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Privatizing Operations of Port of Wilmginton in Jeopardy

Port of Wilmington DE 3 X 5.jpg

DOVER, Del. (AP) - A bill giving the General Assembly veto power over privatizing operations at the Port of Wilmington is heading to a House committee.

The bill, which narrowly cleared the Senate last week, was slated for a hearing Wednesday by the House economic development committee.

The legislation, opposed by Gov. Jack Markell's administration, prevents the state-controlled Diamond State Port Corporation from agreeing to privatize or lease the port without approval from both chambers of the Legislature.

Delaware economic development director Alan Levin, who chairs the port corporation, urged senators to delay action on the bill, saying it could upset negotiations with Houston-based energy company Kinder Morgan.

Levin said he was even more troubled by an amendment that prohibits Kinder Morgan from assigning any privatization agreement to a third party without legislative consent.

Don Rush is the News Director at Delmarva Public Media. An award-winning journalist, Don reports major local issues of the day, from sea level rise, to urban development, to the changing demographics of Delmarva.