Scheduled to begin January 1, 2009 the “Infrastructure Cargo Fee” of US$15 for a 20 foot container (US$30 for a 40 footer) was established in January 2008 by harbour commissioners of the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. In the coming weeks, the Los Angeles Board of Harbour Commissioners is expected to approve a similar six-month delay.
In mid 2009, the Long Beach Harbour Commissioners plans to re-examine the status of the projects, which include upgrades to the ports’ rail network, replacement of the Gerald Desmond Bridge and other improvements that will facilitate traffic flow through the ports. The fee, collected by both ports, will generate US$1.4 bn. Along with matching funds from the statewide transportation measure Proposition 1B, about US$3bn worth of transportation projects are planned for the harbour area.
“Because of the extra time needed to complete the planning and approval process for these many projects, the ports felt it was sensible to delay the implementation of the fee,” said Long Beach deputy executive director Christopher Lytle. “We’ll reassess the situation in six months to see it if makes sense to start the fee then.”