Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Port Authority's Operating Revenue Up in Fiscal 2003

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Port Authority's Operating Revenue Up in Fiscal 2003

Article excerpt

Byline: CHRISTOPHER CALNAN, The Times-Union

Jacksonville Port Authority said it's off to a good start in its new fiscal year, with total tonnage for the fiscal year's first month, October, up 3 percent over last year.

While bulk cargoes were up 19 percent and breakbulk cargoes were down 43 percent, numbers for both cargo types often fluctuate widely from month to month, and a true trend won't emerge until after the first quarter, the authority said.

The Port Authority said it earned $30.3 million in operating revenue in fiscal 2003 (ending Sept. 30), a Port Authority record. The 10 percent increase over fiscal 2002 revenue ($27.6 million), and marks the fourth straight year of revenue growth at the authority.

Meanwhile, operating expenses at the Port Authority fell to $17.3 million, the lowest level in four years and a 15 percent decrease from fiscal 2002 ($20.4 million).

Environmental expansion

Southern Waste Services Inc., known as SWS Environmental First Response, said it opened a new response center in Jacksonville in October.

This new center in the Talleyrand Avenue area is the 10th response center in the state for SWS and 14th overall in the Southeast.

The 13-year-old company, based in Panama City Beach, is expanding its locations to react quicker to environmental emergencies of any kind. And Jacksonville transportation industry makes it a prime market, SWS spokesman Jamie Michael said.

"By having a response center in Jacksonville, it enables us to have complete coverage in Florida," he said. "We're talking about spills of anything that need to be cleaned up. There really isn't anything we can't clean up and contain."

SWS client and Jacksonville resident Tom Murta, CSX Transportation's director of field services and hazardous materials, said, "SWS is a roll-over contractor -- you call them and then you roll over and go back to sleep. …

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