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Water Resources

Civil Works Budget Proposes $4.06 Billion Program

President Clinton's budget transmitted to Congress includes $4.06 billion for the USACE Civil Works program. In addition the program will include $322 million in non-federal contributions and trust fund receipts. Funding in this request will be used to continue the development of the nation's water resources, the efficient operations, maintenance and management of the nation's navigation, flood damage reduction, and multiple-purpose projects, the equitable regulation of wetlands, and the restoration of important environmental resources such as the South Florida Ecosystem. The budget also begins to address some of the Corps long-term water resources infrastructure main-tenance requirements. The budget includes a proposal to establish a Harbor Services User Fee and Harbor Services Fund (HSF). Under this proposal, fees would be charged to vessels transiting the harbors of the U.S. These receipts would be placed in the HSF and would be available the following fiscal year for appropriation to fund both construction and operation and maintenance of the nation's channels and harbors. The existing Harbor Maintenance Tax and Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund would be repealed, and the remaining balance of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund would be deposited in the new HSF. The budget proposes to appropriate $950 million from the fund in FY 01, with $250 million applied to port improvement construction and $700 million to fund operation and maintenance requirements.


AAPA Applauds Vote on WRDA

After a successful floor vote in the U.S. House of Representatives today to approve passage of a Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) authorization bill, American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) President/CEO Kurt Nagle applauded committee and subcommittee leaders for championing the legislation, noting that this is a prelude to conference and final passage of one of the most critically-needed authorization bills of this session.


AAPA Hails Senate Passage of Water Resources Development Act

The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) welcomed the U.S. Senate’s approval last evening of the long-pending Water Resources Development Act (S. 728), which addresses a six-year backlog of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers programs, including navigation projects, policies and procedures necessary to keep pace with today’s burgeoning trade. The bill also includes a number of important provisions for the Corps, such as an amendment proposed by Sens


President Bush Vetoes WRDA bill

The White House issued a statement from President Bush saying that he has vetoed the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA), contending that the measure was not fiscally responsible. The measure now goes back to Congress where an attempt will be made to override the veto. [Source: HK Law]


WCI, AWO Welcome Process to Reauthorize WRDA

The Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) and The American Waterways Operators (AWO) expressed their support of the bipartisan process to move a long overdue Water Resources Development Act (WRDA).  House efforts, led by House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA), along with Ranking Member Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV), as well as Water Resources and Environment Committee Chairman Bob Gibbs (R-OH) and Ranking Member Rep


What Will WRDA Legislation Bring?

Mike Toohey

On November 8, speaking at the Port of New Orleans, President Obama said “… corn and wheat is coming down from my home state of Illinois down the river, ending up here and then going all around the world. And it’s part of the reason we’ve been able to increase exports so rapidly is because we have some of the best natural resources and waterways and facilities in the world.” This was a victory for the inland waterways industry because while the President has


Port Industry Urges Congress To Fund Investments

During testimony today before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, port director Erik Stromberg urged Congress to provide adequate funding for deep draft navigation projects. Stromberg is executive director of the North Carolina State Ports Authority in Wilmington, N.C. He testified on behalf of the American Association of Port Authorities, a trade association representing ports in the Western Hemisphere.


Birnbaum Named Director of MMS

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar appointed Liz Birnbaum, an attorney with two decades of federal government and private sector experience in energy and environmental policy, as Director of the Department’s Minerals Management Service. The appointment does not require Senate confirmation. As Director of the Minerals Management Service, Birnbaum administers programs that ensure the effective management of renewable and traditional energy and mineral resources on the nation’s


Dredging Vital to US Ports, Senate Hearing Informed

Houston Ship Channel Dredging: Photo courtesy of AAPA

Chairman American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) explains  the importance of dredging to the industry & the US economy. Jerry Bridges, the American Association of Port Authorities’ Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Virginia Port Authority in his testimony informed  the hearing, entitled 'Water Resources Development Act: Growing the Economy and Protecting Public Safety', of the fundamental importance of dredging to the industry.


