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AAPA calls for long-term funding for port maintenance


The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) is calling on Congress to implement a long-term funding solution for port maintenance and freight infrastructure.

In written testimony submitted to the U.S. House Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, AAPA officials called for federal investment in landslide and waterside connections to seaports and full utilization of the Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT).

“Landside and waterside investments are critical to building America’s 21st century seaport infrastructure,” said Kurt Nagle, AAPA chief executive officer, in a press release. “AAPA has highlighted $66 billion in federal need over the next decade for port-related infrastructure. About half of that need, $33.8 billion, is for waterside investments.”

AAPA officials identified HMT as an existing funding opportunity to address the needs of seaports. HMT is paid by shippers to ensure ports are well maintained. 

The HMT offers a “unique and important revenue source” that can keep ports and harbors operating at maximum potential, said Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Eugene Seroka, who testified at the subcommittee's April 10 hearing.

A long-term funding solution for port maintenance that makes full use of the HMT more permanent and includes language to address tax fairness and cargo diversion problems is critical, AAPA officials said. 

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 4/12/2019