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Florida Chambers of Commerce expects population surge for Leon County

Leon County population surge requires 15,000 additional jobs
Posted at 6:27 PM, Feb 16, 2023

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — “So, we really need to do this right. We need to work on our schools, we need to work on our transportation, environment, and we really need to grow private sector jobs,” said Mark Wilson, President & CEO of Florida Chamber of Commerce.

In an event hosted by the Tallahassee Chambers of Commerce, the Florida Chambers showcased Florida’s economic forecast and revealed numbers that might shock you. By the year of 2030, Leon County is expected to increase in population anywhere between 20,000 to 45,000 people, meaning more jobs will need to be created.

“Good economic policy that’s good for everyone allows everyone to set up businesses and succeed,” said Ben Tabatabaei, Chief Economist for the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

An arena the director for the Office of Economic Vitality Keith Bowers said they’ve already begun exploring. They currently have 14 projects already in motion that will create 1500 jobs in the next two years, projects such as Amazon, Dan Foss Turbocor, and Tallahassee’s International Airport.

“We have basically taken a very strategic approach to creating a talent pipeline and making sure that we gathered jobs and gotten the people in place when the jobs are here,” said Keith Bowers, Director for the Office Economic of Vitality.

The projected population boom isn’t helping another issue that’s impacting people nationwide.

That’s inflation, specifically the cost of food. In Florida, food has increased more than 10 percent over the last year. The Chamber said that trend isn’t slowing down any time soon.

Lemon Drop President Bre Bennet said this could impact their ability to help those in need with their food distribution services.

"Meats, eggs, dairy, anything on the protein side do not come in,” said Bennet.

Bennet, already laying the groundwork by increasing partnerships with bigger food distribution agencies.

This will play a role in how they are able to help provide food to those in need.

"We are going to be expanding. We're going to do a much larger outreach. We're going to partner with the local farm share distribution point where we'll get fresh food, fresh vegetables." said Bennet.