WASHINGTON, DC (NBC33) — Congressman Jeff Landry (R, LA-03) and Tim Bishop (D, NY-01) are leading a bipartisan coalition of 72 House Members for funding of proper port dredging.
The coalition sent a letter today to the U.S. House Budget Committee requesting the Committee apportion all Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund (HMTF) proceeds for its stated legal purpose: harbor dredging.
“At a time when the national unemployment rate continues to exceed eight percent, we believe it is imperative that all the revenue generated by the HMT be fully committed towards dredging our nation’s ports, an activity that will put Americans back to work and return economic prosperity to our manufacturing, agriculture and energy sectors,” wrote Landry and his colleagues.
Landry’s district has the most domestic maritime industry jobs in the nation. The issue of dredging is one that was in the forefront last year as several ports along the Mississippi faced vessel restrictions due to a build up of silt in the river.
Landry says he’s hopeful the widespread support will help push this issue in Washington.
“I thank Ranking Member Bishop for his steadfast leadership on this issue and recognizing the way to solve problems in Washington is by building coalitions. I also thank the 70 members who joined us in signing this important letter and the members that followed our lead by sending their own letter to the Budget Committee on this important issue. Together, we can properly solve the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund boondoggle.”