Riverkeepers Criticize Delaware River Deepening Project (USA)
The Army Corps announced recently $16.86 million for Delaware River deepening project using a “slush” fund created to circumvent the ban on earmarks passed last year.
Environmental and community advocates cried foul – pointing out that the Army Corps chose this path to fund the Deepening because it cannot honestly demonstrate the project meets minimum guidelines generally used to make taxpayer funding decisions.
“This is the ugliest example of political manipulation we have ever seen regarding this project – facts, law and good policy have been thrown out the window to serve the political whims of Senators Casey and Toomey,” said Maya van Rossum, the Delaware Riverkeeper. “This project is an economic loser, is unnecessary for the ports, and inflicts major environmental and community harm. The project is still hundreds of millions of dollars shy of what is needed to complete it. In short, the project is an embarrassment and waste of money, and we will continue to work to stop it now,” van Rossum said.
“If this were a project worth $16.9 Million, the private sector would find the $16.9 Million to make it happen. In an era when the country is in major deficit, we should not be spending any taxpayer funds on projects that are known to be a loser, not a project that will choke the Delaware Estuary,” said Brady Russell, Eastern PA Director, Clean Water Action.
Dredging Today Staff, February 9, 2012; Image: usace