Economic Development

New Growth-Focus for Development 2020’s goal is to speed job creation with a new growth-focused, community centered approach to economic development in South St. Petersburg 2020 objectives are to ink 10 community benefits agreements (CBAs) with developers/prime contractors that will target an estimated $75 million in construction contracts to community firms; and to support 40 developers, employers and social enterprises to create jobs.

Partners’ Impact since 2014
2 CBAs forged
$7.2 million in construction contracts targeted CBAs slow-going the 2020 team has achieved marginal success in cultivating CBAs, including the following.

Commerce Park: 2020 secured a win for the community when the City adopted recommendations by Rev. Louis Murphy and the 2020 team for new terms tied to development of the 14-acre Commerce Park site. The City estimates that new projects will create 64 jobs and build 75,000 sq. ft. of space, and target 30% of construction contract opportunities to small firms, and 51% of jobs to low income workers. This equates to as much as $4.5 million in contract opportunities plus new job income.

The Skate Park: 2020 supported Coy LaSister in asking the City and selected contractor to increase work with community firms during design and construction of the new Campbell Park skate park. The team succeeded in securing an increased goal, from 5% to 8.25% for community firms.

2020 Course Corrections: With the hope of being more effective in the years ahead, the 2020 team made several course corrections and changes in 2017. New directions this year include the following.

New Opportunity Taskforce: In 2017, the 2020 team helped spearhead creation of the Opportunity Taskforce (Co-chaired by Watson Haynes and Brother John Muhammad) to converge the efforts of a dozen organizations involved in community economic growth. The new Taskforce has agreed to collectively back a request of the City to forge a universal community benefits agreement policy that asks and inspires all developers of city supported projects to target contract opportunities to community firms.

Comprehensive Community Economic Development & Growth Plan: The
2020 team is backing an effort by the Collective Empowerment Group of Tampa Bay (CEGTBA) to create a 10-year community economic development & growth plan that will harness the energy and contributions of diverse organizations into a coordinated approach for economic growth in South St. Pete. Founders of CEGTBA, which launched in 2015, have decades of experience in the fields of redevelopment, affordable housing development and home ownership, small business development, and development planning.

2020 supports job creation projects: Since 2014, the 2020 team has supported four developers and 16 social enterprises with small investments of funding and capacity building volunteerism to support job creation in the community.

The 2020 team is working to transform the way we think about and work toward poverty reduction. A key objective is to expand understanding that economic and workforce development must be at the forefront of efforts to reduce poverty and, in turn, poverty reduction must happen to create an inclusive and thriving city economy.

2020 recognized by City officials:
In addition to year-round work toward the goal of poverty reduction, Mayor Rick Kriseman, Deputy Mayor Dr. Kanika Tomalin and Urban Affairs Director Nikki Gaskin-Capehart (pictured above) recognized 2020’s early successes at three public occasions, including the State of the City 2016 address.


Pictured above, and integrally involved with 2020 projects: the Mayor’s Small Business Liaison Jessica Eilerman; Director of Education & Community Engagement Leah McRae; St. Petersburg Police Community Intervention Director Rev. Kenny Irby; and Police Chief Anthony Holloway.

National Bon Secours Network Meeting 2020: was invited to introduce the design of the 2020 Plan to national and local board members from Bon Secours Health System affiliates across eight states in Charleston, South Carolina this February. The convening spotlighted the life-changing impact of Bon Secours’ investments in St. Petersburg through its investments with the Pinellas Opportunity Council’s expert program team.

South Florida Synergy Symposium 2016: The 2020 Plan was presented to an audience of 120+, South Florida service providers and funders at Synergy Symposium 2016 last October in Miami by 2020 partners. Nikki Gaskin Capehart, Albert Lee, and Gypsy Gallardo shared insights on how collectivism is speeding results for South St. Petersburg. Since then, Miami-Dade County’s Equity & Advocacy Collective has forged a plan to replicate 2020 across three County districts.

Chamber creates 2020 board position: The St. Petersburg Area Chamber Board of Directors has identified “Diversity and Inclusion” as a foundation block of a healthy and vibrant city economy, and toward that end, recently created an ex-officio position on the board so that the 2020 Plan vision is represented and integrated in economic and workforce development initiatives supported by the Chamber. Occupying the board seat is Cory Adler, Executive Director of the 2020 Plan Taskforce.

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