• ITVI.USA
    16,350.840
    -55.350
    -0.3%
  • OTLT.USA
    2.731
    0.025
    0.9%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.660
    -0.160
    -0.7%
  • OTVI.USA
    16,343.200
    -45.660
    -0.3%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    3.520
    0.380
    12.1%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    2.960
    -0.660
    -18.2%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.610
    0.250
    18.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    3.340
    -0.130
    -3.7%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    2.100
    -0.250
    -10.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    3.860
    -0.220
    -5.4%
  • WAIT.USA
    126.000
    -2.000
    -1.6%
  • ITVI.USA
    16,350.840
    -55.350
    -0.3%
  • OTLT.USA
    2.731
    0.025
    0.9%
  • OTRI.USA
    21.660
    -0.160
    -0.7%
  • OTVI.USA
    16,343.200
    -45.660
    -0.3%
  • TSTOPVRPM.ATLPHL
    3.520
    0.380
    12.1%
  • TSTOPVRPM.CHIATL
    2.960
    -0.660
    -18.2%
  • TSTOPVRPM.DALLAX
    1.610
    0.250
    18.4%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXDAL
    3.340
    -0.130
    -3.7%
  • TSTOPVRPM.PHLCHI
    2.100
    -0.250
    -10.6%
  • TSTOPVRPM.LAXSEA
    3.860
    -0.220
    -5.4%
  • WAIT.USA
    126.000
    -2.000
    -1.6%
American ShipperShippingTrade and Compliance

Northwest Seaport Alliance praises effort to fund ‘donor ports’

Senate committee approves $25 million for ports that traditionally have received little money from the Harbor Maintenance Tax.

   The Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA) of the ports of Tacoma and Seattle said the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee approved $25 million to fund a Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund reform provision that would benefit them and other “donor ports.” 
   “As so-called ‘donor ports,’ the ports of Seattle and Tacoma currently receive pennies for each dollar credited to the fund through Harbor Maintenance Tax (HMT) collections. Also, the additional cost of the HMT is enough to serve as an incentive to ship U.S.-bound cargo through ports in Canada where no HMT is charged rather than through Puget Sound ports,” the alliance said in a statement.
    HMT is an ad valorem tax imposed on imports used principally to dredge ports. Much of the money is spent in river ports that need frequent dredging. West Coast ports and other “donor ports” have often complained that while much of the tax is collected on goods moving over their docks, little of the money is spent on improvements in their ports because they are naturally deep.
   In addition, historically, only a portion of the money collected for the HMT is appropriated by Congress for its intended purpose, and much is held in a trust fund used to reduce the federal deficit.
   The alliance praised Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., a member of the Senate committee, for her efforts in getting full funding under Section 2106 of the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA), which was co-authored by both Murray and Sen. Maria Cantwell, also a Democrat from Washington state, and signed into law in 2014.
   Section 2106 reformed the HMT to allow some of the money to be used to fund port infrastructure improvements in donor ports and provide and rebates to shippers.
   Port of Seattle Commissioner John Creighton said “Addressing our HMT cost disadvantage relative to Canadian ports has been a top priority for the Northwest Seaport Alliance.”

Chris Dupin

Chris Dupin has written about trade and transportation and other business subjects for a variety of publications before joining American Shipper and Freightwaves.

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