Serving DeSoto, Hardee, Highlands, Okeechobee and Polk Counties

CFRPC Partners with the Florida Chamber Foundation

April 16, 2013

Bartow, FL (April 12, 2012) – The Florida Chamber Foundation recently announced that all 11 of Florida’s Regional Planning Council’s (RPCs) have completed their Comprehensive Economic Development Strategies (CEDS) using the Foundation’s Six Pillars framework and will become the Foundation’s strategic partners in demonstrating the value of the Six Pillars across the state. Designated as federal economic development districts, the RPCs promote economic development throughout the state in partnership with local economic development organizations and the business community.  The CEDS completed by the Central Florida Regional Planning Council, based in Bartow, is available on the organization’s website, http://www.cfrpc.org/download/publications/CEDS_2012.pdf.

The CEDS plans are completed with a five-year horizon and are a requirement of the U.S. Economic Development Administration, elevating the Six Pillars from a statewide effort to the federal level. The Six Pillars offer a framework for local chambers of commerce, economic development organizations and other community leadership groups to facilitate long-term planning while focusing on short-term action. Statewide organizations such as the Florida Chamber of Commerce, Workforce Florida, Florida Association of Counties, VISIT FLORIDA and the Department of Economic Opportunity are all utilizing the Six Pillars as a collaborative tool to move their efforts forward. The RPCs will join the ranks of these state partners, and the counties of Jackson, Palm Beach and Broward counties whom have all adopted the Six Pillars as well.

“The RPCs partnership with the business community is fundamental for Florida’s economic success,” said Bentina Terry, Vice President at Gulf Power and Chair of the Florida Chamber Foundation. “Their adoption of the Six Pillars clearly shows that the RPCs understand the importance of that partnership and the value of the Six Pillars in aligning our efforts.”

As stewards of economic growth across Florida, the RPCs clearly understand that alignment with the business community will strengthen their economic development efforts and foster more opportunities for the entire state, including rural areas. The RPCs will play a strong role in the next phase of the Chamber Foundation’s Six Pillars Community program in their respective regions, impacting the entire state of Florida.

“The Heartland region has great opportunity to expand logistics and trade, life science and healthcare, and the emerging energy economy. Working together with the business community, and with the alignment of local, regional, state and federal strategies brings us new options to bring jobs to our region, said Pat Steed, Executive Director of the Central Florida Regional Planning Council.”

“The Foundation looks forward to working with the RPCs,” said Tony Carvajal, Executive Vice President of the Florida Chamber Foundation. “Every community and corner of the state now has a strong partner and friend working to ensure they grow and prosper.”

The RPCs will become an official Six Pillars Community at their June Policy Board Meeting being held in conjunction with the Florida Association of Counties Annual Conference.

“I congratulate the RPCs on the completion of their CEDS plans focused on the Six Pillars of Florida’s future,” said Mark Wilson, President & CEO of the Florida Chamber. “Not only does this show the power of the Six Pillars at the state level, but the federal level will be able to see the good work taking place in Florida through the RPCs.”

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