Airline hailed as job creator by Rick Scott charged with theft
It was one of the first big job announcements of Gov. Rick Scott’s administration: Vision Airlines was bringing a hub to the Panhandle, promising 4,200 “direct and indirect” jobs to the region.
“This is going to be fun. This is our chance. We are going to win,” Scott said at a Jan. 18, 2011, event, promoting the economic benefits Vision Airlines would bring.
It didn’t quite work out that way.
The airline abandoned its flights to Fort Walton Beach in less than two years. It also, local officials say, abandoned its contractual obligations to the area.
In December, county commissioners sued the company for nearly $150,000 in unpaid airline fees.
And on Monday, State Attorney Bill Eddins charged Vision Airlines with grand theft, according to the Northwest Florida Daily News.