Thursday, July 26, 2007

Port Authority's state money may mean good news for Erie Shipbuilding, Oglebay Norton for sale, RESERVE due for barge conversion

According to an article in today's Erie Times-News the state's recently passed budget includes $2.6 million for the Erie Port Authority. According to the article some of this money may be used to replace a door on the drydock at Erie Shipbuilding, and replace a dock wall there. I believe the dock wall in question is in the Parade Street slip immediately adjacent to Oglebay Norton's Old Ore Dock.

In other Erie Shipbuilding news, Hull 101, the new dumpscow under construction for an East Coast firm, should taste water for the first time during the second half of August.

Oglebay Norton on Tuesday issued a press release stating that the company, to "maximize shareholder value" is looking into a possible sale or merger of the company. Thursday they announced that they are reviewing New York private-equity firm Harbinger's $31.00 per share offer for the company.

No idea what this means for O.N. Minerals' Erie Operation, which has already been rumored in local maritime circles to be up for sale. What this means for the future of commercial shipping in Erie remains to be seen. I will continue to follow this situation.

Steamer RESERVE, a frequent Erie visitor, has two more trips before laying up in Menominee, Michigan for conversion to a barge.

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