Legislative delegation hears local concerns

Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013 at 11:19 AM.

“Twenty square miles does not cover quite what we could use,” Everett said. “Most counties have an ag field they call an industrial park, with no utilities or water, and that isn’t going to do much for bringing jobs to an area.”

Everett used Ebro as an example. “There is only nine-tenths of a mile of Enterprise Zone at the intersection of Highway 20 and 79 in Ebro, and I believe one day that is going to be the biggest intersection in the county.” However, now to expand the Enterprise Zone and offer incentives to businesses to locate there, the county would have to take away zone status from some other community.

“I can say that Marti Coley is one of the strongest voices in the Legislature for rural economic development,” Gaetz said.

“I understand how this could be beneficial to our counties,” Coley said of the request.

County Commissioner Alan Bush also asked the legislators to help with the Washington County budget, citing numerous cuts to county revenue from the state.

Gaetz said he doesn’t know where all the money Gov. Rick Scott has been proposing to spend is going to come from, but said the Legislature would be challenged in the coming session to fund everything.

“We’re waiting to see what the President and Congress do in March with this new fiscal emergency,” Gaetz said. “If they don’t step up, we can go into automatic sequester and the state will be drowning in red ink.”

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