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Inland Port @inlandportmag

2013 Issue I

Tulsa Port of Catoosa Q&A with Port Director Bob Portiss

NWC’s Amy Larson Testifies IRPT’s Wilmsmeyer on Lock & Dam System

IP Editorial Board

Jennifer Carpenter American Waterways Operators Sr. Vice President-National Advocacy, AWO

INLAND PORT MAGAZINE 2013 Issue I • Volume V ISSN 2156-7611 @inlandportmag Debra Colbert Waterways Council Senior Vice President, Communications Waterways Council

Michael Gerhardt Dredging Contractors of America Assistant Executive Director, DCA

Amy Larson National Waterways Conference President

Michael McQuillan Inland Rivers, Ports & Terminals Vice President, Hanson Professional Services

Brad Pickel Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association Executive Director, AIWA

Jim Stark Gulf Intracoastal Canal Association Executive Director

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HJP Hudson Jones Publications, LLC Houston, Texas • Tulsa, Oklahoma 281-602-5400 Editor Daron Jones Director of Advertising Jo Anne Hudson

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Inland Port 2013 • Issue I


A Port in Oklahoma?


Alabama Closer to New Intermodal Facility


In Praise of the Lock and Dam System


Harley Marine Awards US Fab Contract for New Alaskan Deck Barge


Transportation Secretary LaHood Stepping Down


Exclusive interview with Bob Portiss, Tulsa Port of Catoosa Director

By Dennis Wilmsmeyer, IRPT President



Mt. Vernon Barge Adds Second Full-Size Dry Dock


NWC’s Larson Urges Action on WRDA


Industry Notebook

Follow Inland Port Magazine on

NWC President and CEO Amy W. Larson, Esq., shares her recent congressional testimony



Port in


That’s right. In fact, the Tulsa Port of Catoosa is one of the largest, most inland ports in the United States. Located at the head of navigation for the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System in Northeast Oklahoma, the Tulsa Port of Catoosa offers year round, ice-free barge service with river flow levels


controlled by the U.S. Army

ob Portiss has served as port director for the Tulsa Port of Catoosa for almost 30 years, having been promoted to the position on July 1, 1984. He reports directly to the City of TulsaRogers County Port Authority board. In addition to managing the day-to-day activities of the port and its 2,000-acre industrial park, he is also the general manager of the Tulsa’s Port of Catoosa Facilities Authority, the Port’s financing agency. Portiss graduated from North Dakota State University with a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in economics. While in graduate

Corps of Engineers. We checked in with Port Director Bob Portiss to find out what’s new.


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school, he worked as a research assistant for the Upper Great Plains Transportation Institute where he completed and published two transportation studies. After graduation, Portiss went to work as director of projects for the Kiamichi Economic Development District in Wilburton, Oklahoma. Shortly thereafter, he was hired by the Tulsa Port of Catoosa as manager of traffic and sales. Portiss left the port in 1974 to become vice president of Landmark Land Company’s Arizona properties 2013 Issue I

in Clarkdale, Arizona. He then moved to Louisiana, where he was named Landmark’s general manager of commercial and industrial properties in and around LaPlace, Louisiana. In 1977, Portiss returned to the Tulsa Port of Catoosa to resume his former position as manager of traffic and sales. He was soon promoted to director of marketing and transportation and then to deputy port director. In 1984, Portiss was appointed port director – a position he has held ever since.

His waterway affiliations include the National Waterways Conference, for which he served five terms as chairman, and the Arkansas-Oklahoma Port Operator’s Association, for which he served three terms as president. Portiss is currently first vice president of the Arkansas Basin Development Association, a five-state water resource organization and also serves on the National Marine Board representing the Inland Waterway System. He previously served five terms as chairman of the Inland Waterway 5

Committee of the National Transportation Research Board. Portiss is a graduate of the American Economic/Industrial Development Institute, University of Oklahoma, where he earned his designation as a Certified Economic Developer (CED). He was kind enough to share his thoughts with IP on where the port has been, and where it’s headed. •••••••••••••••••• As 2013 dawns, what is new at the Tulsa Port of Catoosa? Any new tenants, equipment, or infrastructure to let the folks know about? We are excited about 2013. Last year, the Port set a tonnage record: 2.7 million tons of waterborne cargo. Our previous record was 2.4 million tons, reached in 1998. We expect that 2013 will be an excellent year for us also. Crude oil shipments helped us reach this record and will undoubtedly boost our numbers this year. The Tulsa Port of Catoosa was the recipient of a TIGER grant from the U.S. Department of Transportation in 2012. The resulting funds, a matching grant, will enable us to refurbish our main dock this year. We will be expanding its area by about 40%, giving us the ability to load or unload up to three barges at a time. We’ll also repair and improve our existing 200-ton overhead crane. In addition, we will also add another crane, a mobile unit, to assist with lifting of cargo. All of this will assist with helping our Port to become an even more valuable transportation asset for this region. Tell us about the alliance with the Avard Regional Rail Park Authority. What has taken place since the agreement late last summer? What are your short and long6

term expectations for joint ventures such as this? Our agreements with Avard and the Kansas Logistics Park in Newton, Kansas are just the beginning of what I think will become a series of mutually advantageous linkages. We are the most inland ice-free port in the country. Our service area extends far beyond northeast Oklahoma. Many products shipped from the Port directly reach western Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, the Dakotas, Colorado, and beyond. What we are now doing is making our waterway more accessible to those regions, and may even be able to

issue single on-board bills of lading for, as an example, grain coming from eastern Colorado, shipping on either truck, rail, or barge (once it reaches us) for further transfer to any destination in the world. In the meantime, the relationships we have already established have

been extremely productive for both sides, and these ties will continue to grow in the years to come. You are approaching 30 years as Port Director at the Tulsa Port of Catoosa. How have your facilities, and the industry overall, changed over that time? I have been at the Tulsa Port of Catoosa almost 40 years! It seems hard to believe, but it is true. When I arrived at the Port in 1973, there were only three industrial facilities here. Many people here and throughout the inland waterway system were simply unaware of the benefits and cost-savings in waterway transportation. How that has changed! There are 64 industries at this port now. Along the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas System, the total annual cargo averages more than eleven million tons. Just in the Oklahoma section alone of this waterway, more than 7,000 people are employed in the maritime business. The first shipment to the Port in 1971 was newsprint for the local evening paper. The list of commodities transported on this waterway, and others, has grown to include agricultural products, petroleum products, steel, project cargo such as heavy machinery, and many others too numerous to name. We are more aware than ever of the vital importance of our nation’s inland waterway system to the U.S. economy. We are also keenly aware that if more is not done to protect our waterways and the aging infrastructure along them, they could be lost forever. That would be an economic catastrophe of almost incalculable proportions. We can’t and will not let that happen. Longevity such as yours must provide a unique and wide-ranging perspective. Do you ever call on your experiences back in 2013 Issue I

“the good old days” to guide you through today’s challenges, or is that type of “oldtime knowledge” simply not applicable today? Everything I learned from my formative days - whether pleasant or unpleasant has been very useful throughout my life. I wasn’t a good student in school in my early years. So the real turning point in my life occurred when I turned 18 and joined the United States Navy. I was both excited and scared. Excited because I finally saw myself taking control of my life and yet scared to leave the security of my home and parents. During the next four years, I worked with and for some of our Nation’s finest military officers and sailors, including a Rear Admiral who awarded me a Special Commendation for my work as a member of his staff. I also graduated second in a class of 40 from a Navy school and within three years earned the rank of Petty Officer Second Class. I left the Navy anxious to attend college and better myself. Six years later, having earned a Masters Degree in Economics, I began my professional career. One that has been wonderful,

