TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced $24 million in funding awarded to 36 small and rural Florida communities across the state through the Florida Small Cities Community Development Block Grant and the Rural Infrastructure Fund programs. These programs, administered by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), help communities fund economic activities, infrastructure improvements and housing rehabilitation. 

Since December 2010, every county in Florida has experienced a drop in its unemployment rate. During the same time, Florida has created nearly 1.7 million private-sector jobs. 

Governor Scott said, “Florida is the greatest melting pot and it is vital that we support our rural and small communities to preserve our state’s unique identity. Providing small and rural communities the opportunity to make investments in infrastructure and housing programs is key to growing our economy.” 

Cissy Proctor, Executive Director of DEO, said, “Supporting the economic development of Florida’s small and rural communities is vital to the continued growth of our diverse economy. I am proud of the work we are doing to make these important economic investments that are paving the way for a bright future for many Florida families.” 

Thirty-five small and rural communities will receive more than $23 million in funding through the Florida Small Cities Community Development Block Grant program. This program is a partnership between the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and DEO to help communities fund economic activities, infrastructure improvements and housing rehabilitation. The 35 communities include: 

•Altha 

•Apalachicola 

•Avon Park 

•Baldwin 

•Bristol 

•Chipley 

•Clermont 

•DeSoto County 

Esto 

•Flagler County 

•Florida City 

•Gilchrist County 

•Grand Ridge 

•Greenville 

•Hamilton County 

•Hampton 

•Hardee County 

•Havana 

•Hawthorne 

•High Springs 

•Indian River County 

•Interlachen 

•Jay 

•Jefferson County 

•Newberry 

•Palatka 

•Paxton 

•Penney Farms 

•Quincy 

•Sebring 

•Trenton 

•Wausau 

•White Springs 

•Williston 

•Zolfo Springs 

 

Additionally, more than $300,000 was awarded to the City of Arcadia through the Rural Infrastructure Grant Fund for waterline improvements and to complete site development at the Arcadia Municipal Airport. These developments are expected to create 15 new full-time jobs, retain 12 full-time jobs and promote new private-sector growth and expansion in aviation for the City of Arcadia. The Rural Infrastructure Grant Fund, administered by DEO, provides funding to local governments for infrastructure projects in rural communities to encourage job creation, business investment, and strengthening and diversification of rural economies. 

For more information on the Community Development Block Grant Program, visit FloridaJobs.org/SmallCitiesCDBG. 

For more details on the Rural Infrastructure Fund, visit FloridaJobs.org/RIF. 

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