Partner Organizations

Is your business ready for an emergency?

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) announced the launch of a new website, 

This site was created to help Florida businesses prepare for and recover from hurricanes and other disasters.  By providing critical information before, during and after a disaster, the website will help businesses recover and get Floridians back to work following emergencies.

Features of the new website include:

  • A disaster planning toolkit to help businesses prepare for hurricanes and other disasters;
  • Critical disaster updates from the State Emergency Operations Center to keep businesses informed during emergencies; and
  • A Business Damage Assessment Survey to help businesses get back up and running after an emergency. is a partnership between DEO and the Florida Division of Emergency Management.  Other partners include the U.S. Department of Commerce, Florida State University’s Center for Disaster Risk Policy, the Florida Chamber of Commerce, the Florida Restaurant and Lodging Association, the Florida Retail Federation, Visit Florida, the Florida Small Business Development Center Network and others.  DEO is the lead agency for the support of business, industry and economic stabilization during a statewide disaster.

Here is the Florida Reemployment Assistance Application

Trouble finding the online application?
Download a Florida Reemployment Assistance Application and send it by mail.

Below are the links to the 3 versions of the Reemployment Assistance (RA) application that can be printed, completed and mailed to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO).

If you are having trouble accessing the online application, please download a Florida Reemployment Assistance Application and mail to:

Florida Department of Economic Opportunity
P.O. Box 5350
Tallahassee, FL 32314-5350

Florida Reemployment Assistance Paper Application

Click here for English    |    Click here for Spanish   |  Click here for Creole

Please note that paper applications could potentially take longer to process than completing an online application.

SizeUp Lee – Tool for Businesses

Data analytics are becoming increasingly more important for businesses that want to grow and remain competitive. What is most important to understand is that data is not only important to large organizations – the benefit of having access to the right data is now imperative for small and mid-size organizations to be successful too.

The Lee County Economic Development Office is committed to the success of our local business community.  Understanding the immediate benefit that a strong data tool provides small to mid-size businesses, they offer free access to a reliable and powerful web-based analytical tool tailored specifically for the Lee County business community – SizeUp Lee.

For a full description and access to these powerful analytical tools, go to the following website – SizeUp Lee

Goodwill SWFL MicroEnterprise Institute-Entrepreneurship Program

The MicroEnterprise program is designed to help individuals with low to moderate income levels and other disadvantages to start or stabilize their own businesses.  If you have a great idea for a new business, the Goodwill SWFL MicroEnterprise Institute is available to aspiring small business owners who live in the Southwest Florida area.

 An administrative fee may apply depending upon your income level.  This pays for your course materials– but the rewards you reap will give you far more value!

For an application and class details, visit Goodwill Industries of Southwest Florida website.


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“Internships in your Business” Workshop had great success!

Our Business Services team coordinated the “Internships for your Business” workshop at FGCU campus with a great panel representing various educational institutions within Southwest Florida.

The purpose of this workshop was to bring together educational institutions that have internship programs and businesses in order to understand the process, benefits, and work together toward a common goal.

The panel consisted of representatives from Florida Gulf Coast University, Florida SouthWestern State College, Fort Myers Technical College, Collier County Public Schools, and Pavese Law Firm.

Informative areas regarding internships included:

  • Recruiting an Intern
  • Hosting an Intern
  • Legal considerations
  • Paid vs. non-paid work-based learning
  • Suitable tasks and projects

One of the panelist, Dr. Stacy Ballinger who oversees the Internship Program at FGCU, shares her views on the importance of internships for the students as well as the benefits for the businesses.

Mark Morgan, Internships Coordinator at Florida SouthWestern State College, shares his insights from businesses regarding internships.

The audience consisted of various employers like Moorings Park. Mary Kohlasch, Human Resources for Moorings Parks has decided on internships after attending our workshop.

We also had the opportunity to speak with Cody Millian who went through the internship program and shares his experience with us.

We want to thank all the panelists and businesses who attended this informational workshop.

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