Staying on message

Published: Friday, November 30, 2012 at 10:03 AM.

Consider two recent deals Holt’s team led.

One was a deal with the State of Delaware to sell or lease the Port of Wilmington. That was near completion more than two years after being initiated.

Another was running a rail line through Los Angeles to the Port of Los Angeles, a $2 billion endeavor. That took six years.

Consider also the most prominent effort by the previous formation of the EDC, which actually included an active public/private partnership.

The former director was working on a series of deals to create something of a renewable energy research and operational center of Gulf County.

A woody biomass plant was the centerpiece, and never came to fruition when financing became an issue, but the other centerpiece was a grow operation for newly-engineered fast-growing plants.

That project, at one time, had the support of the St. Joe Company and Florida’s Great Northwest, a quasi-public economic development organization, but after the director was shown his walking papers that project disappeared.

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