Florida Brownfields Program Facilitates Economic Growth

Aug. 12, 2014

This week, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection released its Florida Brownfield Redevelopment Program Annual Report for fiscal year 2013 -14, which highlights job creation efforts and estimates new capital investment of $194 million in calendar year 2013. The annual report is submitted to the Governor, Florida Senate President and Florida Speaker of the House of Representatives.

The Florida Brownfield Redevelopment Program facilitates redevelopment and job creation by empowering communities, local governments and other stakeholders to work together to assess, clean up and reuse sites that may have been previously impacted by pollutants. Brownfields are properties where expansion, redevelopment or reuse may be complicated by the presence or potential presence of environmental pollution.

Established in 1997, the Florida Brownfield Redevelopment Program utilizes economic and regulatory incentives to encourage the use of private revenue to restore and redevelop sites, create new jobs and boost the local economy. Partners in the Florida Brownfield Redevelopment Program include local governments, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity and Enterprise Florida, Inc.

“Florida’s Brownfield Redevelopment Program continues to facilitate the successful redevelopment of underutilized areas throughout the state,” said Jorge Caspary, director of DEP’s Division of Waste Management. “This program not only makes it possible to mitigate contaminated sites, but also has created more than 10,000 jobs and stimulates the economy in the process.”

Since inception of the program, 75 contaminated sites have been cleaned up, more than 65,000 confirmed and projected direct and indirect jobs have been created, and $2.5 billion in capital investment has been made in designated brownfield areas. To make the program’s incentives available to a community, a local government must designate a brownfields area by resolution. Local governments have designated 362 current brownfield areas statewide.

The annual report identifies the following accomplishments of the program and benefits to Florida in the last fiscal year.

  • Brownfield Area Designations: 18
  • Brownfield Site Rehabilitation Agreements: 15
  • Site Rehabilitation Completion Orders: 10
  • Voluntary Cleanup Tax Credits for Brownfield Sites: 67, totaling $6,645,689

Projected Capital Investment

  • Calendar Year 2013: $194,593,470
  • Calendar Year 2014 (to date): $11,563,995

Projected New Direct and Indirect Jobs

  • Calendar Year 2013: 9,753
  • Calendar Year 2014 (to date): 703

The DEP’s Northwest District is hosting its Second Annual Northwest Florida Brownfield Workshop on August 13 at the Washington County Agricultural Center in Chipley. At the workshop, federal, state and local experts will gather to provide an opportunity for interested parties to learn more about brownfield redevelopment. Topics that will be discussed include updates to Florida brownfield laws, economic incentives, assessment funding and grants. For more information on the workshop, contact Brandy Smith at 850-595-0695 or brandy.m.smith@dep.state.fl.us.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: