Tuesday, July 27, 2010


For Immediate Release

For more information contact Martin Chaffin @ 870-338-1418

Re:  Port Authority Holds July Meeting

HELENA-WEST HELENA- The Phillips County Port Authority Board of Directors held its monthly meeting on Monday and heard industrial recruitment reports from Executive Director Martin Chaffin, financial reports from Treasurer Henry Richmond, and passed a resolution to have the Corp of Engineers dredge the harbor this year.

Chaffin reported that Uniserv, the newest company to locate at the harbor had begun its barge cutting operation.  Uniserv had announced approximately two months ago that it would be locating that business at the Helena Harbor.  Chaffin also reported that Rod Miller of RBE Arkansas had a team of potential investors in to look at the harbor.  Miller has been working with the Port Authority for two years on plans to construct at $1.6 billion facility at the harbor.  Those investors have recommended some changes to the potential first phase of construction, which is going to cost $550 million.  Chaffin said, "I continue to be optimistic about the financing possibilities for this project.  We continue to have discussions with investors and are making progress.  When this deal is done, it will transform the harbor and the local economy."

Richmond's treasurer's report showed the Port Authority to be in excellent financial condition.  Engineer Jim Frazier went over some adjustments suggested by the Corp of Engineers on disposal or use of dredge material from dredging the harbor.  The material is being used to gradually reclaim 24 acres of land for use.  The cost of the changes will be approximately $40000 and are largely for safety requirements.  As part of that discussion, the Port Authority unanimously passed a resolution for the Corps of Engineers to dredge the harbor in 2010.

Andrew Bagley 
(870) 995-6067
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Honorable James F. Valley
MAYOR - Helena West Helena
P O Box 248
226 Perry Street
Helena-West Helena, 72342
501-291-1735 Main Number
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870-817-4035 Cell
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