Report Jan 19, 2020

Sarasota Sister Cities is engaged in a variety of Sustainable Economic Development efforts to improve Sarasota and our Sister Cities. One of those efforts is to try to improve trade and tourism transportation links between Sarasota and our Sister City of Merida, Mexico.

Over the past 45 days we have met with Merida officials and Economic Development professionals from Sarasota. We are working on improving economic development for our two cities by improving air and sea service, and examining the possible development of a tour to the Merida and the Yucatan Peninsula. Our thought is that we may be able to develop a tour aimed at the Sister Cities of Yucatan and the world.




Mike Fehily, City Director of Merida, and Phillip Gordon, City Director of Busseto and retired CEO of the North American Division of Globus have contributed substantially to our efforts. And Steve Stancel and Susan Dodd of the Sarasota Redevelopment Office have been working with us.


We are also looking into getting better cruise ship service to Merida. Cruises visit Merida from Miami and Galveston, but not Miami. But the ships only stop for one day in Merida. We will investigate to see if the companies would let passengers visit Merida on one cruise, get off and spend some time in Yucatan, and then come back to the US on the next ship.

More info at:  sarasotameridaeconomicdevelopment.blogspot.com 

Economic Development Information:  Sarasotasistercities.com


Background


Merida is on the Yucatan Peninsula with the amazing Mayan pyramids and temples, the sun vacations cities of Cancun and Cozumel, and the colonial architecture and charm of Merida. It is a charming lovely safe country just across the Gulf of Mexico.




Despite its proximity, however, it is not easy to get to from Sarasota. You can fly from SRQ to Merida but it is a long trip with intervening stops. You can also drive to Miami and then fly to Merida, or fly to Cozumel from Tampa and drive five hours to Merida. Further on in this blog are maps of connecting flights.


It would improve tourism and economic development for both regions if we had better air and sea service. Our committee will research possibilities of improvements.

As the map illustrates Yucatan has a wealth of interesting places to visit. The pyramids and temples of the Maya, the sun resorts of Cancun and Cozumel, and the colonial architecture and charm of Merida are fascinating.

Report November 15, 2019


Economic Development Report
Sarasota Sister Cities
November 15, 2019

Reports: economicdevelopmentreports.blogspot.com
Economic Development Information: Sarasotasistercities.com


We conducted our Economic Development Presentation on November 7, 2019 at the Selby Library. The City, County, and Sylva Kanderal made excellent presentations.

The purpose of the presentations was to inform our Members about Economic Development in the City and County of Sarasota and how to make a business investment to secure a Visa Green Card. The presentations can be found on our Economic Development blog at sarasotasistercities.com. The presenters were:

Presenters

Destin Wells 
VP of Business Development Services
Sarasota County

Steve Stancel 
GM Economic Development 
City of Sarasota 

Sylva Kanderal and Craig Hullinger 
Investments to secure a Visa Green Card EB-5

Moderator
Craig Hullinger
VP Economic Development
Sarasota Sister Cities

_____________________ 

We will work with Mike Fehily to try to find a carrier who would link our metro area to Merida. Our metro area including the Tampa Bay region has almost 4,000,000 people, while the State of Yucatan including Merida and Cancun has almost 2,000,000. A sea or air link would increase trade and tourism among the two regions. This is a long shot, but we will give it a try. 

Connections Merida and Sarasota
Sarasota has an established relationship with Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, directly across the Gulf of Mexico. The two cities have conducted numerous exchanges and desire to increase travel and economic links among the regions.

At present there is no direct air or sea connection between the two regions. A connecting flight to Houston or Miami is required and there is no sea connection.
A direct connection between Yucatan and the Sarasota / Manatee / Tampa / Clearwater metro area could be very successful. Yucatan including Merida and Cancun have over 2 million people. Tampa / Clearwater / Sarasota / Manatee metros have nearly 4 million people.

Population____Metro Area_

__
2,097,000____Yucatan including Merida


3,142,663___  Tampa Clearwater Metro
   821,473___  Sarasota Manatee Metro

3,964,136___  Sarasota / Manatee / Tampa / Clearwater 

Yucatán, the Mexican state, is known for its Gulf of Mexico beaches and Mayan ruins. Famed Chichén Itzá encompasses a massive pyramid, ball court and stone temples. Other Mayan sites include Ek Balam, noted for well preserved sculptures, and Uxmal, with its intricate carved facades. Yucatán’s capital and largest city, Mérida, has a Spanish colonial history reflected in buildings such as 16th-century Mérida Cathedral.

