Southwest - Business Briefs
BROOKSVILLE — Roger’s Christmas House Village, an iconic business and tourist attraction downtown, has closed after nearly 40 years.
CITRUS COUNTY — Technology Conservation Group has received a $32,000 jobs grant incentive from the Citrus County Economic Development Council. The electronics recycling company announced plans to expand its facility in Lecanto and add 16 jobs.
COLLIER COUNTY — The county’s impact fee relief program exempted more than $1.2 million worth of impact fees during the program’s first year. County commissioners waived the fee to encourage businesses to expand.
FORT MYERS — A four-year, $60-million project to renovate 52 downtown blocks has been completed. The results include new streetlights, sidewalks, curbs and brick-accented streets, as well as improvements to water, wastewater and stormwater systems.
» Construction has started on Florida Gulf Coast University’s Innovation Hub research park. University officials say the 241-acre site will eventually be home to 1.2 million square feet of research space, including a $12-million building planned for FGCU.
LAKELAND — Sybac Solar, which designs and installs photovoltaic systems, has announced plans to move into a 10,000-sq.-ft. facility and hire 10 people this year. The company is the U.S. subsidiary of Sybac Germany.
» The University of South Florida, which has announced plans to locate a school of pharmacy on the campus of USF-Polytechnic, has signed an affiliation agreement with the Tampa-based pharmaceutical company CoreRx. The agreement enables students to intern at CoreRx and CoreRx scientists to teach at the school as volunteers.
» Naples resident James Ray plans to donate $7.5 million to the Central Florida Aerospace Academy at Sun ‘n Fun, which will allow the academy to build a larger facility and increase enrollment from 120 to 500 students.
ODESSA — Dais Analytic, a nanotechnology company, will hire 200 workers as a result of a $48-million contract it signed with CAST Systems Control Technology and Genertec-America.
PASCO COUNTY — The county will use $30 million in federal funds to purchase foreclosed and abandoned houses and then help residents buy the homes.
SARASOTA — Sunovia Energy Technologies, which is relocating to Sarasota from southern Manatee County, announced plans to hire 68 over the next three years. The company designs, develops and markets solar and LED lighting products.
» Biotechnology company Osprey Biotechnics plans a 35-employee expansion over the next three years. The company makes beneficial bacterial products for animals and plants and for environmental restoration.
ST. PETERSBURG — Edith “Edie” Loebenberg, who with her husband, Walter, founded the Florida Holocaust Museum, died April 19. Born in Germany, she and her family fled to the U.S. in 1938 amid rising anti-Semitism. She was 84.
» Humana Cares, which provides health information via the telephone, plans to hire another 140 workers, bringing its total employment in St. Petersburg to 500.
» Two years after a $4-million revamp of downtown’s Albert Whitted Airport, the facility finally has a restaurant: Hangar Restaurant and Flight Lounge.
TAMPA — The University of South Florida will get $6 million in federal stimulus money to encourage Tampa area doctors to start using electronic medical records. Some of the money will be used to hire 100 “e-ambassadors” who will meet with area doctors and explain the advantages of the university’s PaperFree Florida initiative.