Dialing for jobs

While the Hillsborough BOCC is reexamining the need to open up the Urban Service Area along I-4, how are they doing at finding a “partner” to bring High-tech/high-wage jobs to the 57-acre parcel just east of I-75 near USF that the County acquired several years ago for $1 million? 

The April 2010 “Florida Trend” magazine quotes Tampa Bay Partnership president Stuart Rogel as being concerned about the 25% commercial vacancy rate in Westshore. This isn’t the only area of Hillsborough with “inventory.” 

If we can’t even find takers for commercial land and buildings already available, including our own “investment”, how can we realistically expect to attract potential employers to an area with no roads, no water and two pages of hoops to jump through? 

We have at least three “economic development” task force plan/studies going on right now.

Is anybody just picking up the phone and calling potential employers to say that Hillsborough is “open for business”? 

Even without an internal auditor it might be possible to review the log of outbound calls/contacts made from the County to potential employers.  

I hope we are not just stuck in the “planning to call” mode and have not yet moved into the actual “making contact” mode.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen

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