February 24, 2023

Pete Buttigieg Meets with Hurricane Ian Responders

U.S Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg Meets with Hurricane Ian Responders, Discusses Benefits of Bipartisan Infrastructure Law at AASHTO Conference

Orlando — Last week, U.S. Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg traveled to Florida, where he surveyed Hurricane Ian damage and met with local leaders and FEMA staff who are supporting recovery efforts. The Secretary also met with truck drivers who have been working to support efforts to deliver essential supplies and repair critical infrastructure — like the Sanibel Causeway and Pine Island bridge.

Secretary Buttigieg surveys damage from Hurricane Ian in a helicopter.

The Secretary also attended the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Annual Meeting, where he announced  for Florida to support Hurricane Ian recovery efforts. Secretary Buttigieg also spoke about how President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is delivering for Floridians and people across the country ahead of the law’s one year anniversary — thanks in no small part to the leadership of state transportation officials.

Secretary Buttigieg delivers remarks before a full audience at the AASHTO Annual Meeting.

Following the AASHTO conference, Secretary Buttigieg joined U.S. Representative Val Demings, U.S. Representative Daren Soto, Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings, Orlando Mayor Buddy Byer, Deputy FAA Administrator Bradley Mims, and other local leaders at Orlando International Airport to highlight a new  from USDOT, made possible by the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, that will support the construction of a new terminal. The project will create good-paying jobs, support Orlando’s tourism economy, and improve the airport experience for all travelers.

Secretary Buttigieg and Representative Demings listen at the airport roundtable.

At the airport, the Secretary also participated in a roundtable discussion focused on how USDOT, with the support of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, can best help the Sunshine State improve its infrastructure for the future.

You can read more about MCO’s grant and the Airport Terminals Program .

Selected media coverage:

Orlando Sentinel: 

“All of that was just in the first year’s worth of funding with this bipartisan infrastructure law,” Buttigieg said. “Imagine what we will be able to do over the next four years with that funding, and I know some of the folks here are going to be ready with applications.”

WESH 2 News: 

Orange County Mayor Jerry Demings said expanding transportation options is a way of supporting the area’s workforce.

“When we put our minds together and work to improve our infrastructure, it’s an opportunity for us to improve the lives of our workers,” he said.

Spectrum News 13: 

Saw it on social:

Pete Buttigieg (@SecretaryPete), secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation (@USDOT): “We are living through one of the most sustained and complex set of transportation disruptions in post-war epoch with the exception of 9–11.

It’s standing room only in Orlando for US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. I spoke with him 1:1 about a long list of transportation related issues and what the future holds.

.@MCO is the busiest airport in Florida and 7th busiest in the world. It fuels our tourist-driven economy. I’m proud to have fought for new funding for @MCO which will lead to more jobs, more business, and a brighter future.

@SecretaryPete: welcome to Central Florida.

It was an honor to participate in a roundtable with @SecretaryPete and

@RepValDemings. We discussed the Department’s support of @MCO’s Terminal C expansion, transportation funds to fix the traffic, and a new $50M grant to help counties in Florida rebuild after Hurricane Ian.

State and local leaders across the country continue to put historic resources from the infrastructure law to use improving infrastructure. I look forward to continued engagement on projects that will transform our transportation future.

We’re making record investments across the country to rebuild aging airports and meet the needs of travelers. Orlando International Airport (@MCO) recently received $50M through #BIL to expand its Terminal C which will improve the experience for passengers and support good jobs.

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