NEW BEDFORD, Mass. /Massachusetts Neswswire/ — On Monday, Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray announced the formation of the Ports of Massachusetts Compact, an agreement designed to boost economic development and capitalize on resources in the Commonwealth’s seaports.
The compact was signed by the mayors of Boston, New Bedford, Fall River, Gloucester and Salem; in addition to the Massachusetts Secretaries of Transportation, Energy and Environmental Affairs, Housing and Economic Development, Massport; and the Legislature’s Joint Committee on Transportation. Lieutenant Governor Murray will serve as chair.
“With approximately 2,800 miles of coastline, there are valuable opportunities for increased transportation and economic development in the state’s seaport communities,” said Lieutenant Governor Murray, who also chairs the Seaport Advisory Council. “The creation of the Ports of Massachusetts Compact ensures we are strategically planning development opportunities and sharing knowledge across agencies and municipalities to help benefit the entire Commonwealth.”
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) Planning Division will lead research and planning efforts for the compact and will identify ways to maximize funding to improve infrastructure.
“Coordinating efforts of the fishing, energy, shipping and transportation industries that operate in our ports is healthy for business and job growth, as well as the environment,” said MassDOT Secretary Richard Davey.
The Compact’s initial action items will include fishing regulations, coastal shipping trends and recommending a plan for seaport coordination. Other Compact goals will include moving people and goods safely, securely and more efficiently through the five ports while providing intermodal connectivity for those doing business and visiting the Commonwealth.
“The historic seaports of Massachusetts are a vital tool for local communities to help support economic development and create local jobs,” said Secretary of Housing and Economic Development Greg Bialecki. “The ‘Ports of Massachusetts’ Compact will support the many vital industries that use these seaports to operate and help boost economic development in these regions.”
“We look forward to working more closely with our fishing communities to better protect and manage the development of our ports,” said Energy and Environmental Affairs Secretary Rick Sullivan.
“As our roads and highways continue to grow more and more congested, we must look to expand our usage of our waterways for both transit and commercial purposes,” said Senator Thomas M. McGee. “This compact will help us fully explore sound environmental and economic policies for our ports, waterfronts and waterways. I am looking forward to continuing our commitment to our ports and exploring ways to maximize the impact they have on the Massachusetts economy.”
Ports of Massachusetts Compact Members:
SEAPORT ADVISORY COUNCIL
Lt. Governor Timothy P. Murray, Chair
MASSACHUSETTS JOINT COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION
Senator Thomas M. McGee, Senate Chair
Representative William M. Straus, House Chair
MASSACHUSETTS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Richard A. Davey, Secretary & CEO
EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENTAL AFFAIRS
Richard K. Sullivan, Jr., Secretary
EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF HOUSING AND ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
Gregory Bialecki, Secretary
MASSACHUSETTS PORT AUTHORITY
David S. Mackey, Interim CEO
CITY OF BOSTON
Thomas M. Menino, Mayor
CITY OF NEW BEDFORD
Jonathan F. Mitchell, Mayor
CITY OF FALL RIVER
William A. Flanagan, Mayor
CITY OF GLOUCESTER
Carolyn A. Kirk, Mayor
CITY OF SALEM
Kimberley Driscoll, Mayor.