County receives Defense Reinvestment Grant

Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that Hillsborough County was awarded $109,950 through Florida’s Defense Reinvestment Grant Program. The funding will support sustainability initiatives at MacDill Air Force Base and promote local defense oriented industries.


Governor Scott said, “It is critical that we continue to support our military installations in Hillsborough County, and I’m proud to continue our funding to MacDill Air Force Base with more than $100,000 in Defense Reinvestment Grants. The Tampa region is home to one of the largest populations of military personnel in our state, and we thank our servicemen and women for all they do to keep Florida families safe.”


For more than 15 years the defense grants have been successful tools in assisting local defense partners in supporting the State’s military installations. Florida’s military and defense sector is responsible for 9.4 percent – or $73.4 billion – of the Sunshine State’s economy. This translates to 758,112 statewide direct and indirect jobs.


Senator Tom Lee said, “A unique partnership has developed between the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, the Tampa Bay Defense Alliance, and led by the Tampa/Hillsborough Economic Development Council to sustain MacDill Air Force Base and its surrounding defense industry. I am pleased that the State has awarded this partnership with a $109,950 Defense Reinvestment Grant to support our community and our local military installation.”


Senator Jeff Brandes said, “MacDill Air Force Base is one of the best military installations in the country and it’s important that this community continues to diversify itself as one of the top military communities in the world. Without the DRG program, Florida’s military installations would not be able to continue the upkeep necessary to provide top security and safety for our military families.”


Senator Bill Galvano said, “The Governor and Legislature should be commended for awarding these grants. This funding in Hillsborough County is critical to continuing our grant programs and supporting our soldiers.”


Senator John Legg said, “The grant will help our military bases with much needed infrastructure improvements. These improvements will keep both military personnel and local citizens safe and secure. I applaud Governor Scott and our Legislature for addressing this need.”


Representative Dana Young said, “MacDill Air Force Base is one of Florida’s finest military installations. We should always be looking for new ways to aid the brave men and women who defend our freedoms. The Defense Reinvestment Grant Program is an integral part of continuing to make Florida the most military friendly state in the nation.”


Representative Dan Raulerson said, “This grant will support the Tampa Bay Defense Alliance’s efforts to deliver the message that MacDill AFB boasts unique attributes, helping to protect the base and ensure it remains a vital part of our community. It will help provide support for MacDill AFB and local defense oriented industries with a grant in the amount of $109,950.”


Representative Jamie Grant said, “The value of the Defense Reinvestment Grants cannot be overstated. I’m thankful to Governor Scott and my colleagues in the Legislature for including MacDill Air Force Base and awarding us with this $109,950 funding.”


Representative Jake Raburn said, “The grant goes a long way in helping to preserve the economic impact that our military bases and families have on Florida. I sincerely thank Governor Scott and the Legislature for recognizing the value the military has in Hillsborough County and across the state.”


“The Florida Defense Grants Programs are vital for our military and defense industry, and strengthen Florida’s workforce through the highly skilled former military personnel who enter the employment market each year. I am proud to play a part in supporting our military installations and communities, and appreciate what our service men and women do to protect our state,” said Gray Swoope, Florida Secretary of Commerce and President & CEO of Enterprise Florida.


A combined $2,450,000 was awarded to 14 communities in the state, helping to protect and improve 19 installations, and furthering Florida’s reputation as the most military friendly state in the nation.


Hillsborough County was one of twelve counties to receive a Defense Reinvestment Grant, which is designed to support relationships between military installations and their community. The Tampa/Hillsborough Economic Development Council has partnered with the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce and the Tampa Bay Defense Alliance to best utilize this opportunity. The $109,950 will help to protect Florida’s military installations, as well as promote economic diversification strategies in defense dependent communities.


“As home to MacDill Air Force Base, the military plays a critical role in the economic growth and success of our community,” said Rick Homans, President and CEO of the Tampa Hillsborough Economic Development Corporation. “We appreciate the state’s investment in defense and in Hillsborough County, and are proud to be awarded these funds on behalf of our organization and our partners, including the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce and the Tampa Bay Defense Alliance.”​


The 2014-15 Defense Grants were awarded to defense partners in the following counties: Polk, Brevard (2), Duval (2), Santa Rosa (2), Okaloosa (2), Clay (2), Pinellas, Escambia (2), Orange (2), Bay (2), Miami-Dade, Hillsborough, Walton and Highlands.


The Florida Defense Grants Programs are administered by Enterprise Florida, Inc. The grants are awarded annually through a competitive process to communities hosting military installations.


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