Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton issued the following statement today following the U.S. Navy's announcement to homeport a nuclear carrier at Mayport Naval Station:
“The Navy's decision to permanently homeport a nuclear-powered aircraft carrier at Mayport Naval Station is tremendous news for the City of Jacksonville and its treasured military community.
Home-porting an aircraft carrier at Mayport is not only good for the country, it is big news for our local economy. In addition to dispersing the Navy's fleet, the home-porting of a nuclear carrier will bring more than $460 million in infrastructure improvements to make the naval station nuclear capable by 2012.
The move will bring an additional 3,190 crew members to Mayport. Adding nuclear home-porting capability to Mayport guarantees its place as one of the premier naval stations in the world and ensures its longevity for decades.
The effort to bring a nuclear carrier to Mayport Naval Station has been a priority of my administration. Today's announcement is confirmation of tremendous support and hard work from local officials and our Congressional delegation over a number of years.
Beginning with the decommissioning of the USS SARATOGA, Florida's U.S. Reps. Tillie Flower and Corrine Brown began laying the groundwork to make Mayport nuclear-capable, and Florida's U.S. Reps. Ander Crenshaw and Corrine Brown have continued those efforts with the backing of Florida's U.S. Sens. Bill Nelson and Mel Martinez. Both Govs. Bush and Crist have also been strong advocates and supported this effort with grant dollars for years.”