News & Updates

President’s Message: March 2024

Mike Rubin
President & CEO

Another successful Trans-Pacific Maritime (TPM) conference is in the books. One of the country’s largest annual symposiums for ocean carriers and shippers, the Florida Ports Council, along with leadership from several of Florida’s seaports, were able to use the opportunity to recruit additional business to call on Florida ports.

TPM 2024

TPM has proven to be a highly successful opportunity to meet with shipping executives, and to successfully encourage them to #SeasTheOpportunities at a Florida seaport.

Lawmakers wrapped-up the 2024 Legislative Session on March 8, after hammering out a budget deal for the upcoming new fiscal year. While Governor Ron DeSantis has not yet ratified the budget into law, lawmakers allocated funding to a handful of seaport and transportation-related initiatives.

Included in the recently passed budget are $110 million for Florida’s 16 seaports, $26 million for crane modernization at JAXPORT, $1.2 million for upgrades at Port Putnam, and $75,000 for a workforce needs assessment at PortMiami. Special thanks to our port leadership for engaging in the legislative process this year and helping secure investments for Florida’s seaports.

In the coming months, we’ll be meeting with elected leaders to already begin laying groundwork to ensure Florida ports are well-positioned to secure even more commerce in the coming years. Stay tuned for more information about these efforts in the coming weeks.

With Spring officially here, our cruise ports are seeing high traffic, as many cruisers take advantage of a vacation break. That’s certainly welcome news.

At the same time, we’re also aware of the unrest in Haiti, and fully support Governor DeSantis and his leadership to ensure Floridians remain safe. As our ports have always done, we stand ready to work with all law enforcement in the multi-level coordinated working effort of the Maritime Domain Awareness to help further protect Florida and the United States.

As always, thank you for your support of Florida’s dynamic ports.