MIAMI (CBSMiami/CNN/NSF) – Alaska has joined forces with Florida in a legal battle over the Centers for Disease Control’s no sail order for the cruise industry.
The Republican Governor of Alaska, Mike Dunleavy, said his state has lost $3 billion because of the cruise industry stoppage last year.READ MORE: Pilot, Student Headed To North Perry Airport Hospitalized After Plane Crash Near Miramar Strip Mall
So Alaska has joined the lawsuit filed by Florida against the CDC.
The Sunshine State wants to be able to resume cruises immediately.
“I’m fighting to ensure our tourism business and communities have a chance,” said Dunleavy.
DeSantis has maintained the ban disproportionally impacts Florida and has said that cruising has resumed in much of the world, forcing Americans to fly to other ports in the nearby Bahamas. Industry leaders say there have been no new outbreaks tied to their ships.
“We don’t believe the federal government has the right to mothball a major industry for over a year based on very little evidence and very little data. They’re going to fly to the Bahamas and they’re going to spend the money in the Bahamas. So how does that make any sense,” said Desantis at a press conference earlier this month at PortMiami.
Florida is at the heart of the U.S. cruise industry, with PortMiami, Port Everglades and Port Canaveral among the busiest ports in the world. Millions of passengers pass through in a typical year. It’s worth billions of dollars for the state’s economy.READ MORE: Lawsuit Challenges Florida's Gambling Agreement With Seminole Tribe
The CDC’s no sail order cost the state more than $3.2 billion in revenue in just the first six months of the pandemic, according to cruise industry executives.
The CDC has said it will not lift the order before November.
On Thursday, Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody has asked a judge for a preliminary injunction to block the CDC’s restrictions.
Moody’s office filed a 27-page motion in federal court in Tampa arguing that the CDC has violated a law known as the Administrative Procedure Act by issuing guidelines that have kept cruise ships from sailing.
The motion pointed to issues such as the emergence of vaccines, which Moody’s office argued have not been adequately taken into account by federal health officials.
“This court should preliminarily enjoin the CDC’s unlawful acts and allow the approximately 159,000 Floridians whose livelihoods depend on the cruise industry to get back to work,” the motion said. “Without this court’s intervention, Florida will lose millions, if not billions, of dollars.”
The state filed the lawsuit April 8. As of Friday morning, the federal government had not filed arguments in the case.MORE NEWS: South Florida Businesses Relying On Tourism Hope To Recover From Pandemic Lows
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