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fun, challenging and very rewarding. I have had the pleasure of working with and for talented business people – especially those who have served on our Port Authority Board. Their careful mentoring along with a talented and hard-working staff have helped me realize my goals as a developer and, hopefully, an effective manager. Brag on your management team and board a bit. Who are your shining stars? The Port has been blessed to have had, over the years, a very insightful and helpful Board of Directors who are all private business people. Their policy decisions have been instrumental in the growth of the Port. These decisions have enabled us to attract more industries and to handle an ever-growing list of diverse products that are shipped through our multi-modal transportation facility. I am proud of their accomplishments in developing a worldclass, 2,500 acre inland international seaport. Their dedication and commitment is evident by their missing very few Board meetings over the years. Our staff size is small, and each of us is called on to wear

a number of hats depending on the situation - be it vitally important or a mundane task. Our current staff is talented, resourceful, and efficient, and I am very pleased to be part of this hard-working and efficient team. How much longer do you plan to stay in the game? I have no immediate plans to retire. Instead, with the talented team we have, I am able to allow them, under the guidance of our superb Deputy Director, David Yarbrough, oversee much of the daily operations while I attempt to help develop and implement an action plan between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; the states of Arkansas and Oklahoma; shippers, ports, and terminals located along the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System to insure the continued maintenance, operation and development of our waterway. This effort is critical to our port/waterways future given the trend of fewer federal dollars being appropriated each year for civil works projects and for energy and water projects in general. IP


Alabama Closer to New Intermodal Facility T

he Alabama State Port Authority’s board of directors approved two measures that will bring the port’s new intermodal rail facility closer to reality. The board authorized expenditures for the construction, inspection and testing for a rail access bridge that will connect five Class I railroads and the Authority’s Terminal Railway to an Intermodal Container Transfer Facility (ICTF), a rail intermodal facility and the second leg of the Authority’s Choctaw Point intermodal program. The second measure extended Moffatt & Nichol’s engineering and program management through Fiscal Year 2013 for key components within the Authority’s Choctaw Point project. As approved, the Port Authority will let $11.5 million in contracts for the construction, inspection and testing of a rail access bridge into the intermodal rail facility. The ICTF will service import/export containerized cargoes moving through APM Terminals Mobile as well as domestic containerized cargoes from regional manufacturers. “The ICTF program is critical to servicing our regional market shippers, who have to rail their containerized freight longer distances at higher costs,” said James K. Lyons,

director and chief executive for the Port Authority. “With this project, we can alleviate time and cost pressures on our customers, expand the container terminal’s natural market reach and provide an intermodal ramp for domestic shipments.” The Port Authority’s ICTF site is currently undergoing approximately $4 million in site stabilization work and the project had also received in 2012 a $12 million U.S. Department of Transportation TIGER grant to construct Phase I of the intermodal rail facility by mid-2014. The ICTF Phase I project was calculated by Martin Associates to create over three hundred direct and indirect jobs and generate over $7.4 million in state and local revenue and tax impacts. Phase I of the ICTF is expected to be completed by 2015. The second measure approved by the Port Authority’s board authorized extending program management services for key components of the Choctaw Point projects, including the ICTF, site development work at APM Terminals Phase II container terminal expansion and the north tract of the affiliated logistics park. Bob Harris, Vice President of Environmental and Program Management, noted, “Moffatt and Nichol has provided excellent service on Choctaw Point since the program’s inception, and securing their services into these next phases of development is necessary to the program’s timely implementation.” IP 8

2013 Issue I

2013 Issue I


news & notes

In Praise of the Lock and Dam System By Dennis Wilmsmeyer, IRPT President


nfortunately, it seems in life that we sometimes are fighting an uphill battle. In the river industry, we are fighting that uphill battle every day. We all know the cost effectiveness of barges and that a 15-barge tow carries the same amount of product as 225 rail cars or nearly 1,000 trucks in a far safer and less polluting manner. We certainly have the safest, most cost-effective and least polluting transportation mode, and we proudly share that with others. Why, then, is it so darn difficult to get any money directed toward maintaining or upgrading our locks and dams? Of all the articles written about the 2012 drought and the resulting low water in the Middle Mississippi River, I have yet to find one extolling the virtues of how the Lock and Dam System on the Upper Mississippi River saved the day. And it certainly did. The general public forgets that the


whole reason the Lock and Dam System was constructed between St. Louis and Minneapolis was to create the 9-foot navigation channel to allow year-round movement of goods via water. It took “low water conditions” out of the equation that grounded boats for weeks or months waiting for rains or snow melt. It created a viable and reliable transportation system. That which Congress authorized in the 1930s and the Corps constructed over the next 15-20 years was an incredible feat. Trying to replicate it today isn’t even within our realm of imagination: A total of 28-plus new locks and dams allowing navigation to continue on the Upper Mississippi River during the worst of droughts. The unintended recipient of the system this time was the Middle Mississippi, from St. Louis (just below the last lock) to Cairo, IL, at the mouth of the Ohio River. The Lock and Dam System, because of

its design for holding back water, slowly metered out water to the Middle Mississippi River all last summer. Similar to a slow-draining bathtub, the locks and dams made the Middle Mississippi River navigable. Without them, and without exaggeration, a completely free-flowing river would have been shut down from Minneapolis to Cairo back in August. Today, there is a 17-foot difference in the height of the water north of Locks #27 (the last lock on the river) as opposed to the free-flowing River on the other side of it. Foresight decades ago by the Corps of Engineers got us here. Determination and resolve by the river industry will be necessary to ensure our locks and dams are maintained and our transportation system remains viable and reliable for decades to come. We must continue our uphill fight. IP

2013 Issue I

Harley Marine Awards US Fab Contract For New Alaskan Deck Barge


S Fab, a Vigor Industrial company, will begin construction on a 250’x70’x15’8” deck barge for Harley Marine Services at Vigor’s Swan Island shipyard in Portland, Oregon. This purpose-built barge was designed by Jensen Maritime Consultants to transport a wide variety of cargo between Dutch Harbor and Akutan, Alaska with up to 3 runs per week. “Having the ability to collaborate with Jensen and Harley during the initial production design for this barge, will allow us to have maximum efficiency during construction,” said Bryan Nichols, Sales Manager at Vigor Industrial. “We were able to combine shipbuilding best practices with Jensen’s considerable design expertise and Harley’s requirements to finalize a cost effective, buildable design with quick turnaround.” The barge, which will be named Iliuliuk Bay, an Aleut name meaning big island, is designed to house a 230 ton lift capacity Manitowoc 4100 crawler crane. The vessels’ unique design features both D-rings to secure containers up to three high as well as eight lashing bars running fore and aft for other cargo such as heavy construction machinery or general equipment. “We needed a workhorse to replace our existing barge,” said Jim Weimer, General Manager of Alaska based Pacific Coast Maritime, a subsidiary of Harley Marine Services. “Having the ability to easily switch back and forth between containers and other cargo will help Harley Marine continue to provide quality and timely marine services to our customers.” Harley Marine Services is a leading provider of marine transportation services in the United States, with operations along the West Coast (including Alaska), New York Harbor and the US Gulf Coast. Vigor Industrial is a leader in the shipbuilding and ship repair industry with seven facilities in Oregon, Washington and Alaska. IP 2013 Issue I


