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Economic Development Meeting Notes
June 18, 2009

The following are points that were produced in a discussion with citizens representing Walton County and various groups/organization.


Strengths

  • State Land

  • Diversity of
    • Lifestyle
    • Natural resources
    • Cultural resources
    • Recreational avenues
  • Airport
  • Industrial park
  • Enterprise zones
  • Land
  • BRAC


Weaknesses

  • Geographic separation within the county

  • Too much dependence on tourism
  • US Hwy 331 (public safety/evacuation routes)
  • No public transportation
  • Lack of family entertainment
  • Affordable housing
  • Affordable daycare
  • Lack of infrastructure
  • Communication technology
  • Politics
  • Tedious planning, zoning, permitting process
  • No convention center


Opportunities

  • Avoid mistakes of the neighboring areas

  • Brain power economic development, technology
  • Import business water ports, railroad
  • Eco-tourism
  • Bio-energy, landfill


Threats

  • Hurricane

  • Competition (Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina)
  • Civic inertia
  • Splintering along historic biases
  • Failure to act
  • Planning too broad


Types of Businesses to attract/develop

  • Science
  • Technology
  • Engineering
  • Manufacturing
  • Family entertainment
  • Eco-tourism
  • Agro-tourism primarily in the North Walton