Bay County, Florida

BAY COUNTY, FLORIDA for Bay County, local elected officials recently decided to crack down on some of the excesses spawned by the Spring Break crowds that migrate to the area between February and April. “This was, generally, not a place that you would want to be if you wanted a family-oriented vacation,” Majka opines. “So, the City of Panama City Beach and the county partnered to put some legislation in place. For example, during the month of March, there’s no alcohol consumption allowed on the sandy beach.”Although Majka admits that some Spring Break-oriented businesses suffered, “it was neces- sary to preserve that bigger brand, because reve- nue from tourism is still such a significant part of the economy, here.” In a continuing effort to promote the county’s most important priorities, Majka says that, last year, Bay County adopted its first unified strategic plan. “Prior to that, each department had individ- ual strategic plans, but I felt that it was import- ant to make sure that we had one overall plan that spoke to some enduring goals – the things that don’t change in the community over time,” he states. “One of the goals that we put in there, specifically, was to build and maintain a healthy business climate, and we are certainly on our way to doing that. But we also want to ensure a safe community; we want to make sure we’re deliv- ering services that the county residents want and are willing to support.We also have a goal of mak- ing sure we’re effective stewards of our significant natural resources.And we have a goal to maintain a family-friendly community where people want to come, find value, and afford to live.” “This is a great place to live, work, and play,” Ma- jka says, in conclusion. “So, whether you’re looking for a place to retire, or a place to recreate, or to relocate your business, or to come to work for someone that’s already here, Bay County is a great place to do that.” PREFERRED VENDOR n The St. Joe Company The St. Joe Company, a land development com- pany that was founded in 1936, is headquartered in Watersound, Florida. It is Florida’s second largest private landowner, owning approximately 567,000 acres in the state. The company operates through four segments: Residential Real Estate, Resorts and Leisure, Commercial Leasing and Sales, and For- estry. The Residential Real Estate segment plans and develops residential communities of various sizes, and primarily sells developed home sites and parcels of entitled undeveloped land.