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Inland barge transportation has the lowest carbon footprint of the other major modes. Moving identical amounts of cargo by rail generates 30% more carbon dioxide than by barge, and 1,000% more emissions by trucks than by barge. Learn more at

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2013 Issue I

Transportation Secretary LaHood Stepping Down


ransportation Secretary Ray LaHood, the only Republican still left in President Barack Obama’s first-term cabinet, announced plans to leave the Obama administration. The former congressman from Illinois told The Associated Press that he will remain at the department until his successor is confirmed. LaHood has helped the Obama administration steer through a number of safety measures and highway projects during the past four years. He has been a staunch ally of the inland waterway system, and his record has included steps to curb distracted driving, promote high-speed rail projects, and improve roads and bridges. LaHood says he will not run for public office in his home state of Illinois, saying he believes “you should go out while they’re applauding.” American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials Executive Director John Horsley commended LaHood for his leadership during the past four years. “We at AASHTO applaud U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood for four years of dedicated leadership, especially on safety,” Horsley said. “On his watch highway fatalities have dropped by about 5,000 deaths per year. Distracted driving is a national priority today because of his personal zeal. He also helped states create thousands of jobs through investments in highways, transit, and high speed rail. The Secretary’s announcement that he plans to step-down from his position comes at a crucial time for the industry. AASHTO looks forward to continuing to work with Secretary LaHood and his successor to fully implement the reforms included in MAP-21 and to identify a long-term, sustainable funding source for our nation’s transportation system. It has been a pleasure working with Secretary LaHood and we wish him well.” Transportation Trades Department, AFL-CIO (TTD) President Edward Wytkind issued the following statement:: “Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood’s departure from the President’s Cabinet is a loss for the nation as we strive to address America’s mounting passenger and freight transportation needs. “Secretary LaHood has been a forceful advocate for a safe and modern transportation system. He oversaw a historic $48 billion transportation economic stimulus program that created or saved hundreds of thousands of jobs. He sent a clear message that our economic recovery will stall if we failed to repair, upgrade and expand our battered transportation infrastructure and boost domestic transportation manufacturing. And he implemented major policy initiatives that will spur innovation and save lives. “On a personal note, I have known Secretary LaHood for almost 20 years. He has always sought our views and collaborated with us. His door is always open whether you are a Republican or Democratic, or if you advocate for labor or management. That is a rare quality seen today in Washington. His greatest legacy may actually turn out to be his ability to put passion and principle over politics. “We applaud Secretary LaHood for his service to this Administration and look forward to partnering with him again in the future on the critical transportation challenges that lie ahead.” IP 2013 Issue I


Mt.Vernon Barge Adds Second Full-Size Dry Dock


new full-size, full-service dry dock is the latest addition to the array of services and capabilities of Mt. Vernon Barge Service at ORM 828 in the Port of Indiana-Mt. Vernon. In conjunction with its existing dry dock, the facility gives Mt. Vernon Barge the only two full-size, full-service dry docks on the Ohio River between Paducah and Louisville – a 230-mile stretch with a great deal of barge and boat activity. The new conventionally designed, floating dry dock is an all-steel, wing walled configuration with 2200-ton lifting capacity. With overall hull dimensions of 160’ x 70’ x 8’ (62’ between wing walls), it is large enough for super jumbo barges or line boats. It is conveniently located in the Mt. Vernon Barge Service complex right next to its barge cleaning, cover repair and shingling capabilities and vast fleeting capacity. Mt. Vernon Barge Service is a member of the Transmodal Performance Group of companies. You can learn more at IP 14

2013 Issue I

NWC’s Larson Urges Action on WRDA E

NWC President and CEO Amy W. Larson, Esq., shares her recent testimony before the US Senate Committee of Environment and Public Works’ hearing on the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) 2012 discussion draft, which is being used as the framework to develop WRDA 2013

stablished in 1960, the National Waterways Conference is the only national organization to advocate in favor of national policy and laws that recognize the vital importance of America’s water resources infrastructure to our nation’s well-being and quality of life. Supporting a sound balance between economic and human needs and environmental and ecological considerations, our mission is to effect common sense policies and programs, recognizing the public value of our nation’s water resources and their contribution to public safety, a competitive economy, national security, environmental quality and energy conservation. Conference membership is comprised of the full spectrum of water resources stakeholders, including flood control associations, levee boards, waterways shippers and carriers, industry and regional associations, port authorities, shipyards, dredging contractors, regional water supply districts, engineering consultants, and state and local governments. In that regard, our membership is keenly interested in the enactment of comprehensive water resources legislation and we look forward to working with the Committee as we move forward in this process. As this Committee well knows, reliable, well-maintained water resources infrastructure is fundamental to America’s economic and environmental well-being, and is essential to maintaining our nation’s competitive position within the global economy. Our water resources infrastructure provides life-saving flood control, abundant water supplies, shore protection, water-based recreation, environmental restoration, and hydropower production, essential to our economic well-being. Moreover, waterways transportation is the safest, most energy-efficient and environmentally sound mode of transportation. With that in mind, I would like to offer a general, over-arching comment on the draft legislation, before addressing specific provisions. It would appear that the drafting of various provisions throughout the bill has been hampered by the moratorium on earmarks. While efforts in Congress to eliminate wasteful spending are laudable, and especially important given today’s fiscal challenges, deferring to the Executive Branch complete decision-making as to which projects should be authorized or receive funding, how much (if any) funding should be allotted to each, and all related priority decisions, has resulted in the stoppage or delay of critical projects. Moreover, the Administration’s priorities, as articulated in the budget, have not been established through an open, deliberative process, in contrast to the open process used by this Committee in developing past WRDAs. Projects such as those undertaken by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers are different from other Federal programs in several respects: each project is formulated separately to address a separate and discrete problem; projects are individually considered and recommended by the Administration and are authorized separately by the Congress based on the benefits accruing from each one; each project comprises a separate and distinct Federal investment decision generally independent of other projects and is, therefore, subject to individual appropriations; and, each project also comprises a separate and distinct non-Federal investment decision since non-Federal sponsors agree to pay significant portions of project costs. It is important to note that water resources projects are scrutinized, arguably, to a greater extent than any other capital investment program in the government through highly detailed studies. Proposed projects are subjected to comprehensive analyses using merit-based criteria, an integral component of which includes extensive public involvement wherein public input is widely sought and incorporated at frequent intervals. The Water Resources Development Act of 1986 imposed significant increases in non-Federal cost-sharing and other items of local cooperation, and the 1996 WRDA increased these non-Federal cost-sharing responsibilities still further. The water resources project approval process was strengthened in WRDA 07 through a series of reforms, including the requirement that each project be subjected to an external independent peer review. Historically, Congress authorizes projects that meet very rigorous tests, specifically, those that survive very detailed analyses and which non-Federal governments support through contributions of substantial shares of project costs. These decisions have been made in a collaborative manner, subject to a consultative, deliberative process, involving all stakeholders – and their representatives. We would respectfully suggest that this Committee, by means of its open and deliberative process, and whose members have the benefit of first-hand knowledge of the importance of particular projects to their states, is the appropriate forum in which to make these major investment decisions, and we would encourage the Congress to reconsider how this country invests in the nation’s water resources infrastructure. Analysis of the Discussion Draft We appreciate the opportunity to offer these initial comments on the draft legislation. Given the complexity of the draft, particularly the numerous policy reforms in Title II, my testimony first looks at major program proposals, and then offers some preliminary comments on Title II at the end. We


