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Abstract

Given the lack of consensus and certainty in how funding should best be generated to meet critical infrastructure and development needs, this Note proposes an amendment to the Shipping Act to provide port authorities with the express power to impose fees for the construction, operation, and maintenance of qualifying port-related infrastructure and development initiatives. The amendment would effectively spread the costs specific to qualifying initiatives over the useful life of the project. Part I discusses the relevant provisions and judicial standards associated with the Tonnage Clause and Shipping Act. Part II addresses the efforts by both Congress and port authorities to generate funding for port-related infrastructure and development initiatives. Part III proposes a legislative amendment to the Shipping Act that provides port authorities with the express power to impose fees on cargo over a reasonable investment horizon for qualifying infrastructure and development projects.

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