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Supply Chain Congestion Topic of Discussion for Economic Development Task Force

The issue of supply chain congestion and solutions were tackled during a meeting today with the Logistics Industry Task Force of the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County.

Supply chain congestion involves delays preventing the efficient flow of goods traveling on various transportation modes including air, sea and land.

Task Force Chair and WDSrx Marketing Director Larry Hotz moderated the discussion with industry experts who outlined the current status of distribution channels nationally and on the regional level that affect business growth in Palm Beach County.  WDSrx is a logistics services provider specializing in pharmaceutical distribution.

Business Development Board (BDB) of Palm Beach County Senior Vice President Gary Hines (left) and WDSrx Marketing Director Larry Hotz moderate a discussion about supply chain congestion with members of the BDB Logistics and Distribution Task Force.

Air freight volume is up approximately 4% in 2019 over 2018 at Palm Beach International Airport (PBIA) according to Jerry Allen, Deputy Director of airports for Palm Beach County.  The master plan for the airport includes additional capacity for freight as the need develops.

Rick Murrell, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Saltchuk Resources, a family of diversified transportation and distribution companies operating globally, mentioned that the islands of the Caribbean are the fifth largest in the world for non-oil exports from the United States.  Murrell is encouraged that President Trump is meeting in Florida March 23 with leaders from Caribbean nations for wide-ranging discussions to hopefully include U.S. – Caribbean trade in the face of competition from China and other markets.

The State of Florida and Palm Beach County are expanding ‘smart’ systems for roadways including traffic signals with operable vehicle detection, according to Andrew Uhlir, Deputy Director of Program Development at the Palm Beach Transportation Planning Agency (TPA). The Congestion Management Process supervised by the TPA prioritizes strategies to increase freight volume at both PBIA and also the Port of Palm Beach.

Driver shortage for freight hauling is a popular news issue with some estimates pronouncing a need for another 50,000 drivers to meet demands for roadway transportation.  Ed Chism, Healthcare and Critical Logistics Manager at Expeditors, a global logistics and freight forwarding company based in Seattle, Washington, acknowledged the difficulty in recruiting qualified drivers across the country and noted wages have increased to attract labor.  These added costs, plus new Federal requirements governing maximum working hours and break times, are often passed on to end-consumers.

The Logistics and Distribution Task Force serves as a resource of relevant information for the Business Development Board to utilize in their important work.  The mission of the BDB is to attract businesses into Palm Beach County, retain existing businesses within the County and promote Palm Beach County as a vibrant and diversified business community.

For further information contact Larry Hotz, or 561-998-3885 x304.

Are any Controlled Substances (CII) included in your return? If so, please press "Yes" and complete the DEA 222 Request Form. You can also contact Jason Solomon at or (561) 998-3885 x316.