The presentations from the Q2 '17 luncheon featuring Frank DiBello, CEO of Space Florida and Florida Trend's Man of the Year, are now available to VIEW HERE.  The '17 FCE Summit presentations are available HERE. We sincerely thank those who support the work of Clay EDC!  

"I choose Clay County to locate my high-tech company because the labor pool, which traditionally would commute an hour was readily available minutes away from our office. The move raised all of our employees quality of living and happiness, allowing me to recruit top talent and keep them."

Brian Knight
Co-Founder, Pragmatic Works


"I truly appreciate the effort you have put in to move this along!  In my 26 years in the development business, I have rarely received this type of support!"

Kent Gregory
MGB Development Group


"Clay EDC has proven to be a vital resource for Calavo's expansion into the southeast U.S.  Assisting in early-stage due diligence thru the move-in and operational start-up of our Green Cove Springs facility, Clay EDC has been a go-to source for information, contacts and relevant solutions to often complex issues."

Mike Browne
Vice President, Calavo Growers Inc.

"For any business - what could be better than 60,000 people of all skills eager to work closer to home.
Clay County has that and a high quality of life in a safe environment to raise a family.  With great schools added it's a 'no brainer' for me."
 Jerry Agresti
CEO and Founder, Developers Realty Group
"Clay County is uniquely positioned for the distribution of our marine products.  We have effectively extended our reach, decreased our freight transit times and lowered both inbound and outbound freight costs.  Lower expenses, business friendly and first class port access have combined to deliver us to the next level."

Edward Gaw
President, Hi-Liner Fishing Equipment & Tackle, Inc.

Most Recent

Florida's Unemployment Rate Continues to Drop
All good for Florida's economy, so far. Let's take a closer look at where Florida stands among its peer states. Here are five takeaways based on new data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: 1. Florida's job market still has momentum. Florida was one of just 10 states with lower unemployment rates in June than in May. Two states saw their rates rise while jobless rates remained stable in 38 states and D.C. 2. Compared to Florida, half of all states — 25 — have lower unemployment rates. That means this state hardly has a lock on a tight job market. Not even close. Colorado and North Dakota are tied with the lowest jobless rate of 2.3 percent in June. 3. Florida, usually a leader in adding jobs month to month, did not quite make the cut in June. The largest increase in employment over the month versus May occurred in Texas (+40,200), followed by Georgia (+27,400) and New York (+26,000). Florida trailed with a still respectable gain of 19,400. 4. Over the past year, though, Florida remained a top job generator ...
Politics and Greyhound Racing in Florida
Politics and Greyhound Racing in Florida
But dogs still race in Florida because the tracks must exist if pari-mutuel companies want to keep open their more-lucrative poker rooms. Under state law, only pari-mutuel facilities like horse tracks, jai alai frontons and greyhound kennel clubs can operate card rooms. If greyhound tracks stop their races, the card rooms would have to close. There have been many attempts in the Legislature to change the laws that tie the operation of card rooms and casinos with pari-mutuel activity. All of these attempts at “decoupling” have failed for a variety of economic and political reasons. Lawmakers said they will continue to try. “If you isolate decoupling of dogs, I think that you probably would have a majority of legislators, including myself, who believe it makes little sense to require under law an activity that no one wants to watch and many people consider inhumane,” said Sen. Rob Bradley, R-Fleming Island, who for several years chaired the Senate committee that regulates gambling. Sen. Dana Young said, “The issue is disturbing because unlike some of the other decoupling issues in terms of jai alai ...
Clay County Economic Development Workshop
Clay County Economic Development Workshop
“You have to be patient,” Garrison said. “You can’t just drop $500,000 in place and think that tomorrow something nice is going to happen, it just doesn’t work that way.” Commissioner Mike Cella agreed, citing the presentation from Jerry Mallot, the president of the regional EDC, JAXUSA Partnership – of which Clay County pays to be a member – and their long-term efforts to bring two Amazon warehouses to Northeast Florida. “Obviously you have the Amazon story of seven years before you saw fruition,” Cella said, “but it looks like they’re going to be a big employer in our area for a long time.” After his comments, Cella turned to the future, asking “Where do we go from here?” after Garrison leaves his post as the EDC’s commander in chief. After his departure, Garrison thinks that the EDC should narrow its focus, which, in his experience with economic development, could help it achieve more of its goals in less time. “I spent three years trying to be all things to all people,” Garrison said. “Walk with a rifle instead of a shotgun.” According to ...
Black Creek Project Gets Green Light
Black Creek Project Gets Green Light
Approximately 75 percent of the time, the Black Creek Water Resource Development Project will capture flow in the creek above a predetermined threshold. The pipeline would have a 10 million gallon transmission capacity. The project’s main goal is to recharge the upper Floridan Aquifer through the bolstering of Lake Geneva and Lake Brooklyn, which are aquifer recharge areas. Approved during the 2017 Florida legislative session, the project comes with $13.3 million in current legislative appropriations and an expected completion year of 2021. Estimates have put the project’s total cost at $44 million. Legislators have earmarked $5 million a year from the Land Acquisition Trust Fund as recurring payments to complete the project. Voters approved the Florida Land and Conservation Initiative – Amendment 1 – in 2014 to divert 33 percent of net revenue from the existing excise tax on documents to the Land Acquisition Trust Fund. The fund was developed to acquire and improve beaches, wildlife habitats, conservation easements and drinking water resources “I was [at the SJRWMD board meeting] yesterday and actually spoke to the agenda item, and we’re just incredibly excited and very, ...
Clay Boards Meet Jointly on Comprehensive Plan Update
Clay Boards Meet Jointly on Comprehensive Plan Update
“Not the current number,” Lehman said. “This is based on the amount [of dwellings] that could be built based on land uses that have been approved.” In an effort to keep the meeting brief, presenters cycled out relatively quickly, providing information only on what would change, and allowing time for brief discussion at the end of the presentation of each of the 13 elements in the plan. Planner Tony Robbins of Prosser Inc. in Jacksonville stepped up to the podium after Lehman’s presentation. Robbins discussed some of the housing issues that will be addressed in the updated plan, first and foremost creating a unified definition for affordable housing. Robbins also discussed the topic of economic development, something that Clay County Economic Development Corp. President Bill Garrison worked on with staff. Among the suggestions from Garrison were ideas to zone the land around major interchanges along the future First Coast Expressway in an effort to target specific businesses to those areas that could provide jobs and economic growth for the county. “The ideal element is to ensure that, whatever industry, whether it be restaurants or ...
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