For Immediate Release - June 10, 2014

PATRICK ADMINISTRATION CELEBRATES SIGNING OF WATER RESOURCES REFORM AND DEVELOPMENT ACT

BOSTON – Tuesday, June 10, 2014 – Governor Deval Patrick today applauded the signing by President Barack Obama of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, a bill that provides federal funds to support the $310 million Boston Harbor Dredging Project.  According to the Army Corps of Engineers, dredging Boston Harbor will double volumes at the Paul W. Conley Container Terminal in South Boston, and every $1 spent on dredging results in nearly $9 in return, yielding $2.7 billion in regional economic activity in Boston and across the Commonwealth. 

“By making the necessary investments in our nation’s ports and water infrastructure, this legislation creates new economic development opportunities in Massachusetts,” said Governor Patrick. “I am pleased that federal funding has been approved for the Boston Harbor Dredging project, which will help us create more jobs, increase trade opportunities and ensure the future economic competitiveness of the working port.”

Ports along the East Coast of the United States are investing to prepare for larger container ships that will be coming through the expanded Panama Canal when it opens in late 2015. Governor Patrick visited the Panama Canal and was briefed on its expansion during his innovation mission to Panama in March 2014. In addition to deepening the main shipping channels in Boston Harbor, the dredging project will deepen Chelsea Creek to ensure the safe and efficient passage of the 67 percent of the region’s petroleum needs that enter through the Port of Boston. 

The Water Resources Reform and Development Act provides $216 million in federal funds for the dredging project. The total cost of the project is estimated at $310 million. The Commonwealth and the Massachusetts Port Authority will split the remaining non-federal cost share of the project.

"The Boston Harbor Improvement Project is what investment in infrastructure is all about: a deeper harbor means increasing container traffic at the harbor, and every tax dollar spent will produce nearly $9 in business activity," said Senator Elizabeth Warren. "This federal investment will help strengthen our economy in Boston and throughout the Commonwealth."

“Boston Harbor is an economic anchor for the entire New England region, and this investment will help ensure its future as a port of world-class distinction,” said Senator Edward J. Markey. “Deepening the harbor’s shipping lanes will help expand Massachusetts’ economy, create jobs and spur investment in the entire region. I thank Governor Patrick, Mayor Walsh, Massport and the entire Massachusetts Congressional delegation for their leadership and commitment to securing this important funding.”

“I have been working to advance the Boston Harbor dredging work for several years, and I am pleased that federal funds are authorized for this project,” said Congressman Michael Capuano.  “When completed, the dredge will help make the Port of Boston more competitive internationally, create jobs in the region and provide a terrific economic benefit to the entire Boston area.”

"Today’s bill signing culminates a great effort by the Massachusetts Delegation, working in a bipartisan manner with our colleagues in Congress, to include $310 million for the Boston Harbor dredging project in the Water Resources Reform and Development Act,” said Congressman Stephen F. Lynch. “This critical project will create jobs, prepare the Port of Boston to compete with its global partners in the growing ocean freight industry, and ensure that the port remains an economic engine for Massachusetts and the region for decades to come.” 

“This federal investment is great news for the Port of Boston and all of the businesses, workers, and consumers who rely on it,” said Massachusetts Port Authority CEO Thomas P. Glynn.  “Boston has a proud maritime tradition, and we will continue to work with Governor Patrick, the Legislature, and the Congressional Delegation to make sure it’s an economic engine for years to come.”

“Transportation is not just about moving goods and people – it’s about creating environments for economic growth and opportunity,” said MassDOT Secretary and CEO and Massport Board Chairman Richard A. Davey. “This funding will allow us to make needed investments in our own transportation infrastructure so that we may continue to be a leader in the shipping industry and compete on a global scale.”

“I join Governor Patrick in applauding the President for signing this important piece of legislation,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Gregory Bialecki. “These investments will not only create more jobs in the Port of Boston, but they will also help businesses expand, providing new economic development opportunities for the Commonwealth.”

Conley Container Terminal is a 101 acre facility that processed approximately 200,000 twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), the container industry standard of measure, in calendar year 2013. It has access to three waterborne trade lanes: The Far East, Northern Europe and the Mediterranean Region. Top containerized imports are frozen seafood, footwear, furniture and alcoholic beverages. Top containerized exports are hides and skins, paper, frozen seafood and scrap metal.


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