Action Steps

Please review the draft Highlands County Economic Development Action Steps summarized below and provide comments below each regarding these action steps.

Question Title

* 1. County Asset:
Infrastructure and select sites

Idea:
Expand Broadband.

Market vacant, shovel-ready land.

Extend central wastewater system south of SR 66/US 98 along the US 27 corridor.

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Work with the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity to identify grants to assist in expanding infrastructure including Broadband.
  • Continue development of public private partnerships.
  • Take work from County’s Strategic Action Plan identifying 10 strategic sites and provide economic analyses.
  • Coordinate with the United States Department of Agriculture for grants for potential utility expansion.
  • Look at Community Development Block Grants as a potential source of infrastructure funding.
  • Continue coordination with the Florida Department of Transportation.

Question Title

* 2. County Asset:
Airport and industry

Idea:
Continued economic development for Avon Park Airport and Sebring Airport.

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Identify niche markets.
  • Apply for Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
  • Community Planning Technical Assistance Grants to compliment the Avon Park Airport Master Plan.
  • Continue coordination with Enterprise Florida.
  • Incorporate the upcoming Aviation Cluster Study into future planning for the airports.
  • Continue marketing efforts of both airports.

Question Title

* 3. County Asset:
Quality of Life, Unique Downtowns

Idea:
Activate Main Street Program in Sebring and Avon Park.

Focus on marketing and management of downtown areas.

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Develop an activities checklist for downtowns in Highlands County including but not limited to farmer’s markets, sidewalk cafes, special events, etc.
  • Review land development regulations for all three cities to ensure flexibility for businesses in downtown areas.
  • Look at potential tax credits for the restoration of historic buildings.
  • Update historic buildings lists in each downtown area.
  • Identify opportunities for enhancement beyond infrastructure including but not limited to unified signage themes and landscaping.

Question Title

* 4. County Asset:
Education, Workforce And Healthcare

Idea:
Incubators for new businesses

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Identify key locations and partners.

County Asset:
South Florida State College (SFSC) – Advanced Manufacturing Program

Idea:
Messaging / marketing of technical programs including Advanced Manufacturing

Proposed Action Steps:
  • SFSC staff to evaluate marketing programs. Evaluate marketing efforts to middle and high schools and community.
  • Market SFSC accreditations including it is the only certified Siemens training facility in Florida.

County Asset:
SFSC – Nursing Program

Idea:
Model Intensive Care Unit (ICU)

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Seek grant funds to develop a model Intensive Care Unit for training purposes.

County Asset:
SFSC – Overall

Idea:
Faculty recruitment and Retention (housing, competitive salaries)

Proposed Action Steps:
  • Work with local affordable housing builders in region to identify needs for affordable housing development.
  • Continue to stress to the Legislature the impact of SFSC on the community and region and its need for additional funding.

Question Title

* 5. Any additional comments? Fill in below. 

0 of 5 answered
 

T