This is an excerpt from a larger article by Jocelyn Brumbaugh in the Thursday, January 30, 2014 edition of the Camden County Tribune & Georgian.
County administrator Steve Howard told the board that, after much dialogue, the property owners of the proposed spaceport site off Interstate 95 Exit 7 finalized a confidentiality agreement this week. An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), which costs $745,000, was approved by the board of commissioners and includes many steps with private companies, the Federal Aviation Administration and a private EIS consultant assigned to Camden’s officials.
Howard said the next step will be face-to-face meetings with the property owners and state officials. He also said that after the EIS is close to completion, starting a website on the project would help put the 4,000-acre site on the radar of space officials.
“It’s not only important to communicate with the community, but with others to let them know that you’re serious,” he said.
Howard also read from a news article that said Orlando, Fla., which is also interested in constructing a spaceport, anticipates that if two launch sites are constructed, 2,500 jobs will be created and there will be an economic impact of about $250 million. Howard exlpained that Camden County is also exploring the possibility of housing two launch sites and hope that if successful, the area will see similar positive economic impacts. Howard reminded the board and the audience that the spaceport project is nowhere near to being a done deal, seeing as how the EIS component of teh project can take about 24 months and other negotiations and legalities could stretch progress out even further.
“There are big hurdles left for us to cross”, Smith said.
Smith said he is looking forward to what lies ahead for the JDA and the county.
“I’m excited about the prospects for Camden County,” he said. “The environment and the climate is the best I’ve ever seen.”