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look forward to working with the Committee to provide additional input as it works to refine this legislation. Title 1 As previously mentioned, we believe that the Congress is best suited to make the individual, discrete investment decisions regarding our nation’s water resources. Title IV would similarly grant to the Secretary the discretion whether to initiate water resources studies. We believe it is in the best interest of the nation that these decisions be made in the open and transparent legislative process that has traditionally been used in the development of water resources legislation. Title VI – Levee Safety Title VI of the bill, a furtherance of the Levee Safety Act passed by Congress as part of the 2007 WRDA, would begin the actual establishment of a comprehensive levee safety program. This part of the Chairman’s discussion draft also takes into account draft recommendations made to Congress by the National Committee on Levee Safety in 2009. The importance of well-built and well-maintained levees cannot be understated. Levees are both abundant and integral to economic development and flood risk reduction in hundreds of large and small communities, industrial zones, urban areas, agricultural regions, and vitally strategic zones around the United States. The National Committee on Levee Safety estimates that tens of millions of people live and work in leveed areas. By some estimates, nearly 50 percent of Americans live in counties with levees or related flood protection infrastructure. Corps of Engineers’ levee systems provide a 6:1 return ratio on flood damages prevented compared to initial costs, and the Mississippi River and Tributaries system provides a 34:1 return on investment ratio. Levees also serve an important role in our nation’s energy framework by protecting power plant facilities, as well as the oil, gas and petrochemical industries along the Texas and Louisiana Gulf coast and the agri-business economy throughout California’s Central Valley, the Mississippi Delta Region and the Midwest. Well-conceived levees, floodwalls and appurtenant infrastructure protect fire and police departments, hospitals, and schools. They are critical to the viability of our overall public infrastructure network, protecting other infrastructure, including roads, bridges, railroads, port facilities and wastewater treatment plants. 2013 Issue I

Levee infrastructure, like our aviation, water and wastewater, transit, dams and waterways transport, is in need of attention. Effective and improved management of levees is necessary for the continued enjoyment of the economic, societal and cultural benefits yielded by this public works investment. For that reason, we applaud the Chairman for including a levee safety proposal to begin a critical public dialogue. As the legislation calls for, a one-time inventory and inspection of all levees identified in the national levee database is a critical first step to the establishment of a successful levee safety program. The baseline information garnered from such an inventory, including much of the nonfederal stock of levees, should then be included and maintained in an expanded national levee database in order that critical safety issues, true costs of good levee stewardship, and the state of individual levees can inform priorities and provide data for needed assessments and decisionmaking. The draft stipulates that the states and Indian tribes are uniquely positioned to oversee, coordinate and regulate local and regional levee systems. Our organization and many others are still thinking through delegated authority, but we would recommend that any levee safety guidelines developed pursuant to the legislation must preserve state and local government prerogatives, so that such guidelines could properly serve as a “guide” for states, but the decisions on whether to adopt and implement should be left to the discretion of the states. Further, the provisions requiring the Secretary to establish such guidelines should be amended to require that they be developed consistent with the public notice and due process requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act. Given that participation in the grant program to be established under this title calls for adherence to the guidelines, principles of fairness would dictate that those guidelines be developed through an open and transparent process. Given the critical importance of levees throughout the country, we support the appointment of an administrator of the levee safety program, within the Corps of Engineers, whose sole duty is the management of that program. We also appreciate the intent behind the creation of the National Levee Safety Advisory Board to provide advice on consistent approaches to levee safety, to monitor levee safety and to assess the effectiveness of the national

program. However, given the fiscal constraints facing the nation, we believe it would be premature to stand up the Board before completion of the inventory and inspection of the nation’s levees. The results of the inspection, which will increase our understanding of levee system locations, conditions, and the national flood risk situation, could then be used to determine whether such a Board is necessary, and if so, to help frame and focus its work. The draft calls for the Comptroller General to prepare a report on the possibilities for alignment of Federal programs to provide incentives and “disincentives” to promote shared responsibility for levee safety and to encourage the development of strong levee safety programs. While we support efforts to enhance levee safety, we are concerned about what possible “disincentives” might be contemplated by this directive. Water resource development for transportation, manufacturing, irrigation, and recreation has always been a part of this country’s heritage and will continue to be for future generations. We cannot penalize people who live in communities near the water or behind levees. Rather, we should fully identify and assess the

problems through completion of the inventory discussed above, and then work through an open, informed, systematic approach to bring deficient flood control structures to a level of protection we can live with and afford. The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) reauthorization, enacted over the summer as a part of this committee’s MAP-21 transportation reauthorization, was stripped of a provision that would have mandated flood insurance purchase and imposed land use restrictions for all property owners behind levees and dams, regardless of their federal rating. Our organization worked closely with numerous members of the Senate, including members of this committee, to eliminate this arbitrary and punitive “residual risk” provision. It should not be the policy of the United States to discourage existing and future economic activity in areas protected by sound levees, dams and other flood control infrastructure. Many of our Nation’s most fertile lands and economically strategic assets lie in areas now protected by well-conceived levees and dams. Rather than identify disincentives that would result in significant economic harm, we would instead suggest the


NWC’s Larson Urges Action on WRDA adoption of incentivized approaches to provide direct assistance and conditional flexibility to “good actor” communities who are diligently working to bring their deficient levees into compliance with changed Federal requirements. The Army Corps’ “SWIF” program to allow non-federal sponsors the opportunity to maintain PL 84-99 eligibility, for example, is the sort of post-Katrina transitioning that we are convinced works best to protect lives, property, and federal taxpayer interests. We understand that the National Levee Issues Alliance has provided committee staff with draft language to facilitate these incentivized approaches and we would support this kind of initiative. Finally, the theme of “shared responsibility” between the Federal, state and local governments is threaded through the discussion draft. We share this sentiment, but believe that for hundreds of leveed areas and millions of Americans, “shared

responsibility” must mean more than just increased government oversight and standard-setting for levees. It must also include shared responsibility for the financing of actual infrastructure improvements in support of comprehensive flood safety. Title VII – Inland Waterways Title VII of the draft legislation sets forth various provisions designed to improve the reliability of the inland waterways to ensure our nation’s river system continues to operate as an affordable, reliable, energy-efficient and environmentally friendly mode of transport. Our inland waterways serve as the backbone of the nation’s transportation system, ensuring domestic and international trade opportunities, and low-cost, environmentally sound movement of goods. More than 600 million tons of cargo – including agricultural products, petroleum, chemi-

