Lewiston port details revenue from megaloads

By ELAINE WILLIAMS of the Tribune

The Port of Lewiston netted more than $500,000 from Imperial Oil megaloads in its most recent fiscal year.

The $500,772 figure was released in a recent audit of the port and was pointed out by David Doeringsfeld, the port’s manager.

The number doesn’t include another $396,233 in expenses the port had for the modules of a processing plant under construction in the Kearl Oil Sands of Alberta, Canada.

Most of that was for a security force comprised of locals that, at its height, numbered 19, Doeringsfeld said.

It also doesn’t take into account additional revenue the port received since June 30 when its fiscal year ended, Doeringsfeld said. The manager predicts less revenue for this year.

The money will be used for infrastructure that supports job creation, Doeringsfeld said. One of the projects the port is pursuing is a $2.9 million expansion of its 125-foot dock, which would more than double its length. The port has saved almost $1 million for the upgrade, Doeringsfeld said.

The port rejected previous requests from the Tribune for information about how much it was profiting from the Imperial megaload shipments.

Doeringsfeld said the port had always been willing to share the totals in the audit, but that the Tribune’s queries had been so specific, answering them would have given other ports information they could have used to steal the business by undercutting Lewiston’s rates.

In a related matter, Doeringsfeld said he hasn’t been talking to anyone from Harvest Energy, a company that has been in touch this week with the Idaho Transportation Department about shipping megaloads to the oil sands in Canada.

That same company previously looked at hauling 40 to 60 shipments, which take up two lanes of the roadway, and had asked about conditions on U.S. Highway 12.

ITD hasn’t indicated the volume of oversize rigs Harvest Energy wants to move.

Williams may be contacted at [email protected] or (208) 848-2261.

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