|– Supporting the construction, expansion or the rehabilitation of office and industrial buildings will allow employers to expand and create jobs|
– The application period for funding will open for 60 days beginning January 11, 2021
– Pinellas Employment Sites Program (ESP) application details are available at PCED.org/esp
– Cities, developers asked to help identify capital projects for funding through Penny for Pinellas
Pinellas County’s Employment Sites Program (ESP) supported by Penny for Pinellas funding will begin accepting applications for funding on Monday, January 11, 2021. Proposed capital projects that include new construction, expansion or the rehabilitation of office, industrial flex and industrial manufacturing space will be the focus of this first round of funding. The goal is to support growth opportunities for new and existing companies in target industries such as aviation, aerospace, medical device manufacturing, defense and information technology. The program funding period will be open for 60 days, and application details are available at PCED.org/esp.
“Redevelopment of office and industrial spaces in Pinellas County is essential for our growing employers,” said Commissioner Dave Eggers, 2021 Chair of the Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners. “Without space to expand, businesses cannot continue to grow in Pinellas and create new jobs, and hopefully, higher wage jobs for our citizens.”
Pinellas County Economic Development is seeking input from local developers and municipalities to learn more about capital projects that may qualify for the ESP funding. The program’s webpage details how the Employment Sites Program funds can be used for eligible capital projects.
“The Employment Sites Program is part of Pinellas County’s Strategic Plan to foster continual economic vitality and support job growth,” said Barry Burton, County Administrator. “We’re hoping to accelerate private investment in office and industrial space for growing employers in our community.”
“All economic development ultimately comes down to a real estate transaction. No matter how good our business climate is and how badly businesses want to be here, they cannot locate here if we have no office or industrial space suitable for them,” said Mike Meidel, Director of Pinellas County Economic Development. “This program is designed to ensure that we have adequate and appropriate space to provide quality jobs for our citizens for years to come.”
Pinellas County voters approved the use of the Penny for Pinellas sales tax funding for economic development capital projects and affordable housing in 2017. A Joint Review Committee made up of County and municipal staff developed guidelines for the spending of these funds. In December 2019, the Pinellas County Board of County Commissioners approved the guidelines. The Penny IV Countywide Affordable Housing and Economic Development Capital Project Funds are to be utilized to facilitate economic development and strategic investments in the local economy while also supporting the expansion affordable housing. The program demonstrates the County’s commitment to support economic development and facilitate the growth of the local economy through partnerships with local municipalities and the private sector.
In July 2020, Pinellas County opened the first round of funding for affordable housing projects under the Penny IV guidelines. More information on affordable housing funds can be found here:
About Pinellas County Economic Development: Pinellas County Economic Development (PCED) works with existing businesses to encourage expansion and seeks to attract new companies with high-wage careers to our community. Through investment tools, business classes, professional consulting services, trade missions to open new markets, and strategic partnerships, PCED fosters a pro-business environment and promotes the ideal business climate of Pinellas County, Florida.