Congress has authorized $310 million to help pay for the first phase of a massive expansion program at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles.
The ports would also contribute $310 million over the next several years to dredge two main shipping channels and create 800 acres of landfill, said A. Richard Aschieris, legislative officer for the Port of Long Beach.
"Congress is saying they think this is a good project" but a separate bill must also be passed to actually appropriate the money, he said.
The combined $620 million for 800 acres is but a small part of the $4-billion, 2,600-acre expansion that the ports--already the two largest on the West Coast--plan by the year 2020.
The Army Corps of Engineers must approve the project before federal money will be appropriated, Aschieris said.