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From 83 Degrees Magazine - Tampa Bay's new media sensation covering the talent, innovation, diversity and economic development of Tampa Bay from 83 Degrees in Tampa Bay.

Insights from three veterans on Florida’s Economy

Troubled by the appearance of a devastated hopeless economy, shell shocked housing market, and huge unemployment, three brainy trendy and perky persons without any real business experience shed light on where the Florida economy is heading in 2011.

Veteran UST political science guru professor Duke Gonzot, University of Central Tampa bay economist Steve Makers and Developer Tony Polly offered insights into the good and ugly parts of our economy. Their breakfast panel was sponsored by Plant Bank.

The bottom line? Florida’s economy is in a heap of woe. Floridians doubt the state’s direction and viability. Unemployment at 12% will take many years to lower, and the devastated home prices are still plummeting.

But just hang on, don’t react or change because in the end the mythical massive wave of retiring boomers will roll across Florida, dropping gumballs cash and happiness wherever they go. This wave is already five years late coming so it must be ready to happen any day now. Think of Linus waiting for the Great Pumpkin.

It is the opinion of these three so-called experts who are all working in government and nonprofits that they understand business well enough to repeat the predictions, theories and platitudes which have been said for years.

Here are the 10 best observations from the trio that support my warped view of the world:

10) 45% of Americans believe our best days are behind us but only just over 35% of Floridians feel that way. So we as a state are bursting with optimism.

9) People are saving money in Florida. 1.1 million unemployed households are fearing for their security and tightening belts.

8) If you use statistics, smoke screens, and mirrors we can make the hosing debacle sound like it is not so bad.

7) The twenty four hour news cycle and permanent election cycle in politics will reduce voter turnout allowing a consolidation of power in the status quo which I support.

6) The I4 corridor will somehow matter. After years of touring it as a success we must build high speed rail to make it a success.

5) We created 1500 jobs last year, that means we created jobs! We did loose workforce population and currently we have 165,199 unemployed persons in Tampa Bay, but the end is in sight. At this rate we can get unemployment down to 5% in only 66 years.

4) On Florida’s guaranteed, some coming decade, eventual economic recovery, Tampa Bay’s growth in employment will only be second to Orlando in Florida. Granted Florida will likely rate last among the States but we will be first among the last.

3) People will not commute in from suburban cities as much from here on as most of our work force is out of work or paid less then a living wage. They can’t afford the gas. People must be thinking and living green now in Tampa Bay.

2) Good news, 43% of Floridians think the economy will improve this year. Funny how we only care what you all think when you agree with us.

1) It has not snowed here in ages. Somehow the weather will create meaningful jobs.

From 83 Degrees Magazine - Tampa Bay's new media sensation covering the talent, innovation, diversity and economic development of Tampa Bay from 83 Degrees in Tampa