From the Captain’s Chair: Community Spirit March 28, 2018
MIASF is pleased to offer our congratulations to the newly elected mayor and commissioners of the City of Fort Lauderdale – Mayor Dean Trantalis, and Commissioners Steve Glassman, Heather Moraitis, and Ben Sorenson, who were sworn in on Tuesday, March 20th. We look forward to working collaboratively with all members of the Commission in support of marine industry and community priorities, including infrastructure and transit issues that directly impact us on a regular basis.
We will continue to engage in regular conversations with the leadership of Brightline and the FEC Railroad, as well as our elected officials and relevant agencies to advocate for a solution to increased passenger rail and its impact on the continued navigability of the New River, including the viability of a 45’ bascule bridge that would eliminate 80% of bridge openings, and a potential flyover for Broward Boulevard and other major roadways to improve traffic congestion and avoid gridlock.
In conjunction with the Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance, we recently released the latest Mega Yacht Study conducted by Thomas J. Murray and Associates. The report confirms South Florida’s dominance in mega yacht refit and repair and credits public policy initiatives like the sales tax cap, the refit tax cap, and local status as a foreign trade zone with the continued success. Notable highlights of the report are the number of mega yachts in the region has doubled in the last 10 years and Italy now produces 46% of the world mega yacht fleet. An executive summary and the full report can be found at http://www.miasf.org/about/library/.
Our Waterway View project, powered by Google Street View technology, is a valuable visibility and customer engagement tool for all marine industry companies in the South Florida region and the public response has been phenomenal. Remember, all MIASF members will receive a free standard listing when the app is launched in May and promoted listings must be requested through the link on the MIASF website. We are pleased to share this opportunity with our association partners at U.S. Superyacht Association, International Yacht Brokers Association, and the Miami Riverfront Commission.
The spirit of community is alive and well within the marine industry. MIASF offers its appreciation to the hundreds of volunteers and sponsors of the Broward County Waterway Cleanup, which, for 41 years, has engaged people of all ages and walks of life to join efforts and clean the local waterways to safeguard the environment and improve recreational activities. Also, MIASF was pleased to lend its support to Young Professionals in Yachting, who organized an industry fundraiser and silent auction that raised more than $5,000 to benefit the victims, teachers, and families of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting.
MIASF’s participation in last month’s Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance Mission to Nashville was an important reminder to local leaders in attendance that our South Florida marine industry is a critical economic driver. While Nashville proudly boasts a $6.6 billion music industry, we were able to reinforce the fact that the marine industry in Broward County alone produces an $8.8 billion economic impact, and regionally that amount swells to $11.5 billion.
Congratulations to Informa and the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach for a successful Palm Beach International Boat Show!