The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners announced Friday that a $1.6 billion budget has been approved for next fiscal year, but it is expecting a slight decrease in funding for the Port of Los Angeles.
“While the Port of Los Angeles achieved record cargo volumes in 2018, this budget takes a purposeful and measured approach as we move into the next fiscal year,” said Jaime Lee, president of the Harbor Commission, in a news release.
The budget forecasts a slight decrease in cargo volumes compared with last year and, therefore, a decrease in operating revenues and operating expenses.
Operating receipts fund the port’s day-to-day operations, and revenues from them are estimated to decrease by 1.9% from last year, totaling $499.7 million. This estimate is based on an expected cargo volume of 9.4 million TEUs (20-foot equivalent units). The majority of receipts, $409 million or 81.8%, are expected to come from shipping services. The board is also decreasing its operating expenses by 0.8%, a total of $278 million.
“Diligently pursuing the Port’s Strategic Plan objectives while maintaining financially sound management practices is our top priority for this budget,” said Marla Bleavins, the port’s deputy executive director and chief financial officer.
The Port’s Capital Improvement Program budget was increased from last year, and the board cited the various infrastructure improvements, terminal and rail projects underway or in the design phase.
The Port has allocated $144.4 million to capital improvement projects, a 58.8% increase, the release stated. Of that amount, $64.7 million will go to terminal improvements, $38 million to maritime services, $11.7 million to transportation upgrades and $8.5 million to security-related projects.
Another $21.5 million will be allocated to LA Waterfront projects, the majority of which will be spent on public-access infrastructure projects with funding additional funding in continued maintenance and programming of the LA Waterfront, a fund that totals more than $40 million annually.
The Port of Los Angeles facilitated $297 billion in trade during 2018, the release stated.
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