10/3/2011 Miramar Beach, Fla. – Today, while addressing Gulf Power’s Annual Economic Symposium in Northwest Florida, Governor Rick Scott announced nearly $2.5 million in defense grants to local communities and organizations which support Florida military installations. These funds will continue to enhance and maintain Florida’s reputation as the most military friendly state in the Nation. Of the 20 grants announced today, four will benefit Northwest Florida.
“I am proud that Florida continues to support our military bases, military service members and their families, and the defense industry through the defense grant programs,” said Governor Rick Scott. “Additionally, these programs work to protect a $65 billion economic impact, and the over 686,181 direct and indirect jobs, which the defense industry annually infuses into Florida.”
Of the grants announced today, eleven are Defense Reinvestment Grants, totaling $850,000, that have been awarded to defense communities in support of military base retention and economic diversification. The program helps communities develop and implement base sustainment and economic diversification strategies. This year, the Defense Reinvestment Grants were awarded to the Orange County Research and Development Authority, The Beacon Council Inc., Pensacola Bay Area Chamber of Commerce, Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County, The Bay Defense Alliance, City of Tampa, City of Jacksonville, Clay County Chamber of Commerce, TEAM Santa Rosa Economic Development Council, Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast, and Highlands County.
The other nine awards announced today are Defense Infrastructure Grants totaling $1,581,245. These grants address infrastructure needs of communities which host military installations. They provide economic development organizations funding for projects associated with encroachment, transportation and access, utilities, communications, housing, environment and security to support their communities and local military installations. The year, the Defense Infrastructure grants were awarded to the Bay County Board of County Commissioners, Highlands County Economic Development Commission, TEAM Santa Rosa Economic Development Council, City of Jacksonville, Economic Development Council of Okaloosa County, City of Tampa, and Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast.
Both programs are administered by Enterprise Florida Inc. The grants are awarded annually, on a project-priority basis, to communities hosting military installations.