Today, President Obama announced that more than 500 high-paying, technology jobs are on the way to Florida's space coast. Earlier this year, the President directed federal agencies to partner with Space Florida, an aerospace economic development agency, and the private sector to move forward with bringing much-needed jobs to Florida's space coast workforce.
NASA's Kennedy Space Center (KSC) in Cape Canaveral announced today that it has partnered with Space Florida and Boeing Corporation to build a commercial spacecraft in shuttle Discovery's former hangar at KSC. This partnership is expected to create hundreds of new jobs and opportunities to accelerate the development of the next-generation spacecraft.
"As the President has said, we can't wait for our colleagues across the aisle to step up to the plate and do what's best to create jobs now," said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-20). "It's clear from today's announcement that the Obama Administration and Democrats in Congress are focused on boosting our economy with partnerships like this one for Florida's space coast.
"Congress has struggled to pass spending bills, like those necessary to fund the space program. This is the kind of bold leadership that Florida and NASA need to keep the high-tech jobs in Florida. NASA has cultivated a highly skilled workforce over the past 50 years, and thanks to this partnership, it can continue to spur the creation of aerospace jobs in the future."
Boeing has said it is moving toward flying an Apollo-like spacecraft from Cape Canaveral starting in 2015. Other companies are entering the arena too, including Alliant Techsystems, Blue Origin, Excalibur Almaz, Orbital Sciences Corp., Sierra Nevada Corp., and others. All are aiming for mid-decade manned flights.
"The space program of tomorrow will combine the best the government and private industries have to offer," Rep. Wasserman Schultz said. "I am excited to see KSC become an international hub for private enterprise and NASA's future missions to travel farther into space."