cals, coal, iron, steel, and other raw materials – moves on the waterways at a cost that is typically 2 to 3 times lower than other modes of transportation, translating into an annual savings of $7 billion for America’s economy. A typical 15-barge tow carries the equivalent of 216 rail cars or 1,050 large semi tractor-trailer trucks, and generates fewer emissions than the other modes. As this Committee knows, ensuring the reliability of our inland waterways is essential to maintaining the nation’s economic and environmental well-being and competitive position in the global economy. To that end, we generally support the proposed reforms to the project delivery process applicable to the construction and major rehabilitation of the nation’s aging locks and dams, based upon the Capital Development Plan endorsed by the Inland Waterways Users Board. The details of many of the proposed reforms would need to be further clarified and refined, including what kind of formal training and certification would be required for project managers, on what basis the Chief of Engineers would certify project managers, and the duties and responsibilities of the users board representative appointed to serve on a project development team. We would recommend that the Secretary be directed to consult with the Users Board in implementing these requirements. We would also recommend that the required report on the study, design or construction of navigation projects be semi-annually rather than quarterly, given the various provisions elsewhere in the draft legislation concerning both the need to streamline the planning and project delivery process along with the possible imposition of additional burdens prolonging the process. Integral to the project delivery reforms is the need to ensure sufficient funding for these important projects. While a proposal to increase the revenue in the Inland Waterways Trust Fund is not considered in the draft legislation, we would encourage this Committee, along with the Finance Committee and the Senate as a whole, to give careful consideration to other proposals under development to enact a long-term funding solution to ensure the continued reliability of the nation’s inland waterways. Revitalization of the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, together with the reforms to the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund discussed below, would position America’s ports and waterways to take advantage of the tremendous opportunities offered by the Panama Canal Expansion. Title VIII – Harbor Maintenance Title VIII of the draft addresses harbor maintenance. As this Committee knows, the nation’s ports and harbors are critical components of our trans-


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portation infrastructure, and regular maintenance is required to ensure their efficient use. The Harbor Maintenance Tax is intended for that specific purpose, and annual revenues from the tax are generally about $1.5 billion annually. However, only about $800 million – half of the revenue collected – is used for its intended purpose. As a consequence, the nearly 1,000 federal ports and harbors have not been adequately maintained, and indeed, those ports that handle nearly 90 percent of commercial traffic are dredged to their authorized depths and widths only 35 percent of the time. This chronic failure to provide sufficient funding has resulted in channels getting narrower and shallower due to inadequate dredging, which has resulted in ships having to light-load, increasing the cost of shipping, the risk of vessel groundings, collisions, and pollution incidents. With 13 million jobs and $4 trillion in economic activity dependent on these ports and harbors, we cannot let them fall into further disrepair. Because waterborne transportation is often the least expensive means of transporting vital commodities and goods, maintaining this essential infrastructure bolsters our economic competitiveness and strengthens the economy. We strongly support legislation that would ensure that the revenues collected into the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund are used for their intended purposes. We agree that the proper expenditure of such receipts should not result in a reduction in funding for other projects and programs in the Corps of Engineers’ civil works program. We would further caution against any expansion of the activities that would be eligible for funding under this proposal until such time as there is a mechanism that ensures that the revenues collected will be used for the intended purposes. Otherwise, simply shifting the already scarce resources in a chronically underfunded program would only serve to further undermine the stability of our critical water resources infrastructure. The draft Senate legislation we were asked to review includes a conditional guarantee regarding HMTF spending, but it is not clear how this language would work.

would undermine the planning process rather than improve it. Our non-Federal sponsors are exploring various alternatives that may help to streamline the planning process, while still producing a report that is sufficient to stand up to legal, environmental and economic challenges. Fundamentally, in order to effectuate meaningful reforms, the Corps must be relieved of the burden of examining any issue or permutation that could possibly arise, regardless of how realistic or unrealistic. This would help curtail the excessive data collection and analysis that have significantly hampered the process. These threshold, and systemic reforms, must be implemented in order for other refinements to the process, including for example, eliminating duplication during the reconnaissance and feasibility phases, to be successful. Given the significant focus on reforming

the planning and project delivery processes, I would like to highlight some of the proposed policy reforms which we are concerned could add requirements to both the project justification and project implementation processes, resulting in additional cost and delay. For instance, Section 2002 would add a requirement for mitigation for ecological resources, including terrestrial and aquatic resources. Section 2003 would extend by 5 years the independent peer review provisions contained in WRDA 2007 and impose additional reporting requirements on the Chief of Engineers, and Section 2004 would modify the safety assurance review provisions of WRDA 2007. Both of these provisions could impose additional cost and time on Corps’ feasibility studies, without increasing their efficiency. Section 2012, Dam Optimization, grants to the Secretary very broad authority to undertake any

Title II , Section 2016, Project Acceleration We appreciate the Committee’s concerns about the Corps’ planning process in Section 2016, Project Acceleration. Many of our members are local sponsors who have been frustrated with increased costs and delays in the completion of feasibility studies. We applaud the Corps’ efforts to streamline this process through its “3x3x3” program, (feasibility studies completed in no more than 3 years, at a cost of no more than $3 million, and three levels of engagement). We would also recommend, as the Corps continues to refine its planning process, that it develop additional guidance on what elements can be eliminated from the current process and still produce a valuable study, because simply mandating a shorter time-frame and a lower cost will not reform the process. In that regard, we would be concerned that imposing a requirement to complete studies within three years irrespective of the availability of funds, previous statutory requirements, new requirements in this legislation, and without consideration of the appropriate scope of a study (including economic, environmental and engineering requirements), 2013 Issue I


NWC’s Larson Urges Action on WRDA activity deemed necessary to increase efficiency of dam operations and maintenance. This authority would include undertaking any activity related to the authorized project purposes, as well as environmental protection and restoration activities for authorized projects and other related project benefits. As a general principle, we would suggest that this provision should establish a clear policy of allocating total storage of a reservoir to the purposes that result in highest and best use. Further, any reallocation would provide for compensation for adversely affected parties. The role of the non-Federal sponsors is not included in this provision, and we would recommend an amendment to require that any action under this section may occur only after consultation with the non-Federal sponsors. We would also suggest that the section be amended to clarify whether the Secretary would be granted authority to carry out “any” activity (section b(1)) or only those enumerated in section b(2). The applicable reporting requirements would need similar clarification. Section 2013, Implementation of Biological Opinions, also grants to the Secretary broad authority to carry out any activity deemed necessary to comply with a biological opinion “that directly relates to impacts from an authorized water resources project.”


We are concerned that this provision could be interpreted as significantly expanding the Corps’ authority in ways that are beyond, or even contrary to, the Corps’ mission. For example, does this provision intend that the Endangered Species Act provides supplemental statutory authority? Or does the ESA only authorize whatever conservation measures are possible within the authority granted by an agency’s organic statutes? NWC looks forward to working with the Committee as it is moves this bill forward. FOLLOW-UP QUESTIONS FROM SENATORs BOXER and inhofe After the hearing, Senator Barbara Boxer and Senator James Inhofe had several follow-up questions for Amy Larson. Here is that exchange. In your testimony, you discuss the significant and careful review that projects undergo in development of a Chief’s Report. Can you elaborate on the process and criteria for a project with a completed Chief’s Report? The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ (USACE) planning process, set forth in its Planning Guidance Notebook, ER 1105-2-100, is based upon the Principles and Guidelines (P&G) promulgated in 1983, along with numerous laws applicable to the Corps’ missions and the Civil Works program. The P&G were set forth to provide for the formulation of reasonable plans responsive to National, state and local concerns.

