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News Release
FOR RELEASE - November 18, 2005
Contact: Aaron Ellis,

American Association of Port Authorities
Phone: (202) 792-4033

AAPA Says Corps Funding Bill 'Critical to U.S. Economy'

Ports Association CEO Urges President To Sign Record Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works Program Appropriations

ALEXANDRIA, Va.  (Nov. 18, 2005) – The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA)—the organization representing public ports throughout the Western Hemisphere—today praised Congress for passing the $5.383 billion Energy and Water Development appropriations bill for fiscal year 2006 and urged President Bush to sign the legislation, which provides funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ Civil Works program.

"This record Civil Works appropriations bill is critical to the U.S. economy, because it pays for the timely construction and maintenance of our nation’s navigation system," said Kurt Nagle, AAPA president and CEO. "The navigation system supports our ports and harbors, which accommodate more than $2 trillion worth of waterborne commerce each year. The same system also helps ensure our national security, so we must not allow it to deteriorate or become obsolete."

After weeks of negotiations, House and Senate conferees this week agreed to a historic funding level for the Corps’ Civil Works program, exceeding the Administration’s recommendation by nearly $1 billion. The increased funding level was the result of an additional allocation from the House Budget Committee to cover some Hurricane Katrina-related funding relative to the bill. Yesterday, Congress sent the bill to the White House for the President’s signature.

"We’re obviously very pleased with the funding level and the positive effect this will have in future years," said the Corps’ Director of Civil Works, Maj. Gen. Don Riley. Gen. Riley, appearing on a panel yesterday at the AAPA-Corps Project Managers Workshop, held in Charleston, S.C., thanked AAPA and its members for taking a lead role in successfully advocating for a more robust Civil Works budget.

Gen. Riley went on to say that while the conference report was not clear on the use of continuing (multi-year) contracts and re-programming of funds from project to project, he believed the Corps would be able to develop guidance for field offices that would be acceptable to the Congress.

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