Almost two weeks ago an article revealed Florida’s President and CEO of Enterprise Florida, Gray Swoope. To this radio show host, Gray Swoope has been a well kept secret in our state. http://www6.lexisnexis.com/publisher/EndUser?Action=UserDisplayFullDocument&orgId=574&topicId=100020423&docId=l:1547932439&Em=7&start=1 Swoope has been in his job as “Florida Job Czar” since March 21st. It is Swoope’s mission to bring jobs to Florida. Governor Rick Scott is depending on Swoope to fulfill his $300,000 salary for the best interests of our citizens in this state.
The radio show has continually reminded its listener that Florida will not grow and prosper unless business and elected officials begin to understand the scope of the drug problem in our state and the economic ramifications.
Dependence, addiction, crime, incarceration, drug related deaths, drug testing, fraud, homelessness related to drugs and alcohol (the list is considerable) combined with the head in the sand attitude of the leaders in our state will prevent Swoope from succeeding. Globally thinking forward thinking business CEO’s and planners need communities whose police are not chasing an inordinate amount of drug deals all day long. Pinellas County has had to add fifteen drug diversion investigators to the payroll over the last three years. Every police chief in the state can share what drugs are doing to our communities.
It is preposterous to believe that as the drug distribution and corresponding incapacitation of too many young people continues in our state major business entities will invest in our state. Corporate tax breaks without a restructuring of our tenets of preparing our work force in what should be their most productive years is doomed for failure. Focusing on education must include educating our schools that Florida cannot succeed unless we get the drug epidemic under control.
My hope is for Gray Swoope to succeed. Presently, he doesn’t have all the tools he needs for long term success.