WASHINGTON, D.C. — Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll traveled recently to the nation’s capital to testify before the U.S. International Trade Commission in support of Florida's growing jet manufacturing business. A statement from Carroll’s office said the industry is expanding and employing some displaced NASA shuttle engineers and technicians, many of whom have been hard hit by downsizing of the space program.
Increasing manufacturing jobs in Florida will enhance export opportunities for many businesses in the state, the statement said.
Carroll, who is the governor’s liason with the military on bases in the state, also chairs Space Florida. She met with military and NASA officials, including Air Force Assistant Secretary Terry Yonkers, Navy Vice Admiral Michael Vitale and NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, the statement said.
She also met with congressional staffers for Florida Republican members of Congress Ileana Ros-Lehtinen and Allen West, “to address critical issues impacting South Florida military bases.”
“These meetings focused on Florida military installations which are vital to the state's economy and the cornerstone of America's defense and aerospace industries, which combined, employ nearly one million Floridians,” the statement said, without going into details.
During Carroll’s meeting with Bolden, she expressed her appreciation to him for his support for Florida’s space program. They discussed ways to enhance launch opportunities at Kennedy Space Center, expand space exploration and using the technology and skilled workforce at the Cape Canaveral-based center, the statement said.
“I had very productive visits. By the time I arrived to each person’s office, they were fully aware of my involvement and activities, both at Cape Canaveral and the military installations throughout Florida,” Carroll said in the statement. “Each person I met with was ready to present solutions and offer assistance to address Florida’s issue.”
According to Carroll, “The word was out in D.C. that Florida had its finger on the pulse of the space, aerospace and military industry and they all appreciated the level of support Florida has shown.”
Photo: JOHN KONUS/OFFICE OF LT. GOV. JENNIFER CARROLL
BUSINESS TRIP: Lt. Gov. Jennifer Carroll meets NASA Administrator Charles Bolden during her recent trip to Washington, D.C., to drum up business for the state.