The public now has access to reports of on-board crimes compiled by the U.S. Department of Transportation that were not available in years past.
The governors of Arizona and Sonora, Mexico, on Friday signed an agreement to promote Rocky Point, or Puerto Peñasco, on both sides of the border.
Govs. Doug Ducey and Claudia Pavlovich hope the memorandum of understanding will pressure the Mexican government to provide the remaining funding for construction of a home port for cruise ships — a development touted as an economic boon for both states.
“It’s going to be Arizona’s port,” Pavlovich said Friday during the Arizona-Mexico Commission Summit in Paradise Valley. “Puerto Peñasco is three hours away from Phoenix, and six or seven hours from Hermosillo … so it’s closer to Phoenix.”
Construction of the port is at the midpoint. But the Mexican federal government has committed only half of the $60 million needed to build the facility, which will allow ships with capacity of up to 3,000 passengers to dock in the Gulf of California, known in Mexico as the Sea of Cortez.
Once it’s finished, the port is expected to provide a boost to the already booming tourism industry in Rocky Point. A majority of visitors there hail from the United States, mostly Arizona.
“We think it’s a great opportunity,” Ducey said of the port and memorandum. “It’s more to raise the profile and to let our citizens know that this opportunity exists. … We’re going to partner in the promotion.”
The cruise ship industry is expected to generate thousands of jobs directly or indirectly in the state of Sonora.
Pavlovich described it as a “win-win” that can also create economic opportunities north of the border.
“There’s a great deal of certainty for cruise lines that supplies can come from Arizona,” she said. “We’re talking about flowers, tablecloths, everything that is generated in a large boat with over 3,000 passengers.”
The Sonoran government said cruise ships likely will begin docking at Rocky Point in 2019.
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