County receives Defense Reinvestment and Infrastructure grants

Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast was awarded $225,270 through Florida’s Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grant Programs. The funding will support sustainability initiatives at Patrick Air Force Base, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and the Naval Ordnance Test Unit.


Governor Scott said, “These grants of $225,270 are critical to keeping our military families safe and secure, and we are proud to continue providing funding for these programs. Florida is the most military-friendly state in the nation and we will continue working to protect the military and defense jobs on the Space Coast, and the important work being done by our service men and women.”


For more than 15 years the defense grants have been successful tools in assisting local defense partners in supporting the State’s military installations. Florida’s military and defense sector is responsible for 9.4 percent – or $73.4 billion – of the Sunshine State’s economy. This translates to 758,112 statewide direct and indirect jobs.


Brevard County was one of twelve counties to receive a Defense Reinvestment Grant, which is designed to support relationships between military installations and their community. This $50,270 grant will help to protect Florida’s military installations, as well as promote economic diversification strategies in defense dependent communities.


The Defense Infrastructure Grant is awarded to local projects deemed to have a positive impact on the military value of the installation in addition to benefitting the community. Brevard County was awarded $175,000 for the purpose of improving base access.


Senator Andy Gardiner, (President-Designate) said, “I’m pleased to see Patrick Air Force Base, Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, and the Naval Ordnance Test Unit receive important resources. Like the Florida GI Bill, sponsored by Brevard County’s own Senator Thad Altman, Florida’s Defense Infrastructure and Reinvestment Grants demonstrate the Legislature’s continued commitment to Florida’s active duty servicemen and women, retirees, and their families.”


Senator Thad Altman said, “We are very fortunate to have more than 750,000 military personnel living in Florida, providing a $73 billion impact into our economy. Grants like this $175,000 Defense Infrastructure Grant for our Naval Ordnance Test Unit and a $50,270 Defense Reinvestment Grant to assist a number of other military assets will help maintain a high quality of life for our military families.”


Representative Steve Crisafulli, (Speaker-Designate) said, “The Governor and the Legislature recognize the strategic and economic importance of Patrick Air Force Base and Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Brevard County. I am grateful for the $225,270 that has been awarded to our county through two Florida Defense Grants programs that will be used to support these installations and our community.”


Representative Ritch Workman said, “The Governor and my colleagues in the Legislature should be commended for awarding these grants. This funding in Brevard County is critical to protecting our bases from possible sequestration and allows us to improve communications with the surrounding communities.”


Representative Tom Goodson said, “I am grateful to Governor Scott for awarding these defense grants here in Brevard County. These grants will support the local military installations with their projects such as the Naval Ordnance Test Unit (NOTU) Restore Poseidon Study with the amount of $175,000 and enhancing Brevard County’s Military Footprint in the amount of $50,270.”


Representative John Tobia said, “I want to thank Governor Scott and the Legislature for recognizing the importance of Florida’s military communities. This funding is vital to continuing our grant programs and supporting our soldiers.”


“The Florida Defense Grants Programs are vital for our military and defense industry, and strengthen Florida’s workforce through the highly skilled former military personnel who enter the employment market each year. I am proud to play a part in supporting our military installations and communities, and appreciate what our service men and women do to protect our state,” said Gray Swoope, Florida Secretary of Commerce and President & CEO of Enterprise Florida.


A combined $2,450,000 was awarded to 14 communities in the state, helping to protect and improve 19 installations, and furthering Florida’s reputation as the most military friendly state in the nation.


“The Defense Reinvestment Grant enhances the EDC’s reach and engagement with our military installations in an era of continued uncertainty in defense budget priorities and efficiency measures,” says Lynda Weatherman, President/CEO, of the Economic Development Commission of Florida’s Space Coast.


“This grant will accelerate the restoration process”, continued Weatherman, “A fully functional Poseidon wharf infrastructure at Port Canaveral allows for the stability and potential growth of vital U.S. Navy missions.”


The 2014-15 Defense Grants were awarded to defense partners in the following counties: Polk, Brevard (2), Duval (2), Santa Rosa (2), Okaloosa (2), Clay (2), Pinellas, Escambia (2), Orange (2), Bay (2), Miami-Dade, Hillsborough, Walton and Highlands.


The Florida Defense Grants Programs are administered by Enterprise Florida, Inc. The grants are awarded annually through a competitive process to communities hosting military installations.


Comments are closed.