Directs FDOT to amend work plan to include $77 million for the port

March 4, 2011; Miami – Standing before a crowd of hundreds at the Port of Miami today, Governor Rick Scott announced plans to fully fund the $77 million shortfall for the port dredging project so that larger ships can enter the port.

“Today I directed the Florida Department of Transportation to amend their work plan to include $77 million so that Florida can take another leap forward in international trade,” Scott said. “This is the type of infrastructure project that will pay permanent, long-term dividends, and provide a solid return on investment for Florida’s taxpayers.”

Flanked by Senator Marco Rubio, Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart, Congressman David Rivera, and Colombian Ambassador Gabriel Silva, the Governor unveiled his intention to invest in the types of infrastructure projects that have long-term, permanent payoffs. The Port of Miami dredge project is projected to result in 30,000 new jobs for the region in the coming years.

Once the port is dredged to a depth of 50 feet, larger, “New Panamax” ships can load and unload cargo there, enabling the Port of Miami to become a “first port of call” for ships coming through the expanded Panama Canal in 2014.

“This is a solid first step toward enhancing Florida’s infrastructure and getting our state ready for a new generation of international trade with South America and beyond,” said Governor Scott. There are a number of worthy infrastructure projects that deserve our attention, and as Floridians, we know best where our resources should be focused.”

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