Florida repeals background checks for maritime workers
background checks for maritime workers, unannounced port inspections and the deployment of law enforcement officers. “We have lessened the security in Florida ports,” said Bill Janes, a former director of one of the state agencies that oversaw port security, the governor’s Office of Drug Control. “I think the state is taking a huge step backwards.” Supporters of the repeal, including the authorities that operate Florida’s 14 ports, say the state law hurt commerce and duplicated security measures imposed by the federal government after 9-11. “There was never any evidence that this additional background check did anything but cost more money,” said Mike Rubin, vice president of the Florida Ports Council. However, many are against the repeal, claiming that it simply cannot be beneficial to lessen security. “The ports can now cut back on the amount they spend on security,” said Bruce Grant, director of the Office of Drug Control from 2009 until it was abolished by Scott in January. “That’s got to be detrimental. There’s no way it can’t be.” The authorities are trying to reduce costs – whether this will be beneficial in the long-term, time will only tell. It seems rare that reducing security for financial benefit assists a community, we have seen many circumstances in the past where it doesn’t.]]>
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