The Assistant Secretary of the Army (Civil Works) this week signed the Chief of Engineers Report on the Channel Improvement Project for the Sabine-Neches Waterway in Jefferson County, Texas, approving transmission of the project to the U.S. Congress for authorization and funding.
“We are pleased to see this project move one step closer to authorization and funding from Congress,” Paul Beard, Chairman of the Sabine-Neches Navigation District, said. “The Channel Improvement Project will increase opportunities for use of the waterway and greatly enhance economic benefits to Jefferson County and the U.S. by creating jobs and stimulating economic development. This project will secure our area’s future as America’s Energy Gateway and the nation’s largest military out-load port.”
The Navigation District, in an agreement with the Corps of Engineers, is the “local non-federal sponsor” of the Channel Improvement Project, which would deepen the Sabine-Neches Waterway from 40 feet to 48 feet. According to a study by the Perryman Group, the project is expected to produce billions of dollars of economic benefits and create more than 21,000 new jobs. The Sabine-Neches Waterway has been improved five times, with projects completed in 1912, 1925, 1935, 1947 and 1962. The last improvement project was 50 years ago.
The Channel Improvement Project has received bipartisan support from both the Texas and Louisiana Congressional delegations. Ultimately, Congress will determine the timing and scope of funding once authorized in the Water Resources Development Act.
The Sabine-Neches Navigation District is a political subdivision of the state of Texas that manages, advocates for, and sustains the navigable waters of Jefferson County, Texas. The SNND has operated in Jefferson County for over 100 years, promoting and supporting the maintenance of the Sabine-Neches Waterway in order to facilitate continued commerce in the ship channel for southeast Texas and the nation. The Sabine-Neches Waterway is an engine that drives the economies of southeast Texas and the U.S., pumping billions of dollars into the economy and providing more than 100,000 permanent jobs.