The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has signed a strategic partnership agreement with the Arkansas Oklahoma Port Operators Association to ensure the continued viability of the McClellan-Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System and to identify opportunities for future develop and modernization initiatives.
Michael J. Teague, colonel and commander of the Tulsa, Okla., district; Glen A. Masset, colonel and commander of the Little Rock, Ark., district; and David Yarbrough, AOPOA president, signed the agreement in Fort Smith, Ark., on Jan. 31, 2013.
“This agreement brings together the corps, ports and terminals and the stakeholders along the length of the 445-mile navigation system in order to address the numerous issues that we are facing today,” said Yarbrough in a written statement. “There is currently a backlog of critical maintenance and repairs totaling approximately $100 million.”
Planned initiatives include the development of a collaborate federal and non-federal management partnership recognized by Arkansas and Oklahoma state governments, joint operations and a maintenance plan, a methodology to evaluate current and potential future economic impacts, catastrophic event response, mechanisms that bring the collective resources of all users to bear for the system and a strategic communications plan.