The Principles and Guidelines state that the Federal objective of water and related land resources planning is to contribute to national economic development consistent with protecting the Nation’s environment, in accordance with national environmental statutes, applicable executive orders, and other Federal planning requirements. In general, the plans recommended for implementation are to reasonably maximize net national benefits. The Planning Notebook sets forth a six-step process established in the P&G to provide for a structured approach to problem solving, utilizing a rational framework for sound decision making: Step 1 - Identifying problems and opportunities Step 2 - Forecasting conditions Step 3 - Formulating alternative plans Step 4 - Evaluating alternative plans Step 5 - Comparing alternative plans Step 6 - Selecting a plan. The six steps are explained in great detail in the Planning Notebook. On top of the requirements contained therein, Corps’ studies are also subject to an extensive systematic review process. This includes internal reviews, including quality control and agency technical reviews; external reviews, including National Environmental Policy Act reviews, independent external peer reviews, and state and agency reviews; and other policy and legal reviews. Overall, the process is extraordinarily rigorous and thorough, indeed to a much greater degree than is found in any other example of infrastructure planning. However, the process has grown to

2013 Issue I

being overly burdensome, resulting in it becoming impracticable. For instance, current requirements have accreted due to the growth of law and policy, as a result of legal and technical challenges, and with individual requirements added to address some sort of shortcoming identified in a previous project. Similarly, the extensive reviews can be quite costly and time-consuming. For example, the independent external peer reviews, initiated by Section 2034 of WRDA 07, may include economic and environmental assumptions and projections, project evaluation data, economic analyses, environmental analyses, engineering analyses, formulation of alternative plans, methods for integrating risk and uncertainty, models used in evaluation of economic or environmental impacts of proposed projects, and any biological opinions of the project study. A report containing the recommendations of the Chief of Engineers is completed only after the study and review processes are completed, comments have been resolved to the extent possible and the Chief has made a determination on the merits of the proposed project after considering all available input. Would you be confident that the 18 projects with completed Chief’s Reports and referred to Congress by the Assistant Secretary of the Army have been thoroughly reviewed and worthy of being authorized? Yes, I am very confident that all 18 projects with positive recommendations on Chief’ Reports are worthy investments for the Nation. In addition

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to the Chief’s Reports, there may, in all likelihood, be other worthy projects that Congress may want to consider as well. The Congress has a vital role to play in these important – and independent – investment decisions and should assure that the decisions are reached through an open and inclusive process where the needs and priorities of all are considered. In your testimony you support the creation of the National Levee Safety Program. Can you expand on the couple of features you feel will be most important to starting this new program? Our organization is amenable to the idea, broadly, that if state governments want USACE to partner with their localities to strengthen flood damage reduction capability, then the states will have to develop and implement levee safety programs that meet certain minimum guidelines. Regional circumstances and variations will have to be considered as this concept advances. In any case, the legislation must guarantee that the program guidelines are: (1) the product of co-equal input from Federal and non-Federal representatives; (2) voluntary at the State level; and (3) developed consistent with the public notice and due process requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act. Similar to other public safety aspects of most law enforcement activities in the United States, the basic life and limb safety burden is most appropriately handled at the state and local levels. Surveillance, evacuations, land use practices, building codes, public outreach, and other risk reduction measures should be left and/or

clarified in the bill as state and local domain. While the Federal sponsor does have an interest and responsibility for life safety concerns, its primary consideration has been and should continue to be based on economic return (National Economic Development benefits). To the degree that we can more explicitly state, in law and policy, what the clear Federal, state, and local roles are regarding flood damage reduction and flood safety, the better off we will be. By using future WRDA legislation to more clearly delineate Federal and non-Federal risk reduction responsibilities, we would bring many critical project delivery and operational benefits to the forefront. Mandatory national levee safety standards are neither desirable nor practicable. The case-by-case variables are just too great, in our estimation, for any effective development and application of top-down regulations. Universal standard setting will have a chilling and costly impact on an already overburdened USACE project delivery process. The current controversy over USACE levee vegetation management, dealt with in another part of the Chairman’s Discussion Draft, is instructive on the difficulties associated with overly prescriptive national standard-setting in this policy area. Peer-reviewed models for levee safety programs, however, can serve to shore-up life safety risk concerns by informing case-bycase design and maintenance guidelines with “best practices” knowledge while cost-effectively reaffirming responsibility for life and limb safety at the appropriate non-Federal levels. Voluntary adoption and implementation


NWC’s Larson Urges Action on WRDA of effective, peer-reviewed state levee safety programs must be premised upon the inclusion of cost-shared levee project improvement and rehabilitation funding for Federal program projects, including prioritized remedial design and construction modifications at federally built projects. Since 2009, USACE has completed a substantial portion of its nationwide Inspection/ Inventory for USACE program levees, and late last year the agency organized much of this field data within the National Levee Database authorized by the 2007 WRDA. Both initiatives, appropriately, have been focused, first, on the Federal program levees. Non-Federal levees, for the most part, are unstudied and uncharacterized at this stage and, thus, should not be covered by legislative directives at this time. Baseline information on these non-Federal levees would be obtained from the Inspection/Inventory called for in the Discussion Draft, after which time it would make more sense to contemplate their inclusion in a comprehensive Levee Safety Program. Finally, we would be concerned about overly summarized project rating tools contemplated under the Hazard Potential Classification System (and related USACE Levee Safety Classification System (L-SAC)). The goal of categorizing “worst first” to prioritize national needs and funding decisions is an understandable public policy aim, but it isn’t clear to us that the L-SAC process is doing a good job on that goal. However, public dissemination of this summary, potentially arbitrary data could present extraordinary, unintended economic challenges at the local level. L-SAC type summary ratings have


the potential to strike widespread blows against regional property values, local revenue collection, job creation, area reinvestment, and overall regional economic outputs. The draft bill includes provisions for helping ensure the complete expenditures of the HMTF. Can you explain why full spending of the HMTF is necessary and important to our national commerce? We appreciate Chairman Boxer’s recognition of the importance of fully spending the revenues from the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund for their intended purposes. However, we do not agree that the provisions in the discussion draft would ensure those expenditures. While the text of subsection 8002(a) is consistent with the text of S.412, the Harbor Maintenance Act, the text of subsection 8002(b) does not include the point of order that would enforce the guarantee in paragraph 8002(b) (1). Without the point of order, that guarantee is not enforceable in the House or the Senate. As stated in my testimony, we agree that the proper expenditure of receipts from the HMTF should not result in a reduction of funding for other projects and programs in the Corps’ civil works program. We believe that overall investments in our nation’s water resources infrastructure are woefully inadequate. To that end, we are concerned that paragraph 8002 appears to the casual reader to address the inadequate funding of harbor maintenance programs, but it actually does not fix the problem. Similarly, it is not clear how paragraph 8002(b) (2) as drafted would operate. It is not clear

whether the baseline for determining whether the amount of appropriations in question is a reduction compared to the previous fiscal year’s appropriation or the Administration’s request for the fiscal year in question. Also, it does not specify who would be empowered to make a determination of whether a reduction in appropriations for such programs was the result of an increase in appropriations from the HMTF or due to another reason. If the Administration forwarded to the Congress an annual budget request that would increase appropriations from the HMTF while slightly decreasing total non-HMTF funding from the previous fiscal year and explained that such reduction is based on other factors, would that render paragraph 8002(b)(2) inoperative? Subsection 8003(a) of the draft bill would expand the authorized uses of HMTF revenue to include 100% of the cost of maintaining navigation channel depth greater than 45 feet, but not greater than 50 feet. Subsection 8003(b) of the draft bill would authorize under certain circumstances the HMTF to reimburse the costs of maintaining harbor berths and disposing of associated dredged materials. Currently, both of these costs would be paid for by the nonfederal interest. It is difficult to determine how great an additional demand on the HMTF these provisions would impose. Given that there is a tremendous backlog of unmet currently authorized harbor maintenance needs, we cannot support legislation expanding the authorized uses of the HMTF that does not also effectively ensure that annual HMTF revenues are fully provided to the Army Corps of Engineers for currently authorized purposes. Section 2018 appears to be targeted at

