What about jobs now?

The May 14, 2010 Tampa Tribune reported that the federal Economic Development agency awarded $540,100 to the Tampa Bay Partnership and the Regional Planning Council “to study how they should focus their economic development efforts.”

With the money the two organizations will “study which industries are expected to grow and add the most value to the region.”

Hasn’t anyone looked out a window lately?  The Tampa Bay region averages 360 days of sun each year. We also have one of the most polluting coal-fired electric plants in the nation. Anyone else think that solar is a growth industry?

The state of New Mexico is jumping ahead with solar and clean energy. Hillsborough needs to aggressively compete for investment if it wants to create clean industry clusters and capture its share of economic development from clean energy and clean technology.

Couldn’t we have instead taken that half-million dollar federal study grant and funded an incentive program for a clean energy company to actually locate here? I’m pretty sure there is a 90,000 square foot facility that would be willing to donate the first year’s lease payments to the cause.

<IMHO> Fred Jacobsen


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