(Miami, FL – Dec. 2, 2015) – The Beacon Council, Miami-Dade County’s official economic development organization, announced today its support of Governor Rick Scott’s legislative proposals to fully fund Enterprise Florida and improve our state’s current incentive process.

Enterprise Florida (EFI) is the state’s official economic development organization.  The Beacon Council works closely with EFI to recruit companies to and help companies expand in Miami-Dade County.

“In the past year, Miami-Dade County has seen steady job growth in knowledge-based sectors such as professional and financial services, as well as tech and healthcare and we want to continue that trend,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez. “Governor Scott’s business-incentive funding request will allow the County to ramp up our efforts even more – bringing more jobs to our community and encouraging more businesses to invest in Florida. From an economic-development standpoint, this funding is essential for our state to take the lead in our nation’s job growth.”

The Beacon Council President & CEO Larry K. Williams noted, “Miami-Dade competes every day with other regions worldwide offering attractive incentive packages to companies looking to expand or relocate.  We must have the tools and resources to be successfully recruit job creators and helping existing Florida businesses expand.”

The Beacon Council works closely with the Miami Dade Legislative Delegation to support policies that enable economic growth. The new proposal includes a collaborative process that provides accountability, while allowing economic developers to compete fairly, effectively and efficiently.

For example, incentive packages must be performance-based and carefully structured guaranteeing the investment in job creation. EFI’s legislative package incorporates these important provisions to provide assurances to legislators concerned about reforming the current incentive process.

The Beacon Council supports the following economic development proposals by Enterprise Florida:

  • Create a new $250 million competitive fund called the “Florida Enterprise Fund.”
  • Make the Florida Enterprise Fund a state trust fund to replace the existing escrow account to allow the state’s investment to accrue more interest.
  • Increase the Legislature’s role in competing for job creation projects by requiring that any deal over $1 million have the approval of the Speaker of the House and the Senate President, as well as the Governor.
  • Reform the return on investment requirements by eliminating the use of waivers and requiring a 10 percent annualized return on top of the original amount invested in a company.
  • Streamline the state’s approval process while continuing to ensure that NO tax dollars leave the state trust fund until a company meets specific job creation goals spelled out in their contract.

The Beacon Council encourages the Florida Legislature to approve these business generating reforms which enables us and other economic development organizations to be successful in recruiting companies for relocations and expansions to Florida.

Williams added, “Miami-Dade is on a mission to become the global leader for jobs. To do so, we need the support of the Legislature and Enterprise Florida. The partnership between the state and local economic development organizations is essential to growing jobs in Miami-Dade and Florida.”

About The Beacon Council

The Beacon Council, Miami-Dade County’s official economic development partnership, is a public-private organization celebrating its 30th anniversary. Since 1985, the nonprofit has assisted more than 980 businesses that have created more than 65,000 direct jobs and added more than $4 billion in new capital investments. The organization accomplishes this by marketing Miami-Dade as a world-class business location, growing local companies and shaping the local economy’s future. For more information, visit www.beaconcouncil.com