Rick Scott Directs DOT Money for Port Canaveral Growth
Gov. Rick Scott, who has championed bulking up Florida’s seaports as a means to attract more global trade, has called for the fast-tracking of the widening and deepening of Port Canaveral's shipping channel by pumping $24.4 million into the $65 million project.
The action is expected to advance the work from 2017 to 2014, allowing larger cargo and cruise ships into the port.
“Port Canaveral is a key component to the region’s long-term vitality and a driving economic force of the Space Coast, as well as Central Florida’s hub to the world, and this port and this region cannot wait several more years for this crucial project to be complete,” Scott stated in a release. “Florida will step up to help create construction jobs in the near future and lasting permanent jobs, rather than take a chance on getting the federal government’s help.”
The money, from the state Department of Transportation, will be combined with $32.5 million in state grants and $8.1 million from Port Canaveral.
In February, Scott floated $22.5 million in transportation funding to pump up the petroleum capacity at the Port of Tampa.
Last year, Scott shipped $77 million from the state DOT into the Port of Miami to dredge the channel from its current 42 feet to 50-to-52 feet so it could handle the large Panamax vessels that will flow with more cargo through an expanded Panama Canal starting in 2014.
More to come.