Congresswoman Jaime Herrera Beutler took to the U.S. House floor Tuesday night to advocate for the importance of dredging the nation’s small ports. Her speech coincided with her letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, urging the agency to reprioritize funding to conduct maintenance dredging for critical channels.
In her speech, Jaime spotlighted the ports in her district that are struggling due to a lack of maintenance dredging—particularly the Port of Chinook and Port of Ilwaco. As a Member of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee, Jaime helped ensure that the House Appropriations Energy and Water bill released on Tuesday includes $1 billion from the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund for dredging and operations of channels and harbors.
“For the towns in my district and up and down the West Coast that depend upon these ports, these industries are the major employers and economic lifelines for their area,” wrote Jaime in her letter. “With the loss of safe access in and out of the channels for the boats that deliver their raw products for market, they stand to suffer severe economic impacts that could continue for years if these industries are forced to close their doors or move out of the area.”
LETTER: Click here for Jaime’s letter to the U.S. Army Corps advocating for small port maintenance
VIDEO: Click here for video of Jaime’s floor speech