The Stimpson administration is presenting a lease agreement this morning to the city council. In it, Austal would lease the dock space outside the cruise terminal for seven months. They would pay standard docking charges along with $200,000 worth of electrical improvements.
“Primarily that’s establishing shore power which will be available for other ships once Austal’s done they’ll also be paying the utilities that they incur while so it’s a good deal for the city no question about it,” said city spokesman George Talbot. City officials say this won’t interfere with Carnival’s return or any events already planned at the terminal building. It’s hard to say how much money this will bring in for the city. In December of 2013, the USS Coronado stayed at the cruise terminal for 24 hours. The city sent an invoice to Austal for $3,615.18. $2,420.00 was for security.
Austal officials are looking forward to the partnership. This statement was sent to News 5 over the weekend:
“Austal is interested in partnering with the City of Mobile on a temporary lease of the bulkhead located at the city’s cruise terminal to use as additional parking for our ships until we complete our vessel completion yard next year. The City of Mobile has been a tremendous partner in our efforts to build the Littoral Combat Ship and Expeditionary Fast Transport (formerly Joint High-Speed Vessel) for the U.S. Navy and we greatly appreciate their support.” – Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle
It is unlikely the Mobile City Council will vote on this today. New items are rarely acted upon the first time they appear on the council’s agenda.