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Blunt proposes SEMO port funding

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

CAPE GIRARDEAU - The Southeast Missouri Regional Port Authority could receive a major boost to its capital improvement plans if lawmakers approve a budget request from Gov. Matt Blunt.

At the annual Governor's Conference on Agriculture, Blunt proposed spending $4 million at five state port authorities, including $721,558 for the SEMO Port.

The port last received state money for capital projects in 2005, said Dan Overbey, port authority executive director.

While Blunt's proposal indicates the money would be used for dock improvements and dike construction, Overbey said the authority has already done some of that work with its own funds. The port would rather receive money designated for improvements to the rail line serving the facility, he said.