Tuesday, June 14, 2016

POLA Adopts Billion Dollar Budget

By Mark Edward Nero

The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners has approved a $1.17 billion fiscal year 2016-17 annual budget for the Port of Los Angeles, a 5.7 percent increase over the current budget.

The port says the newly approved budget’s projected gains are largely due to anticipated growth in cargo volumes and related shipping service revenues. Cargo volumes have been on the upswing since service levels returned to normal during the first half of 2015, following a period of congestion coinciding with labor contract negotiations. Implementation of a chassis pool program by the port’s three major chassis providers and supply chain optimization efforts also have showed positive results in terms of cargo velocity.

The port has said this is expected to continue in FY 2016-17, with cargo volumes projected to grow by 1.9 percent over the prior year budget to about 8.5 million TEUs annually.

The budget also includes operating expenses of $249 million, a 3.6 percent increase over the previous year, driven primarily by increases in salaries and benefits and a reduction in capitalized expenditures; and $452.8 million in operating receipts, a mechanism for funding day-to-day port operations.

The port’s 2016-17 $146.1 million capital improvement plan anticipates a 24 percent decrease relative to the prior year budget. Completed projects in FY 2015-16 included the TraPac Intermodal Container Transfer Facility, TraPac terminal buildings and main gate, the John S. Gibson Intersection/Northbound Interstate-110 ramp access improvements, as well as Interstate-110/State Route 47 connector improvements.

Key terminal projects budgeted to continue in FY 2016-17 include TraPac backland improvements, Yusen Terminals, berth redevelopment, electrical infrastructure at the World Cruise Center, wharf rehabilitation at the WWL Vehicle Services terminal and wharf improvements at the port’s liquid bulk terminals.