JEFFERSONVILLE, IN (WAVE) – The U.S. Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration announced Wednesday morning 12 shipyards in 10 states have received part of a $9.46 million grant.
Jeffboat, the largest inland shipbuilder in the U.S., received $845,817 which will bring more than 100 jobs and allow the company to re-construct and reopen their fourth production line.
Although they only manufacture dry hopper and tank barges at the moment, Jeffboat has the capacity to also produce tow boats and vessels. Patrick Sutton, vice president of Jeffboat, said many companies prefer to use barges and the demand is growing. Sutton said barges are greener and more economical than any other transportation.
"We have less emission, we have less fuel, we can move any product at one time than any other transportation, and we support that right here at Jeffboat," said Sutton.
"It's American labor building American vessels employing American mariners moving American products," said Chip Jaenichen, Maritime Administrator.
Sutton said they expect to begin construction on the fourth production line in seven days.