Friday, July 28, 2017

San Francisco Port, Shipyard Settlement

By Karen Robes Meeks

The Port of San Francisco and former operator BAE Systems Ship Repair, Inc. have reached a $4.9 million settlement toward improvements and upkeep at the shipyard.

The port commission approved the agreement earlier this month.

“While the legal dispute continues between the port’s former operators, the port appreciates BAE working diligently with the port and City Attorney’s Office to reach this settlement, which will help recover operations at the shipyard quickly,” said port Executive Director Elaine Forbes. “The port is grateful for its dedicated labor and development partners that have helped ensure local jobs at the shipyard during this interim period of operations.”

To leverage the shipyard’s improvements stemming from the settlement, the port commission has authorized staff to put out bids for a new shipyard operator and an opportunity to lease 15 acres of land with several buildings, more than 17 acres of submerged land and cranes, a shore power system and other port-owned equipment.

The facilities encompass Piers 68 and 70 and Seawall Lot 349 near 20th Street and Illinois Street, including Dry Dock Eureka and Dry Dock #2.

A new lease could be approved as early as October, the port said.

“These two actions by the port commission will encourage the shipyard to remain operational and provide employment opportunities for San Francisco workers,” said Port Commission President Willie Adams. “We will continue to act quickly, so the local union jobs return to our shipyard and city.”

The port and BAE SF entered into a 20-year lease that began May 1, 2015. Then in December 2016, BAE’s parent company agreed to transfer its corporate shares, assets and interests in the shipyard to Puglia Engineering, Inc., which filed a notice of imminent closure of the shipyard at Pier 70 in February 2017.

The port and Puglia worked out an interim agreement to keep operations at the shipyard going through May to protect local jobs.