EUSTIS — Gov. Rick Scott signed the 2016-2017 Florida First budget on Friday, with $2.8 million allotted for the completion of the Lake County Center for Advanced Manufacturing (CAM) at Lake Technical College in Eustis.
“My goal every day and for every legislative session is to improve the opportunities for families like mine growing up who struggled to find a good paying job,” Gov. Rick Scott wrote in his budget transmittal letter.
Scheduled for completion in spring 2017, the CAM will provide future workforce training in the fields of computerized machining, welding and fabrication, and is set to be one of the premiere workforce training facilities in Central Florida.
“With nearly 7 percent of the county’s workforce in the manufacturing industry – double that of the state average - the CAM will provide a much-needed service for training additional skilled workers for our nearly 300 valued manufacturing businesses,” said Robert Chandler, Lake County Economic Growth Director. “The CAM will serve as a regional manufacturing incubator, enabling Lake County to support local businesses, and attract new manufacturing employers to the region.”
In partnership with Lake County, the CAM hosted a groundbreaking ceremony in October 2014, but required this additional funding from the state to continue construction. The total cost of the project is $4.6 million, with this budget approval completing the project funding. Previously, Lake County, Lake Technical College, Sen. Alan Hays and Rep. Larry Metz together secured $1.8 million for the CAM to renovate an 11,500 square-foot facility at the college, purchase equipment and set up a training program for the manufacturing workforce.
“The CAM is a game changer for the economic growth and development of Lake County and our region and we can’t wait to begin preparing the skilled manufacturing workforce!” said Dr. Diane Culpepper, Director of Lake Technical College.