Lessons Learned from the Great Recession

The Great Recession of 2008 taught Collier County a lesson that still resonates today. The taxable value of property fell nearly $25 billion and Collier County didn’t start the recovery of property values until 2013. It took five long years to restore our fiscal condition.

Collier is a beautiful and safe community with great schools and wonderful amenities most of which are supported by the residential tax base. The important lesson we learned from 2008 -2013 is that if we are to grow and maintain our quality of life, we need to reduce the risk of relying on a single source of revenue and diversify our tax base. I am a fiscal and economic conservative committed to attracting great companies. Vibrant businesses insulate us from recessions and enable lower property taxes.

Sports Tourism Emerges as a Winner

And 2008 shed light on another challenge for Collier County. The county’s main industry is tourism but the Great Recession taught us that leisure tourism is not recession-proof. What other areas of tourism could Collier develop that would weather the inevitable ups-and-downs of the economy providing more financial stability for businesses that serve tourism?

I led the process to develop another ‘leg’ of the three-legged tourism stool consisting of leisure, the arts, and now, sports tourism. The development of the Paradise Coast Sports Complex created a nationally recognized home for youth sports tourism, attracting families from across the nation. The FBU youth football tournament, comprised of players throughout the U.S., bills its national championship game, “the Path to Naples.”

The importance of youth sports as an economic driver is just being recognized nationally and Collier County is on the cutting edge of this exciting new area of tourism. Great Wolf Lodge, an indoor water resort and accommodations facility, operates in select markets across the country. They chose Collier County for their latest expansion given the economic boost of the Paradise Coast Sports Complex.

Attracting Clean Industries of the Future

Collier is diversifying our economy with some initiatives directed by the Board of Commissioners and others due to company leaders recognizing the importance of our quality of life in their location decisions. We are proud that Arthrex, a global leader in medical device development and education in orthopedics, developed in Collier County through the years and today has made Naples its global headquarters. Parker-Hannifin, a global leader in their industry of motion and control technologies, operates a manufacturing facility in Collier.

Uline, a leading distributor of shipping, industrial and packaging materials to businesses throughout North America has begun construction and an Amazon distribution facility has just located in Collier.

Collier County has attracted and will continue to attract clean industry of the future. I am committed to maintain our quality of life and our current property tax rate while developing diverse sources of revenue for our government to serve you, the taxpayer and resident of Collier County. The future looks bright, but there is hard work ahead to keep the necessary balance to preserve your investment in our County. I look forward to these challenges.

Political advertisement paid for and approved by Penny Taylor (R) for Collier County Commission. District 4.
Copyright © 2022 Penny Taylor for Collier County Commissioner District 4