Walton workforce training on agenda

EIGHT COUNTIES considered to have been disproportionately impacted by the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, including Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa, Walton, Bay, Gulf, Franklin and Wakulla counties, receive funding by approval of Triumph Gulf Coast for projects within their counties to assist with economic recovery.

Triumph Gulf Coast to meet in Freeport on Aug 16

By DOTTY NIST

The board of Triumph Gulf Coast, the nonprofit corporation administering distribution of hundreds of millions of dollars of funds resulting from the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, is scheduled to meet in Freeport on Aug. 16.

Funds administered by Triumph Gulf Coast are aimed at assisting with the economic recovery in eight counties that were disproportionately impacted by the oil spill. These include Bay, Escambia, Franklin, Gulf, Okaloosa, Santa Rosa, Walton, and Wakulla counties.

The board of Triumph Gulf Coast is set up as a seven-member board, with appointments of members made by state officials, including the governor, attorney general, chief financial officer, Senate president, and speaker of the House.

Current board members include Chairman Don Gaetz of Seaside, Lewis Bear, Jr. of Gulf Breeze, Allan Bense of Panama City, Pam Dana of Destin, Ben Lee of Lynn Haven, and Stephen Riggs IV, of Destin. One board seat is currently vacant.

To be considered for approval at the Aug. 16 meeting will be a $2,763,716 grant agreement with Northwest Florida State College (NWFSC) that would provide partial funding for workforce training programs in Walton County. According to a summary of the agreement, the training would be conducted at an industrial trade building to be constructed at NWFSC’s Chautauqua Center and at a fire tower to be constructed by the Walton County Sheriff’s Office, both locations in DeFuniak Springs, with a $1.6 million portion of the grant funds to provide for construction of these facilities.

The meeting is scheduled to begin at 10:30 a.m. on Aug. 16. The meeting location is the Walton County Commission Chambers at Freeport Business Park (also known as Freeport Commons), 842 SR-20 East, Unit 118 in Freeport.

Information on the meeting is available by calling (850) 387-9405. Plans are for the meeting agenda to be posted in advance of the meeting at www.myfloridatriumph.com. Triumph Gulf Coast board meetings are open to public attendance and input.