Congressional members heard from the port industry about concerns over adequate dredge capacity at a House Joint Subcommittee hearing of the Transportation and Infrastructure’s Subcommittees on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation and Water Resources
and the Environment. The hearing focused on interpretations of existing ownership requirements for U.S. flag dredges, especially exemptions to foreign chartering prohibitions.
Rear Admiral Richard M. Larrabee, Director of Port Commerce at the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, testified for the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA). AAPA voiced concern that any changes to the law’s exemption could restrict competition on dredging projects and may increase the cost of dredging.
In his testimony, Admiral Larrabee stated, "We must ensure that this country has access to adequate dredge capacity that is available when needed, is cost-effective, and is technically appropriate for the job." He went on to request that Congress direct "the General Accounting Office to study how all existing policies, including ownership requirements, are affecting our ability to maintain and construct navigation channels in a timely and cost-effective manner." A copy of Admiral Larrabee’s testimony is available by following this link.