Pasco County has been fortunate. January 1, 2015 marked the beginning of the 10 year renewed Penny for Pasco sales tax referendum that included a provision to use a portion of these funds to incentivize economic development projects.
Supported by the Board's Strategic Plan (PDF) and the Economic Development Plan (PDF) Opens a New Window. , an authorizing Resolution 15-110 dedicated the economic development portion of the Penny for Pasco funds to a specific account known as the Jobs and Economic Opportunity Trust Fund (JEOTF).
Additionally, this resolution states that the Office of Economic Growth Opens a New Window. is charged with the task of accounting for these revenues and expenditures to create target industry jobs for our residents and the region.
Revenue projections for this fund were initially estimated at $45 million dollars and have now climbed to more than $60 million dollars.
Way to go Pasco!
The Jobs and Economic Opportunities Trust Fund spending must meet the requirements set forth in this Resolution 15-110, Section 212.055(d)3., Florida Statutes, Ord. No. 12-16, Res. No. 12-268, and any other applicable legal requirements.
In a separate resolution, the Board of County Commissioners established the Jobs and Economic Opportunities Committee Opens a New Window. who is charged with oversight of the uses of the funds to ensure that the promises made, are promises kept.
Pasco County intends to maintain flexibility for the uses of these funds, however, provisions describe their purpose and intent. The Office of Economic Growth staff may accept solicited or unsolicited proposals and rank programs and projects for available funding.
In the ordinance and resolution authorizing the referendum for November 9, 2012, the Board of County Commissioners promised that the Jobs and Economic Opportunities Trust Fund would:
“…provide financial support for job creation and economic development projects having a general public purpose of improving the local economy…”
and would improve
“…the local economy through incentivizing economic development.”