Economy

Highway 98’s changing face

Highway 98’s changing face

Two more commercial developments have received development orders along U.S. Hwy. 98, a Walmart Neighborhood Market and Navarre Gardens Assisted Living Facility, furthering a trend of growth in business along the corridor. Read the full article in the Feb. 16 issue of Navarre Press. Subscribe online at navarrepress.com for as little as $38 per year.

Will economy take a hit from jobs freeze?

Will economy take a hit from jobs freeze?

In a presidential memorandum released Jan. 23, President Trump ordered a freeze on the hiring of Federal civilian employees. The order said no vacant positions existing at noon Jan. 22 may be filled and no new positions could be created, except in limited circumstances. Read the full article in the Feb. 9 issue of Navarre […]

Entrepreneurial spirits running high in Navarre

Entrepreneurial spirits running high in Navarre

In 2015, Santa Rosa County witnessed the growth of many new homes and businesses in the area. With new families and opportunities arriving steadily each year, growth for previous years has become a popular subject for public elation. However, the prospect of the upcoming year has left many citizens speculating as to whether this kind […]

Holidays stall job openings in Santa Rosa County

Holidays stall job openings in Santa Rosa County

Gov. Rick Scott issued a press release touting the highest level of Florida jobs available in a decade, with a total of nearly 300,000 openings across the state. “Florida is leading all large states in job growth and we will keep working every day to be first for jobs,” Scott said. Job demand in Florida […]

Restaurants want to increase hours for alcohol sales

Restaurants want to increase hours for alcohol sales

  A 1991 ordinance allows beach establishments to sell alcohol until 2:30 a.m. while businesses in the rest of the county are required to stop selling alcohol at midnight. The Navarre Area Board of Realtors (NABOR) released a statement to its members last week stating that NABOR “unanimously supports the creation of a fair and […]

Economic development group makes hard sell

Economic development group makes hard sell

It’s not easy selling a community to outside businesses and investors. Despite incentives, such as tax breaks and free land, recruiting industry is a challenge, especially when other states are wooing the same companies. Competition can be fierce. Cliff Krut, a certified economic development representative for Gulf Power, explained how Northwest Florida, specifically Santa Rosa […]

Tourism numbers continue to increase

Tourism numbers continue to increase

Tourism is booming in Santa Rosa County, Tourist Development Director Julie Morgan said at the Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce’s monthly breakfast July 31. “We are flying higher than we ever have been,” she told the audience. “So we really need to be proud of ourselves.” Morgan’s office is responsible for promoting Santa Rosa […]

Wee Market provides big business opportunity for community

Wee Market provides big business opportunity for community

Holly and Abdul Elassaad have owned Pet Nation in the Shoppes of Navarre for more than a decade. But they have been eager to create opportunities for other small businesses and finally decided it was time to make it happen. And that is where the idea for Wee Market was born. Wee Market will be […]

Back-to-school tax-free holiday starts Friday

Back-to-school tax-free holiday starts Friday

Florida’s annual back-to-school sales tax holiday kicks off Friday, Aug. 7, and runs through Aug. 16. According to the Florida Retail Federation, the 10-day event is the longest back-to-school shopping holiday since its inception in 1998. Shoppers have two full weekends to shop-tax free. The tax-free holiday applies to: Clothing, footwear, and certain accessories selling […]

Santa Rosa still on economic recovery trail

Santa Rosa still on economic recovery trail

Santa Rosa County’s bounce back from the Great Recession of 2009 and 2010 isn’t complete, according to its jobless rate. But the way we were as a labor market may not come again. The county’s unemployment rate as of June, 4.9 percent, reflects great improvement over the peak of 10 percent in January 2010. Santa […]

Groundbreaking ushers in hotel construction

Groundbreaking ushers in hotel construction

County officials and hotelier Marilyn Hess are gathering at Navarre Beach for this morning’s official groundbreaking of SpringHill Suites, which will replace the former Holiday Inn which was razed following Hurricane Ivan in 2004. The planned seven-story Marriott-family hotel will include 161 guest rooms, a Gulf-front full-service restaurant, and two pools – an indoor pool on the second […]

Luxury apartments nearing completion

Luxury apartments nearing completion

The tight rental market is about to get relief. In less than two months, the first of five buildings, along with the welcome center, will open at the Sound at Navarre. Located just east of Joybrook Road in Navarre, the property includes 250 units and boasts 303,479 square feet of building space and two underground […]

Major grocery-based shopping center eyed for South Santa Rosa

Major grocery-based shopping center eyed for South Santa Rosa

A major international company is eyeing development of  a large grocery-based shopping center along the U.S. 98 corridor west of Navarre. The project was revealed during Monday’s county commission meeting when the board was asked to vacate property located in Holley By the Sea (HBTS). Belie Williams, representing HBTS Homeowners’ Improvement Association, asked the county to vacate an undeveloped right of way […]

Santa Rosa’s industrial business boom

Santa Rosa’s industrial business boom

Santa Rosa County recently released its 2014 annual report highlighting the county’s successes, and those related to economic development stand out. A drive through Santa Rosa County Industrial Park also underscores the triumphs of the county’s economic development office (EDO) during the past few years under the leadership of Director Shannon Ogletree, who assumed his […]

