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November Economic Development Updates

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Highlands County Economic Development
NOVEMBER 2018
Connections - Highlands County Economic Development Updates
 
 
ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT ANNUAL REPORT NOW AVAILABLE
The 2017-2018 annual report for the county's economic development efforts is now available. The report covers activity during the county's fiscal year, which runs October 2017 to September 2018.The report details the growth of the county's key demographics and development activity as well as new business highlights and progress made on major economic development projects. The office will provide a presentation on the report at the December 12 IDA/EDC meeting as well as a December meeting of the Board of County Commissioners. Read more here. 
 
MEETINGS, WORKSHOPS & EVENTS
SBDC Starting Your Business
2 to 4 p.m.
Thursday, Nov. 15
South Florida State College Building H, Room 110
Fee: $10.00
Register 863-784-7405
(CRN 10967)
 
You’ve got the idea. Now you need to know how to get on your way. Starting Your Business is a class that teaches just that. From how to determine feasibility and legal structure to the type of license you will need, this class covers all the essentials that will help you get started. Full details here.
SBA Online Webinars
The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) and SCORE offer a variety of free webinars and trainings to strengthen businesses and help them succeed. View the monthly schedule here.

SFSC Corporate Education Classes
South Florida State College offers a variety of corporate training options ranging from soft skills to technology courses to conflict management and more. The Corporate College also offers customized training to help meet the needs of your business. View the full course catalogs online.
 
NEWS & UPDATES

SEBRING CRA LAUNCHES NEW GRANTS 
Downtown Sebring's Community Redevelopment Agency launched five new grants in October to help stimulate growth in downtown Sebring. The grant programs include: Anchor Tenant Grant, Downtown Revitalization Grant, Facade Improvement Grant, and the Event Marketing & Advertising.  Read more here.

 

BARBER RE-APPOINTED TO INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY
The Board of County Commissioners approved the Industrial Development Authority's (IDA) recommendation to reappoint Janet Barber to a four-year term on the IDA. Barber is the Assistant Controller at Alico, Inc., and former CFO of Delray Plants in Venus, FL. She has served as the board chair for two years and brings significant agricultural expertise and experience to the board. "Agriculture is the heritage and foundation for economic development in our community," Barber said. "I want to see agriculture thrive in the county, with the support and technology needed to stay local. Education and training are paramount to keeping a solid workforce that is professional and educated. Support systems for our local education are something that I support and see as one of the foundations to enhanced economic development in Highlands County." Meet the IDA/EDC board here. 

 

FLORIDAFLEX GRANTS STRENGTHENING BUSINESSES STATEWIDE
FloridaFlex training grants are customized, business-driven grant programs that help companies of all sizes grow and compete by keeping employees at the top of their game. These flexible grants support businesses at all stages – Quick Response Training for new and expanding businesses needing to quickly train new hires, and Incumbent Worker Training, specifically geared to assist existing businesses with as few as one full-time employee in need of upskilling to maintain competitiveness.
Read more here.

 

LOCAL SCHOOLS BUILD PROGRAM TO GUIDE STUDENTS ON PATHS TO COLLEGE AND TECHNICAL CAREERS
Highlands News-Sun By DOROTHY HARRIS
The AVID acronym stands for Advancement Via Individual Determination and DeWitt is focused on ensuring each student catches that spirit of determination early and steadfastly. “The program started at Sebring High in 2013 as an elective class added to rigorous coursework.” AVID students take Honors, International Baccalaureate, Advanced Placement or Dual Enrollment classes as well as this elective.
 
Currently 162 students, or about 10 percent of the student population, are in the program at Sebring High School. The students who entered DeWitt’s AVID classroom as freshman will soon be seniors and will benefit from assistance with SAT preparation and practice for college entrance exam essays. “We target the student where college readiness is not already part of their personal family experience. If no one has gone before you, it’s a lot to deal with. We provide extra support and encouragement to navigate the pre-planning needed.” Read more here. 

 

DUKE ENERGY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT TEAM HONORED BY SITE SELECTION MAGAZINE FOR 14 YEARS STRAIGHT
For the 14th consecutive year, Duke Energy has been named to Site Selection magazine's annual list of "Top Utilities in Economic Development." In the magazine's September edition, it credits Duke Energy's economic development team and its successful collaboration with state and local partners for delivering more than $5.9 billion in capital investments and more than 12,460 new jobs in 2017. Duke Energy has been featured on the list every year since 2005. Read more here. 

 

HIGH SCHOOLS CONNECT STUDENTS WITH INDUSTRY
The Economic Development office places great importance on fostering relationships with the schools, businesses, and students. In October, we had the opportunity to present at the Sebring High School Alumni Career Fair and the Avon Park High School Career Cafe. 

The Career Cafe is a unique initiative that brings local employers into the school to tell the students about career opportunities. Our presentation focused on highlighting the great businesses that are located in Highlands County and the skills that are needed for these career opportunities.

Our schools are making a conscious effort to build a skilled future workforce and to bring greater awareness to local career opportunities. There are programs similar to the Career Cafe on campuses throughout the county.

Let us know if you'd like more information or if your business would like to become plugged into these programs. We'd be happy to connect you!

 

NEW FLIGHT TRAINING BUSINESS AT SEBRING AIRPORT
Sebring Flight Academy is ready and open for business with a brand new TAA IFR glass panel equipped Bristell Aircraft along with a Cessna 172. The school, located at the Sebring Airport, also offers FAA approved simulator training in the Redbird FMX, a superior-quality, full motion, Advanced Aviation Training Device. Read more here.

 

BUSINESS FLORIDA OPPORTUNITY GUIDE
Florida Trend
Learn why companies looking to break ground, expand and grow are finding their future in the Sunshine State. Read the Business Florida 2019 Opportunity Guide HERE.  We also have hard copies of the guide available in our office. Just let us know if you'd like a copy and we will send it to you. 

 
MONTHLY METRICS
Unemployment Rate
 
Residential Real
Estate Activity
 
Residential
Construction Activity
Highlands County Economic Development
www.Highlandsbusiness.com
863-402-6882
501 S. Commerce Ave.
Sebring, FL 33870
Copyright © 2018 Highlands County Economic Development, All rights reserved.


 

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OUR MISSION

Enhance the quality of life in Highlands County by attracting a diversity of new businesses; increasing industrial investment while facilitating the retention and successful expansion of existing business and industry.

Keep In Touch

Economic Development
Highlands County Board of County Commissioners
(E) economicdevelopment@hcbcc.org
(P) 863.402.6924
(F) 863.402.6651