Gov. Rick Scott dedicated Cecil Field as a Spaceport Saturday afternoon during a ceremonial signing of House Bill 59. The bill was passed by Florida lawmakers during the 2012 legislative session as part of a push to develop the state's aerospace and high-tech industries.
“It is critical that we continue to focus on and invest in infrastructure projects that will directly benefit our state’s economy,” said Scott. “Having Cecil Field designated as a spaceport will play a major role in the continued development of Florida’s aerospace and aviation industries and will continue to keep our economy heading in the right direction.”
For years, Cecil Field, the city of Jacksonville and the state of Florida have tried to attract international companies to the West Jacksonville area.
Before the bill was passed, Florida law only designated two areas, Cape Canaveral Spaceport and Eglin Air Force Base, as spaceport territories.
The group Space Florida said the aerospace and aviation industries brought in $17.8 billion, employing over 74,200 people.
In Duval, Nassau, St. Johns and Clay counties the industry employs over 6,781 people, according to Space Florida and the governor's office.