Port Authority signs dredge permit agreement

Published: Thursday, September 19, 2013 at 08:55 AM.

“The cost of not doing anything, what a cost regionally,” Costin said.

Raffield said Eastern Shipbuilding and the announcement from more than a year ago that the company would be coming to Port St. Joe to establish a ship-outfitting facility has “left a bad taste in people’s eyes” as the company has yet to come to Gulf County.

He said the company is filling berths in Bay County and will need to expand, but the fact the company has yet to do so, while failing to communicate a clear timetable – the proposed arrival of Eastern has been pegged several times only to be pushed back – was a sore point.

“I don’t know who the quarterback is on that without any update,” Raffield said. “We don’t know what is going on.”

County Commissioner Warren Yeager, present for last week’s meeting of the Port Authority, said Eastern continues to pay its lease with St. Joe and remains committed to moving into Gulf County.

“It is about timing,” Yeager said. “At some point it is going to happen.”

Yeager also suggested that the Port Authority speak to the Economic Development Alliance, Inc. about possible assistance the EDA could provide the Port Authority to meet operational expenses.

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