots events across the state have gained employment.
Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Executive Director Cissy Proctor said, “The Paychecks for Patriots hiring fairs help connect the hardworking people who served our country with the jobs they deserve. Veterans and their families have unique skills, and this career fair gives employers the chance to offer life-changing employment to these specialized candidates. These important events are held throughout the state and show that our local communities are committed to making Florida the most military- and veteran-friendly state in the nation.”
The CareerSource Florida network includes more than 155 workforce professionals statewide, themselves veterans, who are dedicated specifically to assisting other veterans with finding employment year-round. These professionals include specialists who provide intensive services to meet the needs of veterans with service-related disabilities. The CareerSource Florida network helped more than 54,200 veterans with employment services this past year.
CareerSource Florida President and CEO Michelle Dennard said, “Our military veterans and their families make significant contributions to our communities through their talents, skills and dedication. The CareerSource Florida network is honored to serve those who served our country, and is gratified to have helped thousands of veterans secure employment this year.”
Events will be held across Florida during the month of November. More details are available at www.floridajobs.org/paychecksforpatriots.
View Governor Scott’s 2017 Paychecks for Patriots proclamation by clicking here.
The deadline to apply for Disaster Unemployment Assistance (DUA) has been extended to Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017. DUA is available to Florida businesses and residents whose employment or self-employment was lost or interrupted as a direct result of Hurricane Irma. Applications filed after the Nov. 14, 2017, deadline will be considered untimely and DUA benefits may be denied unless applicants provide good cause.
DUA is available to those who:
- Worked or were self-employed or were scheduled to begin work or self-employment;
- Do not qualify for reqular unemployment benefits from any state; and
- Due to the disaster:
- Are not able to work or perform services because of physical damage or destruction to the place of employment as a direct result of the disaster;
- Cannot reach the place of employment as a direct result of the disaster;
- Cannot perform work or self-employment because of an injury caused as a direct result of the disaster; or
- Became the breadwinner or major supporter of a household because the head of household died as a direct result of the disaster.
Applicants must submit their Social Security number, check stubs and documentation to support the claim that they were working or self-employed when the disaster occurred. In some cases, additional documentation may be required. To receive DUA benefits, all required documentation must be submitted within 21 days from the date the DUA application is filed.
DUA is available from weeks of unemployment beginning Sept. 10, 2017, until March 17, 2018, as long as the individual’s unemployment continues to be a direct result of the disaster. To file a DUA claim go to www.floridajobs.org or call 1-800-204-2418.
More than $90,000 in grant funds will be
used to support economic development projects
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) recently awarded $91,000 in Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grants to eight communities across the state. The grants provide funding that assists local governments in pursuing specific economic development projects or supplementing existing projects.
DEO Executive Director Cissy Proctor, said, “DEO is committed to using our resources to help all Florida communities flourish. The Competitive Florida Economic Development Project grants offer valuable tools to help support communities in reaching their local economic development goals.”
Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grants are available to all counties and municipalities to help communities learn more about local assets and economic conditions, and develop specific local projects. Grant awards range from $5,000 and $15,000.
The Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grants for 2017-18 are:
The Competitive Florida Partnership is a two-year program that provides technical assistance and support to rural areas seeking to improve their communities through an asset-based economic development strategy. The Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grants are offered for communities that may already be undertaking economic development efforts and allows local governments to pursue a particular facet of the Competitive Florida model without obligating to the Competitive Florida Partnership.
For more details on the process and provisions of this facet of the Competitive Florida Partnership grant, visit the Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grant.
The Department of Economic Opportunity announced today that Florida’s unemployment rate dropped to 3.8 percent in September, the lowest rate in more than a decade. As of September, Florida’s unemployment rate had dropped 6.9 percentage points since December 2010, faster than the national decline. Private-sector businesses were severely impacted last month by Hurricane Irma, which resulted in survey data showing a reduction of job numbers solely for the month of September. To help Florida families and business owners quickly recover from this massive storm, Governor Scott has activated multiple disaster-related resources, such as the Disaster Unemployment Program, the Florida Small Business Emergency Bridge Loan Program and the Florida Citrus Emergency Loan Program.
Governor Rick Scott said, “I am proud that Florida’s unemployment rate has reached a more than 10-year low of 3.8 percent. However, Hurricane Irma was the largest storm we have seen, which affected our entire state and led to the largest evacuation and power restoration effort. Obviously, our jobs numbers were affected because of this. Florida is a resilient state and we are working around the clock to rebuild and recover from this unprecedented storm. Florida’s economy remains strong and more than 1.3 million private-sector jobs have been created across our state since December 2010. We will continue to fight for jobs every day.”
Cissy Proctor, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, said, “It is great news that Florida’s unemployment rate is at 3.8 percent, the lowest in more than a decade. Florida also continued to have a labor force growing three times faster than the nation’s. Although the state as a whole was impacted by this storm, three large metro areas still had strong over-the-year job gains, showing the strength of our economy. As we restore businesses damaged from this natural disaster, it is more important than ever that we focus on getting Floridians back to work so families throughout the state can continue to flourish.”
Other positive economic indicators include:
- In the last year, 239,000 people entered Florida’s labor force, a growth of 2.4 percent. This rate is three times the national labor force growth rate of only 0.8 percent.
