Thursday, August 29th, 2013 at 9:02am

Clermont Company’s Move to Sumter Should be Warning

Posted by admin

In Sunday’s Daily Commercial was a small story on MEMCO, a manufacturer that builds Envirosafe above ground fuel systems, which is relocating from Clermont to Sumter County.  According to the news release, MEMCO outgrew its Clermont facility and relocated to a larger facility with an estimated $1.2 million in capital investments to upgrade equipment.

According to the report, the company chose Sumter County because it was “…a perfect fit due to the land and building value, the available workforce in the area and the cooperation from the Sumter County Economic Development.”  The company plans to create 25 to 35 new jobs in the new facility, which plans to house its sales, production and administrative offices.

First and foremost, congratulations to MEMCO for thriving in a tough economy.  It is obvious the company is well managed with businesspeople who understand how to create a profit.  Also, congratulations to the Sumter County Economic Development team who has consistently beaten Lake County’s efforts over the last four years.  Losing this company should serve as a real wake-up call for the people who are in charge of Lake County, South Lake and Clermont.

MEMCO’s departure, along with its 25-35 new jobs, is a blow to Lake County, and it enhances systemic issues that Lake County officials have not come to grips with, such as:

  • Lake County cannot comprehend other counties are competing for jobs.  Because of the internet, location is not the primary driver for businesses to relocate to an area.  Beautiful lakes do not lower the fixed costs of potential businesses.
  • MEMCO, in their news release, said land and building value was a major consideration in the move.  Capital investment will go where it is welcomed and their move to Sumter County should be a real warning to Lake County.  Cost matters; ease of construction matters; over-the-top government bureaucracies matter; and attitude toward new business matters.
  • Transportation impact fees in South Lake County will run more businesses to other areas, including North Lake.  Anyone who tells you costly transportation impact fees will not have an effect on job creation and where a business chooses to locate is a fool.
  • Sumter County’s Economic Development is probably the sharpest team in the state–they are totally focused on job and business creation.  Lake County’s efforts are skewed by issues that try to accommodate no-growth aspects to certain factions in the county.  If Lake County is not careful it will become the poorest county in Central Florida.

It really comes down to attitude in Lake County.  Frankly, if you listen to some of the comments made by our local officials there is no respect for private capital or entrepreneurs.  The South Lake and Clermont area has become a place where people want to live but not make a living–the opposite should be true.

Last week at a business convention in Orlando, Osceola County Commission Chairman Frank Attkisson told a group that Osceola County can now 30-day fast-track construction approvals of new facilities for job creation.

The Lake County Commission talks about aggressive economic development, but thus far it has not delivered.  Good intentions mean nothing without meaningful actions.

If attitudes don’t change, Lake County should expect more companies to find homes elsewhere like Sumter and Osceola Counties, who are not playing games when it comes to competing with Lake County.

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4 Responses to “Clermont Company’s Move to Sumter Should be Warning”

  1. They claim to have been investigating this for almost two years. If so they are slow but, at least they took our one criminal. Thousands more of them are doing the same thing – and why?

    Why do they have to steal when they have big fat paychecks and retirement benefits and some of them even retire, keep on working and retire again tow or three times!

    Follow this case, this guy is a FHP Lieutenant – they will make a deal with him he will never serve one day in prison and they will let him draw his retirement, and his friends will keep right on stealing until they are caught and the cycle will start all over again.

    Florida Highway Patrol Lt. Robert K. Purser was arrested Aug. 28, 2013. He faces three counts of grand theft over $20,000. The same day, he was also dismissed from the FHP, an FHP spokeswoman confirmed. (Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office / August 29, 2013)

    Purser’s company was supplying off-duty law enforcement officers for traffic enforcement to Hialeah-based Gulfstream Engineering, Inc., according to the affidavit.

    Prosecutors allege that Purser perpetrated an “organized scheme to defraud” Gulfstream by overbilling the company $31,667.00 in 2010, $86,578.75 in 2011, and $90,148.50 in 2012 – or $208,394.25 in total.

    According to the affidavit, Florida Highway Patrol documents show that Purser filed the necessary forms with FHP as a scheduler for off-duty troopers in 2010, 2011 and 2012. Those forms were approved by the Troop Commander, according to the affidavit.

    Officers were deployed to road closures at Gulfstream’s maintenance and rehabilitation of the Florida East Coast Railroad sites throughout the state, prosecutors said.

  2. You see the real problem here is everyone is so dumb they believe that if you “Keep bringing thesse storeis (sic) to our attention b/c sooner or later the intelligent vote will over-power the stupid, selfish and uninformed.”

    Telling the truth and educating the people as to what is going on is very important but, the people have to do their own research and verify their findings to insure they are not being further deceived. A prime example of that is; Does everyone out there realize that the Federal Reserve is a PRIVATE CORPORATION with a contract with congress for services rendered and is not owned by the United State of America and its citizens?

    A lot can be said for little old Clermont. They got the DNA on one of those dead bodies they found on the old Poole property but what about the investigation?

    “They” brought now former Chief Steve Graham (formerly assistant Chief of Boynton Beach)and he brought his friend Jim Loughnan up here from (Palm Beach County) Corral Gables area.

    When things got tough for this dynamic duo the old hag from the bankrupt rag started her spins to save the day. When all else failed and Clermont officials had to come up with a quasi solution they let Graham retire and the old hag from the bankrupt rag (aka, part time HR director for her friend the sheriff) put Steve Graham to work as a courthouse deputy.

    Now this all sounds like just doing regular monkey business in little old Lake County but, when you take into consideration that Governor Scott recently removed the sheriff of Liberty County Florida from office and replaced him with a 22 year retired police officer from Corral Gables Palm Beach County Florida; it makes one wonder do these people all really know each other and are then in the same clique with each other? Do you really have to come from Corral Gables and the Palm Beach area to get special jobs and privileges and treatment?

    Maybe we should send Jimmy down there and have him recycled. With some Palm Beach training he could be a first class “cronie” of the corruption empire.

  3. Name says:

    They won’t listen, they are too self absorbed and detemined to ruin this county for their own needs and greed. Keep bringing thesse storeis to our attention b/c sooner or later the intelligent vote will over-power the stupid, selfish and uninformed. Thanks for all your efforts to care and put our US Constitution and dreams of our Forefathers to life again!

  4. Name says:

    The attitudes won’t change until the people with the wrong attitudes are replaced. A stagnant pond needs fresh water to survive.

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