Peter Stephaich Testifies in Favor of New WRDA

Peter Stephaich. Photo: WCI

Peter Stephaich, Chairman of Campbell Transportation Company in Pittsburgh, PA, and Executive Committee member of Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI), testified before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee on “Foundations for a New Water Resources Development Act (WRDA).” Mr. Stephaich addressed the importance of water resources development legislation


Good News for Inland Waterways - Just in Time

On January 17, 2014, Congress averted another government shutdown with a “just in time” delivery of an Omnibus Appropriations bill. Thankfully, some good news for the inland waterways also has arrived; Just in Time! The recent Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014, or Omnibus bill


GPA Reports 6% Container Growth

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The Georgia Ports Authority has moved more than 2 million twenty-foot equivalent container units (TEUs) so far this fiscal year (July-February), for an increase of 6.2 percent or an additional 119,318 TEUs. “The strong growth experienced throughout our business sectors this fiscal year


AWO Urged Action on Waterways Infrastructure

Tom Allegretti

As part of the American Waterways Operators’ annual Barge-In, U.S. vessel owners, operators and mariners are fanning out all over Capitol Hill today visiting nearly 150 Congressional offices to talk about the industry’s top advocacy priorities and the industry’s important role as


Infrastructure Investments Strengthen Soybean Supply Chain

ISA efforts to open soybean markets through improved transportation infrastructure span overseas, including a recent trade mission to Southeast Asia that focused on exporting more Illinois soybeans in containers.  Photo by Scott Sigman.

Transportation plays a crucial role in the soybean supply chain. With access to multiple transportation modes, Illinois soybean farmers enjoy significant advantages for reaching domestic and global markets. But aging transportation infrastructure can increase costs for Illinois farmers.


U.S. Bill Allows Port Everglades to Deepen, Widen Channels

Congresswoman Lois Frankel

Port Everglades officials are encouraged after the House of Representatives passed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) this week by a vote of 417-3, including the Manager’s Amendment which would allow Port Everglades to move forward with its critical harbor deepening and


Tomer Joins Parsons Brinckerhoff

Richard Tomer

Richard Tomer has been named a Regulatory and Permitting Specialist at Parsons Brinckerhoff, a global infrastructure strategic consulting, engineering and program/construction management organization. In his new position, Mr. Tomer will provide technical regulatory services throughout the New


Downtown Baton Rouge to House World-Class Water Campus

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Today, Governor Bobby Jindal, officials from the Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority (CPRA), Department of Economic Development and the Baton Rouge Area Foundation (BRAF) joined leaders from the City of Baton Rouge, The Water Institute of the Gulf


U.S. Port Security and the Impact of Sequester & Budget Woes

Coast Guard transportable port security boats attached to Port Security Unit 308 and riverine command boats from Riverine Squadron (RIVRON) 2 practice maneuvers together in the Intracoastal Waterway in North Carolina. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Richard Brunson)

Impact of the Sequester and Budget Showdowns on Ports and Port Security & the Outlook for WRDA   This article describes the impact of the “sequester” and budget showdowns on ports and port security, and also gives a preview of the House-Senate Conference on the Water


2013 in Review: LNG, the Arctic, Infrastructure and Beyond

Joe Keefe

The month of December is typically when we look back to see what went right, what didn’t and how our prognostications for the previous 11 months look, all roiled together in our muddy wake.   In the interests of transparency, I looked back on this very same column


Bishop to Address SUNY Maritime Commencement

Photo courtesy SUNY Maritime

Congressman Tim Bishop will deliver the commencement address when SUNY Maritime graduates its mid-year class Friday, January 31. Maritime’s President, Dr. Michael Cappeto, said, “Congressman Bishop is a friend of higher education, transportation


Boxer, Shuster to be AAPA’s 2014 ‘Port Persons of Year’

AAPA President & CEO Kurt Nagle

U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer (D-CA) and U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster  (R-PA) have been jointly selected to receive the American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) 2014 “Port Person of the Year” award. The bi-partisan nomination for AAPA’s most prestigious annual award was


Loan Options for the Marine Industry

The USSBA, USDA and USDOT’s Loan Programs As we launch into 2014, the domestic waterfront continues to fire on all pistons; boatbuilding, charter rates, utilization of tonnage, and so much more. That kind of momentum, however, requires funding to sustain


WCI Responds to State of the Union Address

Michael J. Toohey, President and CEO of Waterways Council, Inc.

Michael J. Toohey, President and CEO of Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI), issued the following statement today regarding President Obama’s State of the Union address last night: Waterways Council, Inc. and its members applaud President Obama’s urging of Congress to pass a Water


WCI Honors Congressman Whitfield

Congressman Ed Whitfield (right) with Stephen Little, President/CEO of Crounse Corporation in Paducah, Kentucky

Congressman Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.) was presented Waterways Council, Inc.'s (WCI) 13th Annual Leadership Service Award for his strong and continued leadership on ports and inland waterways issues. Congressman Whitfield was presented the Leadership Service Award on February 12, 2014 in Washington, DC


WCI Praises IWTF Tax Reform

Michael J. Toohey (Photo: WCI)

Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) President and CEO Michael J. Toohey today praised the leadership of House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) for inclusion of a recommendation to increase, by six cents per-gallon, the 20-cent-per-gallon user fee paid for by inland waterways


 
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