U.S. Senator Mary L. Landrieu, D-La., applauded House passage of the Realize America’s Maritime Promise (RAMP) Act, as an amendment to the House transportation bill.
This legislation was introduced by Congressman Charles W. Boustany Jr., R-La., and states that funds in the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) should be utilized for the intended purpose of dredging and maintaining coastal ports, harbors and waterways. The Harbor Maintenance Tax collects $1.3 to $1.6 billion annually.
“I commend and congratulate Congressman Boustany for passing this important piece of legislation through the House as part of its transportation bill. This legislation is extremely important for the proper maintenance of Louisiana’s ports, which are crucial for our trade and economic growth. I will push to ensure that the RAMP Act in its entirety is included in the final transportation bill that comes out of conference between House and Senate,” Sen. Landrieu said.
Despite the “surplus” in the trust fund, the Corps estimates that full channel dimensions at the nation’s busiest 59 ports are available less than 35 percent of the time.
Dredging Today Staff, April 23, 2012; Image: landrieu.senate.gov