Study: Indiana ports generate $5.4 billion a year
A study released on Thursday at the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville revealed that Indiana's three ports annually contribute $5.4 billion in economic activity to the state economy and 43,700 jobs.
The study was conducted by maritime consulting firm Martin Associates and was peer reviewed by economics professors from Indiana University, University of Notre Dame and Purdue University. The study focused on 2009 data, which reflected a significant economic downturn, suggesting the results are conservative estimates for the ports' annual impacts.
'This study helps us quantify how valuable these ports are to our state's economy, but the biggest contribution of our ports is the competitive advantage they create for Indiana companies that ship goods by water,' said Rich Cooper, chief executive officer for the Ports of Indiana, in a statement.
The study revealed other annual economic contributions generated by Indiana's three ports, including $2.38 billion in personal income, $732 million in local purchases and $224 in million state and local taxes.
The study's release coincided with a special celebration commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Port of Indiana-Jeffersonville. The port handled its first cargoes in the summer of 1985 when a shipment of automobile presses from Germany was unloaded from a barge. Over the last 25 years, the port has handled more than more than 30 million tons of barge shipments moving cargo in and out of southeast Indiana.
The Ports of Indiana is a statewide port authority that operates a system of three ports on the Ohio River and Lake Michigan in Mount Vernon, Burns Harbor and Jeffersonville. The Ports of Indiana manages about 2,600 acres, which are home to 60 companies and 800 acres of available industrial sites.