The Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development (FSTED) Council approved $15 million in allocations to seaport projects around the state.
The FSTED Council is comprised of the port directors for Florida’s 15 public seaports, and representatives from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and the Department of Economic Opportunity. There are 10 port projects included in these allocations, which now will become part of the FDOT 2014/15 Work Program that comes before the Florida Legislature for approval this next Legislative Session.
“Florida continues to be proactive in attracting future business to our state by strategically investing in seaport infrastructure,” said Manuel Almira, chair of the FSTED Council and port director for the Port of Palm Beach. “The process of identifying and vetting seaport projects using the depth of practical knowledge and experience represented on the Council has been extremely effective in making sure that state dollars are used wisely to boost the economy and create jobs in Florida.”
The Council also approved allocations under the new Strategic Port Investment Initiative within FDOT, which requires a minimum of $35 million be invested in priority seaport projects annually. This program was created by the Florida Legislature in 2012.
“With the agencies and Florida ports working together, Florida is positioning itself as a national leader in seaport infrastructure investment,” said Doug Wheeler, president and CEO of the Florida Ports Council. “We look forward to working with the Florida Legislature on the 2014/15 recommendations for seaport improvements.”
Press Release, October 3, 2013