By the President of the United States of America
Virtually every major metropolitan region of the United States centers around a port, or is closely linked by rail or highway to a port. As waterborne trade in the United States approaches 2 billion tons of cargo per year, the rippling economic effects of expanding port activities will continue to generate employment, revenues, and community development.
Local control and administration of our Nation's port system has fostered the development of some 170 commercial seaports and numerous inland ports on our navigable inland waterways. As the world's leading trading country, the United States depends upon local port expenditures, modernizations and expansions to accommodate expected growth in trade and improvements in transportation technology. But the benefits extend to the national economy, as well as to local communities.
Since 1946, local port agencies have invested more than $5 billion to construct and modernize our pier and wharf facilities. These local public expenditures have essentially been matched by the investments of private marine terminal owners, while the Federal Government helps provide channel and navigation improvements. For the years 1973-1978, these local port expenditures reached $1.8 billion. Projections for the next five years total an estimated $3 billion. These local investments are the vital streams of our foreign and domestic waterborne commerce.
Now, THEREFORE, I, JIMMY CARTER, President of the United States of America, in order to remind Americans of the importance of the port industry of the United States to our national life, do hereby designate the seven calendar days beginning October 7, 1979, as National Port Week. I invite the Governors of the several states, the chief officials of local governments, and the people of the United States to observe such week with appropriate ceremonies and activities.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand this sixth day of October, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred seventy-nine, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and fourth.
[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:39 a.m., October 9, 1979]