500 million dollar production facility to be built in Lee County gets put on hold.
Photo: Video by fox4now.com
FORT MYERS, Fla.-
Southwest Florida is the site of a major technological breakthrough in developing renewable energy, the only problem, as bio-fuel company Algenol gets ready to expand and create hundreds of more jobs... it might be forced to take its expansion project out of the area.
Paul Woods is the owner of Algenol says Governor Rick Scott could cost Lee County one of the largest construction projects in the history of Lee County... and all the jobs go with it...
woods claims the governor and the state legislature is creating a hostile and over-regulated business environment.
Algenol is a high tech company in Florida that takes saltwater -- carbon dioxide -- and algae to create ethanol and fresh water. and now -- state lawmakers have recently created new laws which woods says make it too hard to do business here.
Woods said "I could build a plant capable of living 30 years. they could change the rules in one year and give me a 30 day notice and remove the entire thing."
Algenol was planning to construct a 500 million dollar ethanol production facility- right here in lee county - to build upon its previous success.
In 2010 --the economic development office gave the company ten million of your tax dollars to create sixty high paying jobs.
Alegenol doubled it.
If Lee County loses the expansion project it means losing hundreds of additional jobs, with salaries in the 90-thousand dollar range.
So why would state leaders risk losing a company like Algenol by passing more restrictive regulations?
Woods blames big oil companies which don't want to lose profits to companies like his.
Fox 4 news called state representatives Matt Caldwell and Heather Fitzenhagen.
Both said they didn't view the legislation as unfair but were willing to take another look at it.
Woods is still hopeful that legislators and the Governor will reach out to him since so much is at stake.
Scot's office was unavailable for comment but did post on their website that they are committed to creating a more business friendly environment.
Meanwhile, Algenol is looking at Texas to build it's first large scale production facility.