EDC’s public-private partnership lures and retains jobs

EDC photo

Economic Development Council interim President Kay Rasmussen indicates a presentation slide during her appearance before the chamber of commerce’s Government Issues committee.

BRIAN HUGHES | News Bulletin
Published: Friday, January 11, 2013 at 03:23 PM.

CRESTVIEW — A public-private partnership between Okaloosa County’s Economic Development Council and local government and business has added hundreds of new jobs at Bob Sikes Airport.

As the News Bulletin reported in November 2012, L3 Crestview Aerospace began construction last month on an administration building on two acres of land south of the current administration building. Work on an 80,000-square-foot hangar on L3’s local campus will begin later this year, Jeff Barger, the company’s vice president and general manager, said.

The expansion would bring 340 new jobs to the airport’s biggest tenant while retaining approximately 80 positions, EDC interim President Kay Rasmussen said. The campus’ expansion represents a $13.7 million capital investment.

Speaking to the Crestview Area Chamber of Commerce’s Government Issues committee at its Wednesday meeting, Rasmussen explained the council’s role as the county’s economic development organization.

“The EDC is a non-profit, independent organization funded by private business owners that realize if we are successful in our objectives, it’s going to help them,” Rasmussen said. Public sector members include the city of Crestview.

“By us doing our job and being successful, the city benefits,” Rasmussen said. “They get new businesses in their community and increases in tax revenue.”

 She praised Crestview as being “very pro-business,” and mentioned the city’s efforts to streamline business development and eliminate some impact fees.



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