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Thanks to Chuck Sherman who offered some great commentary over on our Facebook page (Found Here) wherein he analyzed a few numbers provided by none other than the Key West Chamber of Commerce.   At the heart of the matter, Sherman took a look at the factual data compiled when cruise ship passenger traffic actually decreased.  What happens to tax revenue, and what happens to unemployment and jobs when cruise passenger traffic actually decreases?  Well let’s have a look…

Sherman drew attention to a page on the Key West Chamber’s website (Found Here) and a statistical report (Found Here) that they compiled that precisely answered those exact questions above.

We took the liberty to compile the data from their report into a spreadsheet.

It clearly illustrates that since 2009, as the number of cruise ship passengers has declined, both bed tax, and taxable sales has INCREASED.   Regarding jobs, even though proponents of the “study” led by the Chamber suggest that jobs and the economy is their greatest concern, the Chamber’s own numbers illustrate that the employment picture actually improved as cruise passenger traffic fell off over the last four years.   But why struggle with numbers when we can compile easy to understand graphs.

Let’s first take a look at Bed Tax revenue.  Cruise passengers down, tax revenue up.
CP v Bed2

Next, let’s peruse Monroe County Taxable Sales….hmmm, here we see another obvious trend.  Cruise passengers down, taxable sales up.

Finally, let’s take a look at both the number of unemployed persons, and the unemployment rate.   Go figure, as cruise passenger traffic falls off, there is actually a lower unemployment rate, and less people unemployed.  Thanks again to Chuck for highlighting this very important factual element of the discussion.


Discussion (1)


  1. Mark Songer (Visitor)

    Looks pretty clear that the jobs created in hospitality and attractions segments were a lot more important to Key West than any jobs lost to the decline in cruise passengers.

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Silver Lining

Now, the amazing fishery around Key West in facing a threat from a different sort of hole-- one inspired by a gamble with an uncertain claim that the Cruse ship industry is shifting to "Mega- Cruise Ships" and therefore requires dredging a wider channel to accommodate them.