Bill Johnson to receive $132K as part of severance package


The departing head of the state’s private-public economic development agency will receive more than $132,000 as part of his severance package.

The Enterprise Florida board of directors’ executive committee approved Bill Johnson’s severance package during its committee meeting Tuesday. Johnson will receive $132,500. His final day is June 24.

Alan Becker, the vice chair of the Enterprise Florida Board, said Johnson will not get “the bonus he would have been entitled to” had he stayed through June 30.

Gov. Rick Scott announced in March that Johnson was leaving the organization. In a statement at the time, Scott said Johnson “vigorously fought to bring new opportunities to the Sunshine State so we can grow our economy for future generations.”

Johnson was appointed head as the head of Enterprise Florida in March 2015. Before taking over at Enterprise Florida, Johnson spent 35 years with Miami-Dade County government. He served as the director of the Port of Miami; and spent time as the assistant county manager, where he oversaw the Miami International Airport.

Enterprise Florida has been under a microscope in recent years. A push to set aside $250 million to create the Enterprise Florida trust fund failed during the 2016 legislative session.

The executive committee meeting was one several committee meetings held Tuesday in the lead up to Wednesday’s board meeting. The organization’s finance and compensation committee, Team Florida marketing committee, and the Florida International Trade Partnership committee also held meetings.

During the finance and compensation committee, members briefly touched on an expected reorganization coming down the pike. Committee members said that should the reorganization lead to layoffs, separation packages would include two weeks of severance, plus payouts for years of service and sick time.

In March, Scott asked David Wilkins, the former head of the state’s Department of Children & Families, to investigate how the state could restructure the agency. That directive included asking Wilkins to look at converting the public-private agency to one totally funded by private dollars.

Wilkins is set to discuss his findings during the board of directors meeting on Wednesday. That meeting takes place at 8:30 a.m. at the Naples Beach Hotel & Golf Club in Naples; Wilkins presentation is expected to take place shortly after 9 a.m.

Jenna Buzzacco-Foerster


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