Charleston Deepening Project to Receive $2.5 Million to Continue Study

February 8, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – February 8, 2012 – U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-SouthCarolina) said he was pleased the work plan today released by the U.S.Army Corp of Engineers set aside $2.5 million to continue the on-goingstudy to deepen Charleston Harbor.  The federal share is matched by anequal contribution from the South Carolina State Ports Authority.
“This is the most significant federal contribution made thus far to theCharleston Harbor deepening effort,” said Graham.  “It is a significantvictory given the fact President Obama’s budget for Fiscal Year 2012 hadnothing allocated for Charleston.”
“As a result of language we were able to include in last year’s spendingbill, Charleston was eligible to receive funding to continue itsdeepening study,” said Graham.  “These funds are being awarded under amore merit-based system. We have always known that Charleston will farewell under that standard as harbor deepening is a worthwhileinvestment.”
“Today, about one out of every five jobs in South Carolina is tied –directly and indirectly – to the operation of the Port,” said Graham.“Deepening the port will allow us to keep these jobs in our state andalso create more jobs in the future.”
Graham noted President Obama will release his Fiscal Year 2013 budgetnext week and is hopeful funds to deepen Charleston Harbor will beincluded.  He also continues to work with the Army Corps of Engineersand South Carolina State Ports Authority to explore avenues to helpexpedite the harbor deepening project from its estimated 2024 completiondate.
“Deepening Charleston Harbor is the number-one issue for SouthCarolina’s economy,” said Graham. “The Port of Charleston is oureconomic gateway to the world.  We have to ensure the harbor deepeningprocess moves forward in an efficient and cost-effective manner.  Thisis good news we’ll celebrate today, but we know the President’s budgetrelease early next week is yet another important step in the process.”