SENATOR HUFFMAN TOURS SABINE NECHES NAVIGATION DISTRICT
PORT ARTHUR — (October 27, 2009) - Senator Joan Huffman and Senator Tommy Williams met with officials at the Sabine Neches Navigation District today to discuss the extensive operations of the Sabine Neches Waterway (SNWW) and its importance to the economic vitality of both Texas and the nation.
"I appreciated the opportunity to learn more about this important waterway," Senator Huffman said. "Not only does this channel serve as the largest military out-port in the country, it is also a gateway to our nation's energy infrastructure."
The tour was led by Sabine Neches Navigation District Managers, Randall Reese and Clayton Henderson, who explained that closing the port for just one day results in a $50 million loss in commerce to regional industries. The Senators were briefed on the history, administration, and environmental and economic impact of the SNWW before taking a comprehensive tour of the area.
The district was constructed in 1909 as a saltwater barrier for rice farmers in the area, and has evolved into the nation's fourth largest waterway in total trade tonnage. It supplies twenty percent of the U.S. gasoline east of the Rockies and is predicted to hold forty-five percent of the nation's LNG import regasification capacity by next year.
"The Sabine Neches Waterway is a tremendous asset to our state, both as a natural resource and as an economic engine. I look forward to working with the Navigation District to ensure that SNWW continues to flourish as a major national port," Huffman said.