TALLAHASSEE – Gov. Rick Scott and the Florida Cabinet approved the sale Tuesday of the former G. Pierce Wood Mental Health Facility near Arcadia in DeSoto County.
The Power Auto Corp. purchased the property with plans to construct a manufacturing facility, driver training center, tactical training center and a hotel. The proposed facility will bring between 80 and 120 jobs to the area during the first year, and up to 360 within five years.
“Hundreds of Floridians will be able to find a job and provide for their families because of Power Auto Corporation’s relocation to DeSoto County," Scott said. "Thanks to our improving economy, more companies are choosing to build their businesses in our state, and I look forward to seeing the great opportunities they will bring to Florida.”
The property is approximately 496 acres of surplus, non-conservation land, which includes 565,000 square feet of building space. DJJ took full responsibility of the property, and requested the property be surplused in July 2012. Power Auto Corp. submitted a qualifying bid of $2.5 million to the Florida Department of Environmental Protection's Division of State Lands in November.
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“I’m excited about this disposition,” said Kelley Boree, director of DEP’s Division of State Lands. "It is always pleasing to see corporate opportunities coming into the state and Power Auto Corporation has a multi-use development plan that is expected to offer top performance rally-car driver training and manufacturing facilities. Their new facility will offer tremendous economic benefits to DeSoto County in the future.”
DEP is in the process of selling many state-owned, surplus, non-conservation lands to increase the budget for future purchases of environmentally sensitive conservation lands.