MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) – The dredge that will deepen Miami’s port, Governor Scott believes, will produce thousands of jobs statewide.

The dredging operation will enable the Port of Miami to receive larger cargo ships that pass through the widened Panama Canal.

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Scott and Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos Gimenez were among the officials who toured by boat the dredge Terrapin Island. The dredge is deepening the port’s main channel to 50 feet in the next 18 months, before the larger Panama Canal opens.

Scott and Gimenez say the PortMiami improvements will eventually create 33,000 jobs across the state.

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The state is contributing $112 million and Miami-Dade County $108 million for the deepening project.

The plan also calls for several environmental mitigation projects, including restoration of 16 acres of sea grass in Biscayne Bay and creation of nine acres of artificial reef.

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