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harbor deepening projects that are completed using non-federal funds and it is reasonable to assume that some nonfederal interests would do so due to inadequate federal funding of authorized Army Corps of Engineers navigation construction projects. Since the operations and maintenance of such deepened channels would otherwise be reimbursed with HMTF revenue, we have no objection to this provision. To understand why full spending of the HMTF is necessary and important to our national commerce, it is important to recognize that our ports and harbors are gateways to domestic and international trade, connecting the United States to the world. U.S. ports and harbors handle more than 2.5 billion tons of domestic and international trade annually. These ports are responsible for moving more than 99 percent of the country’s overseas cargo, and that volume is projected to double within the next 15 years. With the expansion of the Panama Canal in 2015, many of our ports will realize substantial volume growth. In 2007, there were 13.3 million port-related jobs – 9% of all jobs in the US – that accounted for $649 billion in personal income. A $1 billion increase in exports creates an estimated 15,000 new jobs. The navigation channels maintained by the Army Corps of Engineers allow for the most efficient transportation of these goods and help keep U.S. exports competitive in the world market. The vast majority of U.S. harbors and navigation channels experience a loss of channel depth due to deposits of silt that must be removed by maintenance dredging that is reimbursed by the HMTF. Failure to keep up with this maintenance dredging results in a loss of channel depth, light loading of large cargo vessels, lost competitiveness of U.S. ports and exports, and loss of jobs. Full expenditure of the HMTF supports to the Administration’s We Can’t Wait initiative, a government-wide effort to streamline the permitting and review process for nationally and regionally significant infrastructure projects, under which 7 projects at 5 major ports were expedited earlier this year. Post-Panamax vessels today make up 16 percent of the world’s container fleet, but account for 45 percent of the fleet’s capacity. Those numbers are projected to grow significantly over the next 20 years, and full expenditure of HMTF will be critical to ensure that the nation’s ports are prepared to accommodate those new vessels. In addition, the National Export Initiative, which strives to increase oversees trading opportunities for U.S. businesses, will benefit from better maintained ports and harbors. Full expenditure of the HMTF makes economic sense. What, if any, policy priorities or changes to current law that are important to your organization are not addressed in this draft? How would you suggest we modify the draft to reflect your concerns? We would urge the Congress to take this opportunity to rethink how our nation invests in its infrastructure. While efforts in Congress to eliminate wasteful spending are laudable, and especially important given today’s fiscal challenges, deferring to the Executive Branch complete 2013 Issue I

decision-making as to which projects should receive funding, how much (if any) funding should be allotted to each and all related priority decisions, has resulted in the stoppage or delay of critical projects. Moreover, the Administration’s priorities, as articulated in the budget, have not been established through an open, deliberative process. Federal water resources projects are different from other Federal programs, projects and activities in the following important ways: each project is formulated separately to address a separate and discrete problem; projects are separately analyzed, are recommended by the Executive Branch and are authorized and funded separately by the Congress based on the benefits accruing individually from each one; each project comprises a separate and distinct Federal investment decision generally independent of other projects and is, therefore, subject to individual appropriations; and, each project also comprises a separate and distinct non-Federal investment decision since non-Federal sponsors agree to pay significant portions of project costs. The Congress has a vital role to play in these important – and independent – investment decisions and should assure that the decisions are reached through an open and inclusive process where the needs and priorities of all are considered. Legislation that ensures the full expenditure of annual HMTF revenues for authorized purposes is a policy priority of NWC. Section 8002 of the draft bill does not adequately address this priority because it does not include any language enforcing the HMTF spending guarantee. Without the point of order, that guarantee is not enforceable in the House or the Senate. We recommend replacing paragraph 8002(b)(2) with the text of subsection (c) of S.412. Make Section 214 of the Water Resources Development Act of 2000 (P.L. 106-541) permanent. That provision allows the Secretary of the Army to accept funds from non-Federal public entities, like ports, to hire additional regulatory staff to expedite the permitting process. It not only reduces permit wait times for the funding entity, but for any individual or organization that makes an application with that District of the Corps. Section 214 authority, currently used by over 41 public agencies in 20 Corps districts, has allowed local governments to move forward with vital infrastructure and ecosystem restoration projects. Provide a dedicated funding stream for the nation’s small ports and harbors. With full expenditure of the HMTF, coastal ports may be eligible for funding. However, inland ports not under the HMTF program would not be included by full expenditure of the HMTF and need a dedicated funding stream to ensure their continued viability. In recent years, without Congressionally directed spending, some of these ports have paid for their own dredging, which comes with a variety of operational challenges; others have shut down for periods of time; and others expect to shut down permanently, closing down local industry.

I (Senator Inhofe) am pleased that the Chair included a Sense of the Congress on Project Acceleration. However, I would like to take this a step further and include legislative language. What does your organization recommend? In order to effectuate meaningful reforms to the planning and project delivery process, we would encourage the Committee to review, and eliminate as warranted, the numerous cumbersome legislative and policy requirements that have accumulated over the years, significantly increasing the cost and time of studies. Without a fundamental overhaul, designed to reduce the number of issues and alternatives that the Corps is required to study, there cannot be effective change. Two particularly important actions would be to streamline the NEPA compliance process and expand the ability of local sponsors to participate in the process. Similarly, we would suggest that the Committee consider new and/or modified policy reforms with an eye towards their impact on the planning process. We would be concerned that efforts to streamline the process would be thwarted by the implementation of new requirements. Coupled with the efforts to reform the planning process should be an extension and expansion of the provisions in Section 2003 of WRDA 2007 to simplify Project Partnership Agreements (PPAs) to make them easier to approve and execute. Some have suggested that the Civil Works Program needs to be transformed to ensure it continues to effectively and efficiently address the nation’s water resources challenges. Do you have any recommendations that the Committee can consider for this WRDA bill in order to lay a foundation for future changes to the Civil Works Program? We have been engaged with the Corps of Engineers on its “Civil Works Transformation” initiative, in furtherance of our mutual goals of ensuring a long-term robust water resources infrastructure program for the nation. We continue our collaborative efforts, including stakeholder outreach and communications. In terms of legislative provisions to support this transformation, we offer the following suggestions: • Authorize and implement only the highest priority investments: • Restore and reinforce the historic standard of the Chief’s Report as a principal basis for determining worthwhile investments. Projects meeting the economic, engineering and environmental tests leading to a Chief’s Report – and proceeding through “normal order” in the Congress – would not be considered earmarks. • Invite the Administration to indicate priorities for projects that would be included in the Act. • Set up a specific process for the Corps to report on anticipated 902 issues and for them to be considered as reauthorized without specific Congressional action • Limit the pace of authorizations by progress in reducing the backlog, and expand authorizations at a pace consistent with the reduction in the backlog • Create the opportunity for more dynamic Corps-State-and-Interstate partnerships for a contemporary reservoir management vision • Create public-partnerships • Provide for a pilot program for a variety of projects. IP 23

