After Months of Delays, Administration to Release Some Port Security Funds

Jun 12 2003

$22.2 million to improve port security infrastructure at Washington ports

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) – U.S. Senator Patty Murray (D-Wash.) today announced that Washington state will receive $22.2 million to improve security at the state’s ports.

Murray insisted on including the critical port security funding in two Appropriations bills passed by Congress earlier this year.

The funding will allow ports in Washington state to improve infrastructure, secure their perimeters, purchase new equipment, upgrade communications technology and protect the safety and security of our port communities.

Since September 11th, cities in Washington state and across the country have borne the burden of preparing for and preventing another terrorist incident. These increased costs have taken an added toll on our port communities.

“Our ports are a potential vulnerability for a terrorist attack, which is why I have been working so hard to secure this critical funding,” Sen. Murray said. “After months of delays, I am pleased that the Department of Homeland Security is finally releasing this important funding so that we can protect our ports and the thousands of people who live and work nearby. This funding comes not a moment too soon.”

Yesterday, Murray won a battle with the Bush Administration over “Operation Safe Commerce,” a container-tracking initiative that she authored. Operation Safe Commerce is separate from the Port Security grants Murray announced today.

Murray was forced to take the extraordinary step of placing a “hold” on a senior Administration budget nominee to protest the Administration’s attempt to shortchange Operation Safe Commerce.

In a letter to Senator Murray, the Bush Administration yesterday abandoned its plan to divert nearly half of the $58 million that Congress had approved for the port security initiative.

“I will continue to stand up for our state and make sure that our ports and communities are safe and secure,” Murray said.

Port Security Funds to be released:

Tesoro Refining and Marketing Anacortes $160,000
Port of Port Angeles Port Angeles $100,000
Washington State Ferries Seattle $9,420,124
Port of Seattle Seattle, Tacoma, Everett $10,037,507
Clipper Navigation, Inc. Seattle $117,300
Total Terminals International Seattle $392,000
City of Tacoma Police Department Tacoma $258,234
Tidewater Barge Lines Vancouver $8,598
SSA Pacific Terminals Seattle, LA/LongBeach $1,699,579
Pacific Cruises Northwest, Inc Bellingham $9,617
Total: $22,202,959