Rick Scott and Alvin Brown Team Up for Vistakon Expansion on the First Coast
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Gov. Rick Scott hit the First Coast Wednesday to announce Vistakon will expand in Jacksonville, creating 100 new jobs and bringing $218 million in capital to the region in the next three years. Scott, a Republican, was joined by Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, a Democrat, in making the announcement.
Scott was on the First Coast to continue his tour showcasing his proposal to cut $500 million in taxes and fees and to take part in a 9/11 remembrance ceremony in St. Johns. Vistakon, which is owned by Johnson & Johnson, has been a cornerstone of Jacksonville’s Southside for more than two and a half decades, employing around 1,800 residents of the First Coast. The company makes disposable contact lenses.
Scott’s team noted Vistakon will save almost $14 million through the elimination of the manufacturing sales tax as the company expands.
State entities like Enterprise Florida, Workforce Florida, the Department of Revenue and the Department of Economic Opportunity worked with the city of Jacksonville and JAXUSA to usher the expansion. The state granted Capital Investment Tax Credit incentives to Johnson & Johnson to boost the expansion.
“We are proud to work collaboratively with the state of Florida and all the stakeholders to bring quality jobs to Jacksonville,” said Brown. “My administration is focused on projects like Vistakon’s expansion to support targeted industries, make Jacksonville more competitive and keep our momentum for economic growth.”
“Johnson & Johnson is one of the most well-known companies worldwide and we could not be happier that they are again expanding again in Jacksonville,” said state Commerce Secretary Gray Swoope, the president and CEO of Enterprise Florida. “Florida ranks first in the nation in Manufacturing Export Intensity, the percentage of our total manufactured goods that are exported. Vistakon has been very effective in utilizing Florida’s top export position and we know they will continue their success with this expansion.”
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