Florida nabs No. 2 rank in nation for business

Florida nabs No. 2 rank in nation for business

Florida came in second behind Texas as the state with the best business climate in America. The results came from a triennial survey given to hundreds of business executives and conducted by Development Counsellors International, a firm specializing in all phases of economic development and travel marketing. Local economist Rick Harper, Ph.D. of the University of West Florida said the number 2 ranking will attract businesses outside of our typical […]

Airport reports most travelers since May 2011

Airport reports most travelers since May 2011

Pensacola International Airport reported that traffic through the airport in July was the highest monthly total since May 2011. According to a report released Aug. 18, the airport experienced growth in passenger travel, as well as air freight for July 2014 when compared to a year earlier. Read more in the Aug. 21 issue of Navarre Press […]

Jobless rates up across the region

Jobless rates up across the region

All area counties saw increases in their unemployment rates from June to July 2014. For Santa Rosa, Escambia and Okaloosa counties, July marked the third consecutive month that their unemployment rates had increased. Unemployment rates in Santa Rosa and Escambia counties are above the state and national averages, while Okaloosa and Walton counties remain below. […]

Residents oppose Soundside rezoning

Residents oppose Soundside rezoning

A company looking to develop about 185 acres along Soundside Drive invited nearby property owners to an informational meeting July 31 in an effort to alleviate concerns many had expressed prior to the county’s zoning board meeting in June. About 60 people arrived at the meeting opposed to the company’s rezoning request that would allow smaller lots sizes on […]

School shoppers save Aug. 1 – 3

School shoppers save Aug. 1 – 3

The State of Florida’s “Back to School” tax-free holiday begins at 12:01 a.m., Aug. 1 and continues through 11:59 p.m., Aug. 3. The state estimates Florida residents will save at least $40 million over the three-day, tax-free holiday. A complete list of school supplies and other useful information about Navarre area schools is available in […]

Do you do ‘Tax Free Shopping?’

Do you do ‘Tax Free Shopping?’

Florida’s second sales tax holiday of the year is Aug. 1 – 3 and is promoted by the state as the “Back to School holiday.” Shoppers won’t be charged sales tax on purchases of clothing, footwear and certain accessories selling for $100 or less per item, certain school supplies selling for $15 or less per item, and on the […]

‘Record breaking’ July 4th weekend

‘Record breaking’ July 4th weekend

Several Navarre area businesses reported their busiest and best July Fourth holiday weekend ever. “The weekend was record breaking for us on both Friday and Saturday,” said Angie Lee, director of Sales at Hampton Inn and Suites in Navarre. “The weather was pitch perfect and there were so many tourists in town,” said Tommy’s Snowballs […]

What creates jobs?

What creates jobs?

When most people think about economic development, they think of companies choosing to locate and create jobs in a new community. But according to Bentina Terry from Gulf Power, recruiting new companies is only one part of the economic development puzzle. “Hunting and gathering is what you hear about. It’s when you try to convince […]

Signs of the season

Signs of the season

Local businesses and residents know that the summer tourist season officially is underway on the Emerald Coast including Navarre Beach. AAA Travel estimated 36.1 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home during the Memorial Day holiday weekend, a 1.5 percent increase from last year.  Additionally, AAA reports more than eight in 10 travelers will drive to […]

Local housing market posts gains

Local housing market posts gains

A report released last week by Florida Realtors® showed housing sales in the Pensacola-Ferry Pass-Brent MSA, which includes Santa Rosa and Escambia counties, outpaced sales in other northwest Florida locations stretching as far as Panama City. The report showed a 25.7 percent increase in single family home sales in Santa Rosa and Escambia counties between […]

Gulf Power completes U.S. 98 streetlight project

Gulf Power completes U.S. 98 streetlight project

Gulf Power has just completed the installation of nearly 1,000 LED streetlights from Bayshore Road in Gulf Breeze east through Navarre to the Okaloosa County line to help keep drivers more safe when traveling at night. The $2.5 million project was part of a partnership with the Florida Department of Transportation and Santa Rosa County […]

Friday, Saturday after Thanksgiving declared license-free fishing days

Friday, Saturday after Thanksgiving declared license-free fishing days

Friday, Nov. 29 will be a license-free freshwater fishing day and Saturday, November 30 will be a saltwater license-free fishing day, the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission and Governor Rick Scott announced on Wednesday. There are eight license-free fishing days per year, where the requirement to have a recreational fishing license is waived for […]

Gulf Power rates to increase in January

Gulf Power rates to increase in January

Gulf Power customers might notice a slight increase on their utility bills in 2014, as beginning in January the company will be charging higher “recovery charges.” According to Jeff Rogers, Corporate Communications Manager for Gulf Power, the state’s Public Service Commission approved a 7.6 percent increase in the recovery charges. To read more, subscribe online or pick […]

Southwest Airlines arrives in style in Pensacola

Southwest Airlines arrives in style in Pensacola

Southwest Airlines held a party in grand “Southwest” style Monday morning to celebrate its inaugural flight into Pensacola International Airport. When the first flight from Nashville landed, the plane was given a water cannon salute by the airport’s fire department on the tarmac. The festivities continued at the gate when passengers were greeted with music, […]