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Duluth, MN 55802 
Harbor Technical Advisory Committee (HTAC)
The Harbor Technical Advisory Committee (HTAC) is one of three advisory committees to the MIC. Its mission is to:
Aerial photo of the Duluth-Superior harbor and Duluth hillside. Photo credit: USDA Forest Service, Superior National Forest, Gary Lidholm
  • Provide a forum for the discussion of issues and concerns pertaining to the Duluth-Superior harbor;
  • Promote the harbor’s economic and environmental importance to the community; and
  • Provide sound planning and management recommendations to the Metropolitan Interstate Council

  • The HTAC meets quarterly (see Meetings section, below) and brings together a large group of stakeholders to discuss and formulate recommendations addressing issues relevant to the Duluth-Superior harbor. Current topics include dredged material management, environmental restoration and enhancement activities, and land use development activities in the St. Louis River bay and estuary.

    HTAC Members
    The 31 voting members of the HTAC represent a wide range of harbor stakeholders including business owners, environmental groups and local, state and federal officials who are directly concerned with the planning, programming and implementation of issues pertaining to the harbors of Duluth and Superior. In addition, non-voting technical advisors from any member agency, organization or local government are encouraged to attend and participate in HTAC meetings.

    HTAC Meetings
    The HTAC meets quarterly, on the first Wednesday of March, June, September and December at locations that alternate between Duluth and Superior.

    Current Year Meeting Schedule

    December 3rd, 2014 Meeting Agenda
    December 3rd, 2014 Meeting Summary (pending approval)

    September 3rd, 2014 Meeting Agenda
    September 3rd, 2014 Meeting Summary

    June 4th, 2014 Meeting Agenda
    June 4th, 2014 Meeting Summary

    March 5th, 2014 Meeting Agenda
    March 5th, 2014 Meeting Summary

    Meeting Agendas and Minutes
    HTAC meeting agendas and meeting summaries are posted on this site as they become available:

    Browse Current Year

    Browse Previous Years

    HTAC as a Model for Other Port Communities
    As HTAC members communicate with other port communities, word is getting around about the value of our collaborative committee process. Most port communities face similar challenges such as managing dredged materials, cleaning up contaminated sediments and maintaining port infrastructure. Through creation of a harbor committee similar to HTAC, these communities could more effectively address these issues by bringing all stakeholders together. HTAC members have encouraged MIC staff to share the HTAC story with other port communities. The HTAC model has been presented at the following conferences:

      • Coastal Zone 2011 – Chicago, IL: July 18, 2011
      • Working Waterways & Waterfronts – Portland, ME: September 29, 2010
      • TRB Joint Summer Meeting Multimodal Freight/Waterways Track – Minneapolis, MN: July 12, 2010

    The presentations have included information about the MIC as the host agency and the HTAC mission, membership and the issues we face in the Duluth-Superior port. View an example presentation.

    Duluth and Superior Port Land Use Plans
    The Duluth and Superior Port Land Use Plans examine current land use and development issues along the waterfront in the Duluth and Superior harbors...more

    This article ran in the April-June 2014 issue of the Great Lakes/Seaway Review, featuring our HTAC (Harbor Technical Advisory Committee) and its role in fostering interagency collaboration and cooperation. Click the image if you would like to read it.
    HTAC Subcommittees and Working Groups
    The HTAC has several active subcommittees dedicated to addressing specific issues:
      Dredging Subcommittee/Erie Pier Management Plan
      The Dredging Subcommittee has recently completed a management plan for Erie Pier with the goal of extending the life of the facility...more

      Great Lakes Ports Advocacy Coalition
      The Great Lakes Ports Advocacy Coalition is working toward organizing advocacy efforts in Washington D.C. targeted at increasing funding for maintenance dredging and other water transportation infrastructure...more

    Harbor Related Research
    This section includes research reports that follow up on presentations at past HTAC meetings.

    The Economic Impacts of the Great Lakes – St. Lawrence Seaway System

    This economic impact study was designed to provide the navigation community, transportation planners, government policy makers and the general public with a realistic assessment of the contributions made by the Great Lakes-Seaway system to the state, provincial, regional and national economies. This is the first-ever study that measures the economic impacts of the Great Lakes-Seaway system to both nations, at the same time, using the same methodology. The report was released on October 18, 2011. View the executive summary. View the full report.

    The report authors are Martin Associates from Lancaster, PA. Martin Associates was retained to perform this analysis by a coalition of U.S. and Canadian Great Lakes- Seaway marine industry stakeholders. Study sponsors include: the St. Lawrence Seaway Management Corporation, the Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation, the Chamber of Marine Commerce, the American Great Lakes Ports Association, the Lake Carriers' Association, the Great Lakes Maritime Task Force, Algoma Central Corporation, Canada Steamship Lines, and Fednav Limited. Technical and project management assistance was provided by Transport Canada. The American Great Lakes Ports Association served as the contracting agent.

    Also read: Economic Impacts of the Port of Duluth-Superior

    Tax Systems and Barriers to Great Lakes Maritime Commerce

    "Tax Systems and Barriers to Great Lakes Maritime Commerce" by Randall Skalberg and James Skurla of the Labovitz School Business and Economics at the University of Minnesota Duluth. This research project inventoried the tax impact on the Great Lakes marine transportation system imposed by federal regulations focusing specifically on the Harbor Maintenance Tax. The findings suggest methods for increasing efficiency in the relationship between tax policy and commercial maritime operations. The study was funded by a grant from the Great Lakes Maritime Research Institute. View the report.

    For More Information
    Contact MIC Principal Planner Andy McDonald by phone at (218) 529-7514 or by e-mail.