Continuing his efforts to safeguard the future of commerce on the Great Lakes, Michigan Representative Jack Bergman is proposing a new policy to ensure baseline levels of funding for the backlogged maintenance projects along Great Lakes transportation routes.
The Great Lakes Navigation System (GLNS) is a deep-draft waterway connecting all five lakes through hundreds of navigation channels, breakwaters, jetties, harbors, and the MacArthur and Poe Locks at Sault Ste. Marie in Michigan’s First District.
The GLNS sustains American jobs and saves consumers $3.6 billion annually in freight costs.
In a letter to his Congressional colleagues, Rep. Bergman pushed for a minimum percentage of Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) resources to be focused on reducing the GLNS work backlogs, which are addressed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE).
Rep. Bergman said: “The locks are not only essential to our nation’s economy and national security, but they also compose the lynchpin of the GLNS. These valued points in the supply chain and many other key parts of the GLNS have considerable operations and maintenance needs which are supported by HMTF resources.”
Bergman’s request comes as lawmakers begin crafting the 2020 Water Resources and Development Act (WRDA), which authorizes USACE activities.