NEW ORLEANS – The Federal Emergency Management Agency recently announced funding for infrastructure repairs to one of the region’s busiest waterway navigation networks damaged during Hurricane Ike.
The Sabine-Neches Navigation District will use approximately $8.7 million from FEMA to finance repairs to its dredging placement areas. Ships use these areas to deposit sediments that are dredged from the bottom of Sabine-Neches waterways. Dredging is essential to keep the Sabine-Neches ship channels functional and maximize the flow of cargo. Dredged sediments are later recycled into usable land.
“This funding will greatly benefit the Sabine-Neches Navigation District as it makes repairs that are essential to its daily operations,” said Acting Executive Director of FEMA’s Louisiana Recovery Office Joe Threat. “Given all the cargo that passes through the Sabine-Neches, it is a vital component to both the region’s and country’s economy. FEMA is proud to have assisted in funding the crucial repairs to the dredging placement areas.”
The Sabine-Neches Navigation District provides channel alignment, land reclamation, drainage and erosion control for the waterway navigation network along the southern Louisiana-Texas border. Traversing vessels and barges include those carrying crude oil, petroleum and other chemicals. Repairs to the damages began in October and should be completed sometime next year.
“Keeping clean ship channels is viable,” said Clayton Henderson, assistant general manager of the Sabine-Neches Navigation District. “With this FEMA grant, we will be able to repair this dredging placement area and allow ships to continue to come through here.”
When FEMA approves projects through its supplemental Public Assistance grant, the funds are made available to the Governor’s Office of Homeland Security & Emergency Preparedness, who disburses them to the applicant for eligible work completed.
The Public Assistance program works with state and local officials to fund recovery measures and the rebuilding of government and certain private nonprofit organizations’ buildings, as well as roads, bridges and water and sewer plants. In order for the process to be successful, federal, state and local partners coordinate to draw up project plans, fund these projects and oversee their completion.
FEMA’s mission is to support our citizens and first responders to ensure that as a nation we work together to build, sustain, and improve our capability to prepare for, protect against, respond to, recover from, and mitigate all hazards.