Sen. Casey pushes to use Pennsylvania waterways for goods transportation

© Shutterstock

On Friday, U.S. Sen. Bob Casey (D-PA) said he is committed to investing in the region’s river communities.

In a letter to that region’s business leaders and elected officials, Casey reaffirmed his goal of promoting the communities and ensuring their economic success.

“Southwestern Pennsylvania’s waterways have been the bedrock of the region’s economy and carried the steel and coal that built and powered America for generations,” Casey said. “I’ve long championed investments in our Commonwealth’s waterways and I will continue to advocate for policies that will keep them navigable and a preferred means of transport as we build a stronger economy for families here and across the Nation.”

Casey said he plans to support the river communities through three different actions. The first is to incentivize greater use of the region’s waterways, and to boost the region’s economy by convening industry and government stakeholders to promote waterway freight diversification and economic development along the Ohio, Allegheny and Monongahela River Corridor. Additionally, he said he would put the region’s energy communities at the front of the line for new federal energy and manufacturing investments through the use of tax credits. And thirdly, he said he would stop river communities from being sealed off from waterways networks by preventing decreases in lockage hours along the Allegheny River.

“I understand that more federal support is needed to activate the waterways, including incentivizing the diversification of and general increase in freight movement along the rivers to ensure their viability in a twenty-first century economy,” Casey wrote.