Water floats into the spotlight next week, but we're not talking about the water you drink. Governor Walker has proclaimed September 9 to 15 as Wisconsin Ports Week.
Sheri Walz, WisDOT's harbors and waterways program manager, explains the dual importance of commercial ports.
"Port facilities are linking cargo-carrying ships to the state's network of highways, railroads and airports, moving over $1.6 billion worth of goods and contributing 10,000 jobs to Wisconsin. That cargo is valued at more than $8 billion and equates to about 40 million tons of cargo that’s being moved by the 29 commercial ports located in Wisconsin."
The DOT awards grants for harbor-related improvement projects around the state at both public and private ports. Examples include dredging projects and dock facility maintenance. The Harbor Assistance Program got its start in 1980 and since then nearly $113 million in funding has been awarded to benefit more than 80 projects. Eight were just announced in July.