NORTH PORT, Fla. – Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced a $1.69 million award to the City of North Port through the Florida Job Growth Grant Fund for the installation of water and wastewater infrastructure across 500 acres at the Panacea Activity Center. The City of North Port represents 20 percent of Sarasota County’s growth over the past 10 years, but 90 percent of the workforce commute to work outside the city’s borders. The City of North Port is matching the state’s investment, resulting in a project that is estimated to create as many as 9,700 new, permanent jobs to support the area’s self-sufficiency. This announcement was the final stop on Governor DeSantis’ weeklong tour announcing investments in small and rural communities.“I’m pleased to award nearly $1.7 million to North Port for the installation of water and wastewater infrastructure, creating jobs and bringing industry to this growing region,” said Governor Ron DeSantis.“This is a great community, but most people are commuting elsewhere to work – today, we are investing in infrastructure that will provide opportunities for people to work right here in North Port. By having commonsense policies, keeping our economy open and investing in small and rural communities, we have protected the jobs and livelihoods of thousands of Floridians throughout the state, and will continue to support them.” “Under Governor DeSantis’ leadership, the Department is committed to assisting communities with funding to develop their economy,” said Secretary Dane Eagle of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.“The infrastructure improvements at Panacea Activity Center will further advance existing infrastructure and improve economic resiliency.” “I am honored to partner with Governor DeSantis and Secretary Eagle in helping Florida’s communities promote economic growth,” said Florida Secretary of Commerce Jamal Sowell, President & CEO of Enterprise Florida, Inc. “These improvements will enhance the lives of those in North Port and continue to attract new businesses and create jobs for the area.” The Florida Job Growth Grant Fund is an economic development program designed to promote public infrastructure and workforce training across the state. Proposals are reviewed by the Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and Enterprise Florida, Inc., (EFI) and chosen by the Governor to meet the demands for workforce training or infrastructure needs in communities around the state. In 2020-21, $74 million in awards have been allocated for projects that focus on rapidly developing a highly skilled workforce and on infrastructure initiatives that attract businesses, create jobs and promote economic growth. DEO and EFI are currently accepting proposals. For more information, visit www.Floridajobs.org/jobgrowth.