- Florida job postings showed 221,091 openings in September 2017.
- In September, Florida’s 24 regional workforce boards reported 20,022 Floridians, including 1,130 veterans, were placed in jobs.
To view the September 2017 employment data, CLICK HERE.
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity today announced Employ Florida, one of the nation’s largest job opening websites, launched a new portal for Hurricane Irma recovery and cleanup jobs. The Employ Florida Hurricane Irma Recovery Jobs Portal provides direct links to recovery and cleanup job opportunities across the state and is available at Irma.EmployFlorida.com.
Governor Scott said, “Helping Floridians get back to work is a huge part of the recovery process, and with the new Hurricane Irma Recovery Jobs Portal, families will now be able to more easily find job opportunities that also help their own communities. I encourage all families and businesses owners to take advantage of this important resource as we continue to work together to help our entire state rebuild and recover.”
New jobs are being added every day for jobseekers. Employers who would like to register and list jobs should pick “Hurricane Irma Recovery Job” in the listing so that it shows up in the portal.
DEO Executive Director Cissy Proctor said, “Employ Florida’s Hurricane Irma Recovery Jobs Portal will connect jobseekers with job opportunities for the important work that is needed to help our communities and state recover after this disaster. We are proud to offer jobseekers and employers this new resource.”
Besides job listings, individuals can also use Irma.EmployFlorida.com to create a resume, apply for Disaster Unemployment Assistance, find education and training opportunities and more.
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) encourages business owners and managers to be prepared for the 2017 hurricane season that begins on June 1. Adequately preparing for a disaster is the best way to protect your business and ensure it gets up and running quickly after a storm.
DEO Executive Director Cissy Proctor said, “Businesses across Florida need to be prepared and have a plan in place for operations before, during and after severe weather and storms, especially during hurricane season. As we know in Florida, hurricanes and severe weather events pose a threat to much of the state. The best way to protect lives, property and our local economies is to prepare in advance. If you don’t already have a plan for your business, make one today at www.FLGetaPlan.com.”
DEO urges businesses to do the following right away:
- Make preparations now – Hurricanes pose risks for flooding and wind damage. Make sure your business is prepared for a flooding event by moving important items off of the floor. Prepare for high winds by removing or fixing broken items on the exterior of your business.
- Get a plan – Make sure your business’s emergency plan is updated. If you do not have one, go to www.FLGetaPlan.com to make one today for your business and family.
- Check your disaster supply kit – Review the items in in your disaster supply kit to ensure all needed items are there and up-to-date. If you don’t have a disaster supply kit for your home or business, prepare one now.
- Stay in touch – Keep cell phones charged and make sure all contact information for employees and other important contacts is current and correct. Alert employees to pay attention to news, phone and email, especially during the threat of a hurricane or severe weather.
- Stay informed – Visit the Florida Virtual Business Emergency Operations Center at http://flvbeoc.org today to register your business to receive updates in the event of a severe storm or hurricane.
As a member of the State Emergency Response Team, DEO coordinates local, state and federal agency actions that provide immediate and short-term assistance for the needs of businesses after a disaster.
Visit www.FLGetaPlan.com to create your business emergency plan. More resources on business preparedness are available from the Florida Division of Emergency Management at www.FloridaDisaster.org, the Federal Emergency Management Agency at www.Ready.gov/business, and the Small Business Administration at www.sba.gov.
The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) invites communities across Florida to submit proposals for three grant funding opportunities for the upcoming fiscal year.
- The Competitive Florida Partnership Grant is a two-year program that provides technical assistance and support to rural areas seeking to improve their communities through an asset-based economic development strategy.
- The Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grant provides funding that allows communities to pursue a specific economic development project or supplement an existing project.
- Community Planning Technical Assistance Grants assist counties, municipalities and regional planning councils with Community Planning Act-related projects that benefit local governments.
DEO Executive Director Cissy Proctor said, “DEO is committed to using our resources and tools to help all Florida communities and their residents flourish. The Competitive Florida programs and Community Planning Technical Assistance grants are critical tools that help support communities in need across the state. These programs help communities strengthen infrastructure, enhance business development and improve their residents’ quality of life.”
Communities qualifying for the Competitive Florida Partnership Grant include all rural Florida counties and their municipalities, or rural municipalities in an urban county. The Competitive Florida Partnership provides grant funding and staff support in the first year of the program. In year two, communities continue to receive technical assistance from DEO and may be eligible for additional grants. The Competitive Florida Partnership began in 2013 to help rural communities meet their goals with expert support and additional resources that may be otherwise unavailable.
Competitive Florida Economic Development Project Grants are available to all counties and municipalities to help the community learn more about local assets and economic conditions, and develop a specific local project. Grant awards range from $5,000 and $15,000.
Community Planning Technical Assistance Grants are available to all counties and municipalities for one fiscal year. Regional Planning Councils may also be eligible for projects at a regional scale that include more than one county. Projects seeking grant funding must be completed by June 1, 2018. Typical grant awards will be between $25,000 and $40,000 per project.
Proposals must be received by the department by June 23, 2017 at 11:59 p.m.
For more details on the Competitive Florida program, click here.
For more information on DEO’s technical assistance efforts, click here.