After months of preparation, the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce is ready to launch a separate agency for economic development. Among other things, it gets the Chamber out from under Florida’s Sunshine Law.
Chamber President Jerry Maygarden proposed the separation last year and on Monday, the chamber’s Board of Directors approved it during a special meeting. The Pensacola-Escambia County Promotion and Economic Development Commission is an independent 501(c) entity, much like the tourism promoter Visit Pensacola.
Florida’s Great Northwest -- the region’s economic development marketing organization -- is sending a five-member delegation to Great Britain in hopes of securing aviation jobs for this region.
The entourage will attend the Farnborough Air Show – an event in southeastern England where aviation firms get together to wheel and deal in the latest aircraft, helicopters and related goods and services.
Some major changes could be on the horizon at the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce, with the ultimate goal of getting it out of the sunshine.
The Chamber’s board of directors gave unanimous approval last week to begin the trek to privatize the organization. That would make the new Chamber arrangement exempt from Florida’s Sunshine Law that covers open meetings and records.
In this week’s Economic Report, Dr. Rick Harper discusses the third quarter Gross Domestic Product, which reflected an increase of 2.85 percent, stronger than the second quarter GDP estimate of 1.9 percent.
Harper credits the increase with growth in inventory investment and in structures and residential investments.
Additionally, payroll provider ADP reports that Florida’s growth in private sector jobs has slowed to about 8500 jobs in September. Harper says that’s still short of pre recession levels of about 13,000 new jobs per month.