Industry Notebook Let us spread your message! Email your port, company, or group news to us at Member of Congress Janice Hahn (D-CA) and Ted Poe (R-TX) , co-founders and co-chairs of the bipartisan Congressional PORTS Caucus, requested that the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hold a hearing on the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund as the first step towards improving utilization of those funds. For years, the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund has built to a multi-billion dollar surplus—even as so many ports across the nation have suffered from lack of investment. Common sense says there is a better way to manage and spend the trust fund, but we have not yet done what we need to fix it. The bipartisan PORTS Caucus can find a way forward together on ports issues, and is meeting to discuss options to improve the utilization of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund later this month. U.S. Representative Cedric Richmond (LA-02), along with co-chair Michael G. Grimm (NY-11), announced the establishment of the Congressional Maritime Caucus. The Caucus will work to raise awareness among members of Congress on a broad range of maritime-related topics. “The maritime industry is the unsung hero of our nation’s economy,” said Rep. Richmond. “From Alaska to Puerto Rico, Louisiana to New York, every day this industry facilitates trade and delivers energy resources that support millions of jobs and pays billions in state and federal taxes every year. I also look forward to highlighting the role other industries play in supporting maritime commerce, be it in the fields of law, engineering, shipbuilding or insurance.” America’s ports are vital to the employment of 13.3 million workers nationwide. Today, international trade accounts for more than 25 percent of America’s gross domestic product. U.S. seaport activities generate more than $3.15 trillion in annual economic output, with $3.8 billion worth of goods moving in and out of seaports every day around the country. “The maritime industry is at the heart of New York City’s economic vitality – from our thriving shipping industry to the Staten Island Ferry,” said Rep. Grimm. “As the representative of Staten Island and Brooklyn, I am proud to have the New York Container Terminal in my district that employs hundreds of hard-working men and women. I am honored to co-chair the Congressional Maritime Caucus with Rep. Richmond, and look forward to working with him in support of issues that matter most to our nation’s maritime industry.” The maritime industry has played the vital role of

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connecting people, goods and information worldwide. Every day, the maritime industry facilitates trade and commerce which, in turn, creates jobs. It delivers energy resources, supports offshore energy exploration, dredges our waterways, secures our borders and supports our military. Onshore, the industry is supported by all manner of professionals in fields such as law, insurance, logistics, ship building and repair, security, environmental science, engineering, management and workforce training. The Congressional Maritime Caucus will function as a devoted ally of all components of the maritime industry and will work to raise awareness among members of Congress on a broad range of maritime-related topics. “I am confident that this Caucus will be a voice for the entire maritime industry, one that stresses how critical this industry is to sustaining our economic recovery. I’m proud to have Congressman Michael Grimm as a co-chair and I look forward to working with him to ensure that U.S. maritime policy meets the challenges of the 21st century,” Rep Richmond concluded. Robert “Rusty” Barkerding Jr. was sworn in as the newest member of the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans, Friday, Feb. 8. He joins the Board with 47 years of experience in the maritime industry and will serve a five-year term, succeeding Valerie S. Cahill. Barkerding is President and CEO of Admiral Security Services, a maritime-focused security firm that works in conjunction with the U.S. Government to provide armed guards to vessels and ports on the Lower Mississippi River in Louisiana and in ports in Mississippi, Alabama and Florida. Prior to Admiral Security, he enjoyed stellar careers as a member of the U.S. Navy submarine service and an active duty and a reserve member of the New Orleans Police Department. “Mr. Barkerding’s record of service, vast knowledge of the maritime industry and his steadfast support for the Port of New Orleans will serve the Board well,” said Gary LaGrange, Port President and CEO. “We are excited to welcome him aboard.” A graduate of Tulane University in New Orleans, Barkerding’s knowledge of the industry is rooted in his entrepreneurship and work history that spans from vessel operations to terminal operations and cargo movements. He has acted as a consultant and served in administrative capacities in U.S. Gulf of Mexico ports as well as ports in New York and New Jersey. “I am looking forward to working with my fellow board members, whom I have the utmost respect for, to improve the Port and cargo movements,” said Barkerding. Barkerding’s father, the late Robert R. Barkerding Sr. served as a member of the Board of Commissioners of the Port of New Orleans eventually becoming CEO of the Port before retiring in 1970. U.S. Rep. Bill Shuster, the new chairman of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure; Lt. Gen. Thomas Bostick, commanding general of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers; and W. Ralph Basham, a principle with Command Consulting Group in Washington, D.C., and former commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection and director of the U.S. Secret Service; will help round-out an already illustrious selection of speakers at the American Association of Port Authorities’ (AAPA) 2013 Spring Conference in

Washington, D.C., March 18-19. As part of AAPA’s Spring Conference program at The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel, U.S. Representatives Janice Hahn (D-CA) and Ted Poe (R-TX) will be honored as the association’s 2013 “Port Persons of the Year.” Other program speakers for this year’s event include U.S. Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (who chairs the Senate Environment & Public Works Subcommittee on Oversight); CSX Transportation Vice President Derrick Smith; Morgan Stanley Executive Director Ira Smelkinson; Fitch Ratings’ Senior Director Seth Lehman; William E. Craft, the U.S. Department of State’s deputy assistant secretary for trade policy and programs; and Marcus H. Sachs, Verizon Communications’ vice president for national security policy. The US Government is delivering on a key commitment under the US-Canada Beyond the Border Action Plan through the publication of a final rule in the Federal Register titled “Informal Entry Limit and Removal of a Formal Entry Requirement,” which will increase the value threshold for expedited customs clearance. The rule will increase the value thresholds to $2,500 for expedited customs clearance from the current levels of $2,000. Navis, a part of Cargotec Corporation and a global technology standard for managing the movement of cargo through terminals, announced that APM Terminals’ new state-of-the-art facility Maasvlakte II, located in Rotterdam, the Netherlands, has selected Navis SPARCS N4 as its terminal operating system of record. As part of the massive development project, APM Terminals Maasvlakte II will use SPARCS N4 to support critical operational productivity and efficiency with real-time execution systems at the terminal. TT Club, a leading insurance specialist in the global freight industry, reports that innovation in the logistics sector is on the rise. The insurer, which provides cargo, property and liability cover to freight forwarders and logistics companies, observes that the adoption of technological capabilities and tailored supply chain processes is proliferating. A long-term supporter of the British International Freight Association (BIFA) Awards, TT Club sponsored the 2012 European Logistics Award. TT Club’s Development Director for UK and Ireland, Brian Sullivan was part of the judging panel that employed a stringent vetting process to find the winner, Delamode International Logistics. “Many in the freight transport industry feel that pressure on rates from customers has shorn the operator of the necessary resource to deliver the added-value elements that distinguishes logistics from the straightforward ‘A to B’ transportation of freight. As a result of my own and the Club’s experience, I would contest this view,” comments Sullivan. TT Club is certainly seeing more extensive services being provided by its customers. Many companies that in the past offered traditional freight forwarding now take on a much higher degree of supply chain risk and sustain greater liability by providing increasingly complex and sophisticated services. The trend is, however, seen as positive. The increased complexity of service offerings and the ingenuity of operators in designing alternative supply chain solutions is enabling the mid-sized, regional-based supplier to compete with their larger multi-national colleagues. TT Club supports and rewards quality innovation in the industry and has been a sponsor of the BIFA awards since their inception nearly twenty years ago. By the very nature of the insurance services it provides, the Club is at the heart of the supply chain industry and consequently, is able to monitor the dynamic trends that are always at play as logistics operators strive to improve their service offerings to meet market demands. IP 2013 Issue I

Inland Port 2013 No.1  

Inland Port 2013 No.1

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