Last Call — A prime-time read of what’s going down in Florida politics.
A new report shows Florida seaports are ready to take advantage of a realignment in global trade routes.
The Seaport Mission Plan, Florida Ports: Open for Business, released by the Florida Seaport Transportation and Economic Development Council, analyzes the health and capabilities of Florida ports, as well as trends on the horizon.
The report comes as many West Coast ports face the prospect of strikes, lockouts or slowdowns due to still ongoing labor contract negotiations.
Florida’s ports have already seen a boost in business as shippers look for a more stable place to dock — overall, the total tonnage flowing in and out of the state’s 15 seaports increased by 118.4% year-over-year.
The report highlighted that JAXPORT recently welcomed its vessel in Sea Lead Shipping Pte Ltd’s new Asia East Coast container service. A new direct Asia service is also calling on Tampa Bay while MSC has launched its new Zephyr service from northern China and South Korea to the U.S. Gulf Coast, and it includes a direct call to Port Everglades.
Florida ports intend to continue raising their stature through infrastructure investments, with $4.5 billion in seaport capital improvements identified over the next five years.
The bulk of that money (75%) would be spent to improve the state’s Atlantic Coast ports. Broken down by industry, 30.8% would be spent on cruise terminals, 21.8% on cargo terminals, 19.8% on berth rehabilitation and repairs and 7.9% on site improvements.
“Florida’s continued investment in our seaports have made it a destination for companies from around the world frustrated with the logjams at Pacific coast ports,” Gov. Ron DeSantis said in a news release. “We will continue to make the investments necessary to bolster our supply chain and improve our infrastructure to bring more business to Florida’s seaports.”
—“ Donald Trump looks to fall launch for 2024, potentially upending midterms” via Michael Scherer and Josh Dawsey of The Washington Post
—“ Lindsey Graham reveals why he supports Trump instead of Ron DeSantis as GOP’s 2024 nominee” via Fox News
—“ ‘Women get pregnant and not men’: Gov. DeSantis picks new anti-woke fight” via Renzo Downey of Florida Politics
—“ What’s behind Biden’s record-low approval rating?” via Geoffrey Skelley of FiveThirtyEight
—“ Vice President Kamala Harris slams Florida abortion law in visit to Orlando” via Skyler Swisher of the Orlando Sentinel
—“ DNC launches ad highlighting GOP plans for further abortion restrictions” via Mike Memoli of NBC News
—“ Which Florida Democrat hoping to replace DeSantis is raising more money off abortion?” via Kirby Wilson and Emily L. Mahoney of the Tampa Bay Times
—“ Goodbye courtroom? Citizens Property Insurance wants claims disputes heard by admin judges” via William Rabb of Insurance Journal
—“ State working to procure health care for medically complex children” via Christine Jordan Sexton of Florida Politics
—“ Screwy plan for a new Florida city outrages its rural neighbors” via Craig Pittman of the Florida Phoenix
—“ Candidates seeking local office air concerns at League of Women Voters forum” via John Henderson of The Gainesville Sun
“Personally, I identify as a Cuban sandwich.”
— U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, poking at First Lady Jill Biden’s “breakfast taco” comment.
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