Population: 2.097 million (2015)

GDP: US$ 9,191,180.625

Sarasota metropolitan area is a metropolitan area located in Southwest Florida. The metropolitan area is defined by the Office of Management and Budget as the North Port–Sarasota–Bradenton metropolitan statistical area as a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) consisting of Manatee County and Sarasota County.[1] The largest cities in the MSA are North Port and Sarasota (both in Sarasota County) and Bradenton (in Manatee County). At the 2010 Census, the MSA had a population of 702,281. The Census Bureau estimates that its population was 821,573 in 2018.

Tampa–St. Petersburg–Clearwater Metropolitan Statistical AreaEdit

The population of the Tampa Bay MSA is estimated at 3,142,663 people as of 2018.

Action Plan



Sarasota Sister Cities Economic Development will contact air and sea providers in an effort to find a carrier who would establish service.


More info contact:   

Craig Hullinger  sarasotasistercities@gmail.com  309 634 5557


Economic Development Presentation Nov 7, 2019

Economic Development Presentation
Nov 7, 2019 4:00 pm
Selby Library at 5 Points
followed by a Meet and Greet

Sarasota Sister Cities will conduct a panel presentation on Economic
Development in Sarasota.  The presentation will be on November 7, 2019
at the Selby Library at 5 Points in Downtown Sarasota 4:00 pm followed
by a Meet and Greet at a location nearby.


Discussion Goal


Inform our Members about Economic Development in the City and County of
Sarasota and how to make a business investment to secure a Visa Green Card.


Presenters


Destin Wells 
VP of Business Development Services
Sarasota County


Steve Stancel 
GM Economic Development 
City of Sarasota 


Sylva Kanderal and Craig Hullinger 
Investments to secure a Visa Green Card EB-5


Moderator
Craig Hullinger
VP Economic Development
Sarasota Sister Cities

More info contact: 
Craig Hullinger sarasotasistercities@gmail.com  309 634 5557




Economic Development Report October 18, 2019

We have planned our Economic Development Presentation for November 7, 2019 at the Selby Library in Downtown Sarasota 4:00 pm followed by a Meet and Greet at a location nearby. We will Inform our Members about Economic Development in the City and County of Sarasota, as well as the EB-5 program which provides Visa Green Cards for people who make significant business investments.

We have speakers from the Economic Development Departments of the City and County of Sarasota. Sylva Kanderal and I will explain the EB-5 Program. More info below.

We have written a first draft of a proposal calling for improved air and sea travel between Sarasota and Merida. Details below:

We reworked the Economic Development blog, eliminating most of the historic photographs and posts per the direction of our President. The site is:




Which forwards to:

https://sarasotasistercities.blogspot.com/

Both addresses work.

We are working with Sister City Communication team to integrate Economic Development information with the Web site. We submitted two alternative drafts of the proposed Economic Development page for the new Web Site.

Sea and Land Connections Merida and Sarasota


Sarasota has an established relationship with Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, directly across the Gulf of Mexico. The two cities have conducted numerous exchanges and desire to increase travel and economic links among the regions.



At present there is no direct air or sea connection between the two regions. A connecting flight to Houston or Miami is required and there is no sea connection.


A direct connection between Yucatan and the Sarasota / Manatee / Tampa / Clearwater metro area could be very successful. Yucatan including Merida and Cancun have over 2 million people. Tampa / Clearwater / Sarasota / Manatee metros have nearly 4 million people.

Population
____Metro Area_

__
2,097,000____Yucatan including Merida


3,142,663___  Tampa Clearwater Metro 
   821,473___  Sarasota Manatee Metro 

3,964,136
___  
Sarasota / Manatee / Tampa / Clearwater 

Yucatán, the Mexican state, is known for its Gulf of Mexico beaches and Mayan ruins. Famed Chichén Itzá encompasses a massive pyramid, ball court and stone temples. Other Mayan sites include Ek Balam, noted for well preserved sculptures, and Uxmal, with its intricate carved facades. Yucatán’s capital and largest city, Mérida, has a Spanish colonial history reflected in buildings such as 16th-century Mérida Cathedral.

Population: 2.097 million (2015)

GDP: US$ 9,191,180.625 th

Sarasota metropolitan area is a metropolitan area located in Southwest Florida. The metropolitan area is defined by the Office of Management and Budget as the North Port–Sarasota–Bradenton metropolitan statistical area as a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) consisting of Manatee County and Sarasota County.[1] The largest cities in the MSA are North Port and Sarasota (both in Sarasota County) and Bradenton (in Manatee County). At the 2010 Census, the MSA had a population of 702,281. The Census Bureau estimates that its population was 821,573 in 2018.

