Oregon’s Senators Jeff Merkley and Ron Wyden, joined by Representatives Peter DeFazio, Suzanne Bonamici and Earl Blumenauer, have urged the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to support essential dredging and maintenance of Oregon’s small ports in its 2017 work plan.
“Oregon’s ports and harbors are the lifeblood of the coastal communities they serve, enhancing regional and local economic development and supporting local job growth,” they wrote in a letter to Assistant Secretary of the Army for Civil Works Douglas Lamont.
“These ports support the activities of Federal agencies, such as the U.S. Coast Guard, and they are critical to maintaining and creating jobs, as the home to fishing fleets, marinas and recreational facilities. Unfortunately, these federal commercial navigation projects are routinely overlooked and, year-after-year, remain critically underfunded in the Administration’s budget.”
Members of the Oregon delegation have pushed hard to ensure that small ports’ needs are met in funding bills.
Congress recently included additional support for small port projects in the new funding bill that passed at the end of April. These funds could ensure the completion of critical work at the ports of Bandon, Depoe Bay, Gold Beach, Reedsport and Newport if the Army Corps agrees to include those projects in its 2017 work plan.