Statement from Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez on the Pay Our Coast Guard Act

MIAMI — After hearing from the office of Florida Sen. Rick Scott, I want to publicly state that I support U.S. Senate Bill 21, also called the Pay Our Coast Guard Act. This bill, cosponsored by both Florida senators, would ensure that the men and women of our Coast Guard receive their salaries during the ongoing federal government shutdown. The bill has bipartisan support, with many on both sides of the aisle advocating for its passage.

The Coast Guard is the only branch of the military that does not receive funding during the government shutdown, because it falls under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security and not the Department of Defense. There are over 4,800 active duty Coast Guard members in Florida affected by the shutdown. These are the men and women who continue to protect and defend our coastline as well as our seaport.

The security of our residents and visitors is my top concern. It is essential that Miami-Dade County’s airports and our seaport have all the federal resources they need to ensure the safety of our community and the nation. Our Coast Guard service members, as well as U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents and Transportation Security Administration workers, must have the support they need to keep us safe at all of our points of entry.