By DUSTY RICKETTS / Daily News
SANDESTIN — Florida’s secretary of commerce says the state has gone
from the minor leagues of economic development to the major league.
Gray Swoope, the secretary of commerce and president and CEO of
Enterprise Florida — the state’s principal economic development
organization — says the state has made major strides the past two years
to improve economic development.
“Florida had and still has good economic developers in place, but what
had happened was the structure failed,” Swoope said. “There was just a
total disconnect. When Gov. Scott came in, he put the pieces together.
It’s still a hard process, but if you have the right people in place,
you have the right attitude in place, you can move forward and make
Swoope stressed the importance of regionalism in the success of
economic development. He compared it to what he called the bear
strategy, which is to make yourself appear bigger than you actually are
if you are attacked by a bear.
“If you look at all those assets that this region offers and you start
marketing together as one, then there’s nobody who can compete with
you,” Swoope said. “You have everything from universities to land to
buildings, professional economic developers, counties that are
pro-business. There’s nobody that can touch you.” More here.