Economic Development Task Force Report

By: Mark Wilson

As someone who wants to ensure Florida’s future, it is my pleasure to present to you the Florida Chamber’s 2017 Economic Development Task Force Report.  For more than 100 years, the Florida Chamber of Commerce’s mission has been to lead Florida to a new and sustainable economy. Through our diverse membership of business leaders across Florida, the Florida Chamber has been at the forefront of solving issues that impact the competitiveness and future of Florida’s business climate.

Last Spring, the Florida Chamber once again assumed a leadership role when the Florida Legislature signaled an end to the use of financial incentives to attract jobs to Florida. In May, 2016, the Florida Chamber launched its Economic Development Task Force to provide definition, clarity and potential solutions to Florida’s economic development future. Over a nine-month period, our Economic Development Task Force:

  • Heard more than 1,000 voices,
  • Engaged more than 30 experts (site selectors and economic development professionals) and
  • Compiled more than 250 comments and recommendations on how to make Florida more competitive.

The Review and Implementation Committee continued this work by separating all of the recommendations into short-term solutions, to be led by the Florida Chamber, and long-term solutions, to be addressed by the Florida Chamber Foundation as a part its Florida 2030 research, which is already underway.

Finally, many of you helped finalize this work when you joined the Florida Chamber in January at the final meeting of the Economic Development Task Force. During this meeting, a committed group of Florida Chamber members finalized the recommendations. The result is the attached report which outlines steps the Florida Legislature can take now to ensure a stronger business climate.

Until the Florida Legislature makes Florida the most competitive business climate in the world, the state’s economic future will remain fragile because everything we know about Florida is changing — our politics, our demographics and our economics. To secure Florida’s future, Florida’s job creators need to create two million new jobs by 2030. We must accelerate the diversification of our economy and make Florida more competitive — not only with neighboring states, but also globally. And while elected officials do not create jobs, they do create the conditions for businesses to create jobs with both short- and long-term actions. This report outlines steps the Florida Legislature can take now to ensure a stronger business climate.

If you believe in creating jobs to secure Florida’s future, please support us by adopting the recommendations contained in the 2017 Economic Development Task Force Report and make sure the right things continue to happen in Florida by encouraging your legislator to act now.