Amendment #3 signed for Manatee Harbor Navigation Project

Leaders of the Army Corps and SeaPort Manatee have executed an amendment to the longstanding Project Cooperation Agreement governing their partnership in the Manatee Harbor Navigation Project.

SeaPort Manatee

In a formal signing ceremony, Col. James Booth, USACE Jacksonville District Commander, and George Kruse, Chairman of the Manatee County Port Authority, updated the PCA to credit the SeaPort’s expenditures for the 2012 construction of the port’s south channel extension.

Known as Amendment #3, the update authorizes the reimbursement to SeaPort Manatee for the federal share of that construction, subject to the availability of federal funds. The south channel extension has played a significant role in the port’s subsequent growth and plans for expansion.

USACE involvement began with a 1974 congressional resolution to study navigation and water resource conditions at the port. A feasibility report and Environmental Impact Statement were completed in 1978 recommending maintenance of the extant channel, enlargement of the channel entrance and the addition of a turning basin. Congress authorized the Manatee Harbor Florida Navigation Project in 1986.

The Corps completed dredging the channel from the main shipping channel of Tampa Bay to the port in 1997; entrance channel widening and construction of a turning basin were completed in 2005; and Port Manatee completed construction of the south channel extension in 2012.

The present amendment formally recognizes that contribution as an integral element of the federal project and allows for federal compensation for its added value.