North Florida Youth Development Center Closes

By Alyssa Hyman
ts an institution that has been around for over one hundred years. But Thursday was the last day for the North
Florida Development Center. The boys have been relocated to other facilities. But the state employees are still
looking for their next move.

Richard Williams, executive Director of the Chipola Regional Workforce Board, says"I mean I'm not going to lie to
you, the employment situation is tough. And they've got a lot more competition in the job market than they would've
even just a few months ago."

The facility had 186 positions. As of Thursday, only fourteen of them have found full time employment. Ten have
found temporary jobs and six are retiring. That leaves 156 employees still looking for work.

"We've not seen anything like this in a while now. The magnitude is such that we don't know where we're going to
place them. We're sitting here looking today and I cant look them in the eyes and say I've got a job to put you in,"
says executive director Richard Williams.

The Chipola Regional Workforce is working with these individuals to help with resumes..interviewing skills, going
back to school ..and the job application process. But one of the greatest impacts the closure has is on the local

"There are two types of people in the world, tax payers and tax users. And all of these state employees were tax
payers who were contributing to our economy and our community. And if we lose one we're upset about it, but we're
losing hundreds because of the decisions coming out of absolutely devastating," says District 4
Commissioner Jeremy Branch.

the individuals who have lost their jobs are encouraged to online resources like employ Florida..and the resources
available at the one-stop center in Marianna.

To prepare for an increase in demand, the state is providing a Mobile One-Stop Center in Marianna on July 5th
and 6th.