Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Julia Brownley (D-CA) announced $6.3 million in federal funding for U.S. Army Corps of Engineers projects for the Port of Hueneme and Ventura Harbor. The U.S. Army Corps’ FY2021 Work Plan includes funds for the annual dredging of Ventura Harbor. The work plan also allocates “donor port” funds for the Port of Hueneme, pursuant to legislation Congresswoman Brownley spearheaded in 2016.
“One of my top priorities in Congress is fighting for the economic vitality of our region,” said Congresswoman Julia Brownley. “I am pleased our efforts to increase funding for local ports and harbors continue to benefit our region. Ensuring our water-side infrastructure is properly maintained and our channels are dredged to the appropriate depths will ensure our ports and harbors can continue to operate, helping to fuel our economy and keeping jobs in our region. Infrastructure investment is always critical for our economy, but especially so during this time.”
The FY2021 Army Corps’ work plan includes $6,245,000 for Ventura Harbor to support this year’s annual dredge. This amount reflects an increase of $1.45 million above the amount originally included in the Army Corps’ budget proposal.
“On behalf of the Ventura Port District’s Commissioners and dredging team we would like to acknowledge and thank Congresswoman Brownley for her tireless support of Ventura Harbor,” said Brian Pendleton, Ventura Port District General Manager. “Congresswoman Brownley’s on-going advocacy for Ventura Harbor helped secure an additional $1.45 million in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers FY2021 Work Plan, for a total of $6,245,000 for Ventura Harbor dredging. This support demonstrates her on-going commitment to our working waterfront including the commercial fishing industry so central to the District’s mission.”
Port of Hueneme
The Army Corps’ work plan also provided $140,000 in “donor port” funds for the Port of Hueneme. Donor ports contribute far more to the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund than they receive back for dredging and maintenance. In 2016, Brownley spearheaded a provision in the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (P.L. 114-322), which ensured the Port of Hueneme and Port of San Diego would be eligible for these funds. Other donor ports in the region include the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. For many years, Brownley and other California members have long fought for better equity for California’s donor ports. In December 2020, Congress passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2020, which will ensure donor ports get an even better return on their contributions to the Trust Fund in future years.
“Any federal funding that we can bring back to our Port is critical as our workforce continues to move essential cargo to 15 states, keeping our communities fed and supplied as we fight the pandemic and build back our economy,” said Port of Hueneme CEO and Port Director Kristin Decas. “We look ahead to the next budget cycle as the new Harbor Maintenance Trust funding framework will increase these dollars ten-fold. Thank you to Congresswoman Brownley for continuing to advocate for these vital dollars to come back to the Port and keep this essential cargo moving.”