Honorable Steve Kagen, M.D.

Wisconsin's former 8th District Representative

January 4, 2007 to December 22, 2010

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Agencies on dredging Green Bay harbor: We will ‘finish what they started’

Posted on Mar 5, 2010 by

U.S. Rep. Steve Kagen, D-Appleton, assured agencies dredging Green Bay harbor will ‘finish what they started’

By Tony Walter • [email protected] • March 5, 2010

The Appleton Democrat said officials from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said they would notify him next week when dredging of the navigational channel and turning basins will commence.

The agencies’ assurance came during a meeting of the House Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment, Kagen said.

"They both agreed they’ll finish what they started and there’s a commitment that the revenues will be provided," said Kagen.

The Corps announced last month that it planned to halt dredging in the navigational channel until 2017 because the EPA’s dredging requirements were too costly.

The U.S. Department of Justice, representing the EPA and Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, ordered the dredging stopped in August because it was interfering with the Fox River PCB cleanup project.

The EPA and DNR claimed that dredging of the channel and turning basins at Georgia-Pacific and the East River were stirring up PCB sediment in the river. The Corps, which has had a contract to dredge since 1986, uses mechanical dredging. The Fox River Cleanup Project uses hydraulic dredging.

The threat of halted dredging in the channel led the Brown County Harbor Commission to schedule an informational meeting Monday with terminal operators. The shipping business brings $75 million of business into the Green Bay harbor annually and is responsible for approximately 700 jobs.

Brown County Port Manager Dean Haen said the meeting will be held but said resuming the dredging would be welcome.

The Port of Green Bay to Northeastern Wisconsin and the state as a whole is significant to the region’s economy, Haen said.

"It is untenable to allow that economic engine to be halted," he said.

 

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