Florida governor Rick Scott recognized Pensacola mayor Ashton Hayward this morning in his annual State of the State address.

Hayward was recognized along with five other Florida mayors: Mayor Bob Buckhorn of Tampa, Mayor Lenny Curry of Jacksonville, Mayor Buddy Dyer of Orlando, Mayor Randy Henderson of Fort Myers, and Mayor Van Johnson of Apalachicola.

Scott characterized the mayors as “just a few of the mayors who have supported our proposal to create the new $250 million Florida Enterprise Fund.” Scott is pushing legislators to establish the new fund, which he said will help “diversify Florida’s economy, support our small businesses, and help Florida become the number one place in the world for families to get a good paying job.”

The new fund would replace other incentives programs such as the state’s Quick Action Closing Fund.

In a news release, the governor’s office highlighted several “jobs wins” in the Pensacola area, including Navy Federal Credit Union with its approximately 7,200 new jobs, Financial Management & Investment Corporation with 15 new jobs, International Paper Pensacola Mill with 12 new jobs, and West Fraser, Inc. with 105 new jobs.

Since December 2010, the Pensacola area’s unemployment rate has declined from 9.9 to 4.7 percent. The area has added an estimated 3,300 new jobs over the past year, state officials said.

To watch Governor Scott’s State of the State address, head over to C-SPAN.


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