Tampa–St. Petersburg–Clearwater Metropolitan Statistical Area



The population of the Tampa Bay MSA is estimated at 3,142,663 people as of 2018.
_____________________

Action Plan

Sarasota Sister Cities Economic Development will contact air and sea providers in an effort to find a carrier who would establish service.





Economic Development Report Sep 20, 2019

We have planned our Economic Development Presentation for November 7, 2019 at the Selby Library at 5 Points in Downtown Sarasota 4:00 pm followed by a Meet and Greet at a location nearby. We will Inform our Members about Economic Development in the City and County of Sarasota, as well as the EB-5 program which provides Visa Green Cards for people who make significant business investments. 

We have speakers from the Economic Development Departments of the City and County of Sarasota. Sylva Kanderal and I will explain the EB-5 Program. More info at: 
https://economicdevelopmentreports.blogspot.com/


We reworked the Economic Development blog, eliminating most of the historic photographs and posts per the direction of our President.  The site is:

www.sarasotasistercities.com

Which forwards to: 

https://sarasotasistercities.blogspot.com/


Both addresses work.

We are working with Sister City Communication team to integrate Economic Development information with the Web site. We submitted two alternative drafts of the proposed Economic Development page for the new Web Site.

We visited the City of Perpignan and discussed potential Economic Development efforts. Photos of the visit are posted on our Perpignan site.  
http://perpignansarasota.blogspot.com/

We visited with representatives of the regional Economic Development group. 

https://ec.europa.eu/growth/tools-databases/regional-innovation-monitor/base-profile/languedoc-roussillon




More info at sarasotasistercities.com  and

https://economicdevelopmentreports.blogspot.com/


We contacted the French American Business Council. Thanks to Gloria Grenier for providing the contact.

http://framco.org/


We refined our Printable Brochure


Economic Development Seminar Nov 7, 2019

We met with County and City Economic development officials
and told them about interest in helping them with Economic 
development efforts and gained their support for our proposed 
Seminar:

Sarasota Sister Cities is planning a panel discussion on Economic Development in Sarasota.  We plan to do the presentation on November 7, 2019 at the Selby Library at 4:00 pm.

Discussion Goal

Inform our Members about Economic Development in the City and County of Sarasota, with an emphasis on possible foreign investment in our Opportunity Zones. Many of our members and members of our affiliated organizations have individuals who would like to have a green card and have the resources available to make investments.

Panel Discussion

We would ask each of you to present what your organization does in Economic Development. Each of you would have about ten to fifteen minutes. Craig Hullinger will moderate the presentation. Destin, you would start, providing the big picture about Economic Development. Steven we would like some emphasis on Opportunity Zones. Sylva Kanderal and Craig Hullinger will discuss the EB-5 process, with an emphasis on investments in our opportunity zones.

Presenters

Destin Wells VP of Business Development Services, Sarasota County

www.edcsarasotacounty.com


Steve Stancel GM Economic Development, City of Sarasota 
https://www.sarasotafl.gov/government/city-manager/office-of-economic-development



Sylva Kanderal, Events Coordinator of Sarasota Sister Cities and Craig Hullinger will present the EB-5 process, with an emphasis on Opportunity Zones in Sarasota
Sylva Kanderal <Sylva_Events@sarasotasistercities.com>


______________________


Hi Craig,

Thank you for reaching out. We would be glad to participate. Destin Wells is our VP of Business Development Services and would be better suited for the panel. I have cc’ed him here and marked it on his calendar.

Also, I would like to introduce you two beforehand. I enjoyed our conversation and think it would be great to get the three of us together. Destin is traveling next week but if you give me some dates/times around the second week of June we could definitely make it work.

Have a great weekend,
Erin Silk
Director, Business Development Services
Economic Development Corporation of Sarasota County
1680 Fruitville Road, Suite 402
SarasotaFL 34236
(t) 941.309.1200 ext. 105 (f) 941.309-1209www.edcsarasotacounty.com

____________________________

Hi Craig,

Yes, I can make the presentation on November 7th.

Best Regards,

Steven Stancel




Stancel, Steven


____________________________



Craig Hullinger
Vice President Economic Development
309 634 5557

Web        sarasotasistercities.org 


Blog        sarasotasistercities.com