Official Press Release
Governor Scotts Florida Families First Budget for FY 2014 fully funds the Florida Department of Transportations (FDOT) Work Program investments in port, highway, bridge and other transportation infrastructure improvements. The FDOT budget is built upon the Governors vision to invest in job creation and to lower the cost of living for Floridas families by prioritizing vital transportation projects to facilitate economic development opportunities.
Governor Scott said, All the signs are positive - the unemployment rate is declining, the housing market is improving, consumer confidence is rising and economic growth in our communities is continuing. This is the right time to fund much needed transportation improvements. These strategic investments will create construction jobs and lay the foundation for the private sector to move to Florida, expand business and create long-term jobs.
The Governors recommended Work Program budget of $8.3 billion ensures the Department of Transportation plays a strong support role in achieving the Governors economic and budget priorities. Building the links in the transportation network improves the movement of freight from suppliers to markets and provides employment opportunities for Floridas families. The budget makes the following investments:
· $3.6 billion for construction of highway projects
· $288 million in seaport infrastructure improvements
· $169 million for aviation improvements
· $287 million for bridge repair and replacement to include replacing 31 bridges
· $765 million for maintenance and operation
· $401 million for public transit development grants
· $144 million for safety initiatives
FDOT Secretary Ananth Prasad said, By expanding capacity, relieving congestion and moving people and freight more efficiently, we create a state that keeps down the cost of living for our citizens and makes Florida the best place to live, work and visit.
The Governors budget recognizes that transportation investments are important for any economy to thrive even more so when the Governors policies are getting the economy back on track.
It creates short-term jobs especially in the construction industry which has been disproportionately affected by the economic downturn and it spurs economic development by providing certainty with long-term private sector jobs.
Florida Transportation Builders Association President Bob Burleson said, This is great news for the economy. I appreciate Governor Scotts leadership in recognizing the importance of transportation in moving Florida forward.
With the upcoming expansion of the Panama Canal and continued investment in our ports, Florida is uniquely positioned to become a major trade gateway with imports to North America and exports to Latin America and South America.
Florida Ports Council President Doug Wheeler said, Strategic investments in freight infrastructure and incentives to attract manufacturing are critical to Floridas ability to create jobs and further grow our economy. Governor Scotts proposed budget builds on his work thus far to put Floridians back to work, and will position Florida as a global hub for business.
These key port investments plus highway and railway improvements help the state move forward to develop manufacturing, distribution and logistics jobs and to have the best transportation system in the country.
List of Major FDOT projects for FY 2014 on the next page.