In April, a delegation from Brazil arrived in Tallahassee to learn about the state, federal, and local role in infrastructure planning and coastal environmental protection. They met with Chief Engineer Tom Byron and other representatives from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to discuss ongoing projects for roads and bridges within the state, what plans are in place for states of emergency during hurricanes and flooding, and what challenges have arisen from evacuation routes (such as during Hurricane Katrina). FDOT also addressed relations with the media and direct outreach with the public regarding infrastructure and major projects.
The visiting delegation included Gustavo Horta Palhares, Cabinet Chief of the Belo Horizonte Metropolitan Region Development Agency, Gustavo Jorge Lago, Director of Operations for Porto do Itaqui, EMAP, and the State of Maranhao Port Authority, Andre Marques Rebelo, Strategic Affairs Advisor of the Presidency of Federation of Industries of the State of Sao Paulo (FIESP), and Andre Nunes de Nunes, Chief Economist of the Department for Economic Studies of the Federation of Industries of Rio Grande do Sul. They were accompanied by Departments of State Language Officers Steve Mines and Alex Ladd, who provided translations.
This project aimed to educate participants about:
- the functions of state and local governments in infrastructure planning and their interactions with the federal government;
- the separation of powers within government and the cooperation between the public and private sectors;
- the roles played by state and local government in outreach and administering public services;
- best practices regarding large infrastructure funding approaches, program and engineering management ;
- strategies for integrating mega infrastructure programs and how to harness new development to foster competitiveness; and
- the challenges posed by massive infrastructure development both short-term and long-term.