State looking to revive ports with new agency

AP Photo/Steven Senne, File
AP Photo/Steven Senne, File

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Legislative leaders are proposing a new agency to make Connecticut’s three deep-water ports more competitive, saying the time is ripe to carve out a niche and boost their economic potential.

Officials are calling for a statewide port authority, a quasi-public agency, to promote the ports in New Haven, Bridgeport and New London to domestic and international shippers and seek funding for improvements. The move comes as U.S. ports invest billions in dredging and other projects to accommodate a new generation of larger ships anticipated as the Panama Canal is expanded.

While Connecticut’s ports can’t handle the largest ships, officials are hoping the state will benefit by winning the business of smaller ships as major ports focus on larger vessels.

Business has steadily declined at the ports in recent years.

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