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New study finds Flagler College has $146 million impact on Northeast Florida economy

May 18, 2018

An economic impact study done for Flagler College finds that the college, its students and visitors added $146.3 million in income to the economy of Northeast Florida in 2016-17.

The $146.3 million was equal to approximately 0.2% of the Gross Regional Product (GRP) of Northeast Florida, and supports 2,653 jobs.

The study was completed by Emsi, a leading provider of economic impact studies and labor market data to educational institutions, workforce planners and regional developers. Emsi found that Flagler “creates a significant positive impact on the business community and generates significant benefits for students, taxpayers, and society.” Using a two-pronged approach that involves an economic impact analysis and a benefits analysis, the study calculated the benefits received by each of these groups.

The study concluded the college benefits local businesses by increasing consumer spending in the region and supplying a steady flow of qualified, trained workers into the workforce. Other benefits included: Enriching the lives of students by raising their lifetime earnings and helping them achieve their individual potential, as well as benefitting state taxpayers through increased tax receipts across the state and a reduced demand for government-supported social services.

Key findings of the study include:

  • Flagler College employed 538 full-time and part-time employees, and had a payroll that amounted to $28.2 million, much of which was spent in Northeast Florida to purchase groceries, clothing, and other household goods and services. The college spent another $27.3 million to support its day-to-day operations.
  • The net impact of Flagler College’s construction spending in 2016-17 was $10.4 million in added income for Northeast Florida.
  • The expenditures of students during the analysis year added approximately $19.5 million in income to the Northeast Florida economy through money spent on groceries, transportation, rent, and other expenditures at regional businesses.
  • Out-of-region visitors attracted to Northeast Florida for activities at Flagler brought approximately $5.4 million in income through their spending at hotels, restaurants, gas stations, and other regional businesses.
  • Flagler alumni have entered the Northeast Florida workforce and the accumulated contribution of former students employed in the regional workforce amounted to $68.6 million in added income during the analysis year.
  • Even with very little state taxpayer support, Flagler still creates a significant amount of benefits for taxpayers. The net present value of the added tax revenue stemming from the students’ higher lifetime earnings and the increased output of businesses amounts to $61 million in benefits to taxpayers. Savings to the public sector add another $20.9 million in benefits due to a reduced demand for government-funded services in Florida. This amounts to $81.9 million in benefits to Florida taxpayers.
  • For every $1 that society spent on Flagler College educations during the analysis year, society will receive a cumulative value of $9.40 in benefits, for as long as the student population at Flagler College remains active in the state workforce.

The report was based on academic and financial reports from Flagler, industry and employment data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and U.S. Census Bureau, models developed by Emsi and a variety of studies and surveys relating education to social behavior. The study applies a conserva¬tive methodology and follows standard practice using only the most recognized indicators of investment effectiveness and economic impact.

For more information on the Flagler impact, please visit here.

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