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Business & Industry
Board of Trustees of the Galveston Wharves
by Jim Guidry
Monday, July 25, 2011

The Board of Trustees of the Galveston Wharves today voted unanimously to accept the portfolio performance analysis report, investment performance report and investment detail of the Galveston Wharves Pension Plan from the Frost Bank Trust Department.

 

“The total portfolio had a value on June 30th of $9.4 million,” said Freddie Meyers. “It consisted of 85 percent in equities, eight percent in fixed income  and seven percent in cash equivalents.” Listen: MP3 RealPlayer

 

Meyers said the market was “very flat’ in the second quarter, but “when you look at the one year number, you’ve really had a very good year.  The portfolio is up 28.04 percent. Net of fees it is 23.33 percent.”

 

Harris “Shrub” Kempner, president of Kempner Capital Management reviewed the national and international picture. Listen: MP3 RealPlayer

 

“This is one of those moments when I get up here and say ‘Don’t ask me!’,” Kempner said, referring to the outcome of the debit limit debate in Washington, D.C. and the economic forecast he published on July 5. “When I wrote this my perception was that the U.S. Congress and the President and the administration would have agreed to a raising of the debt limit.”

 

Kempner said the resolution of the crisis will determine how the United States is perceived in this country and throughout the world.

 

“We are indulging in what – the best thing I can describe it as – is amateur hour,” Kempner said. “But it is amateur hour with an extraordinary price to pay.”

The wharves board voted to approve an amendment to the Board Management Policy to allow approval of Pier 19 Charter Area berthing leases by the port director.

The board deferred a review of the port's parking revenue procedures until a special meeting on Friday.

The board approved (Correct) a new mutual aid law enforcement agreement with the City of Galveston until a future meeting.

The board took no action on an agenda item dealing with options available with respect to collection of insurance proceeds payable for Hurricane Ike claims.

Port Director Steve Cernak reported that operating revenue during the month of June was $1,771,064 and operating expenses was $1,224,879, resulting in net operating income of $546,185 for the month.

 

Two representatives of the International Longshoremen’s Association appeared before the wharves board to request that the license that the port previously granted to Superior Stevedoring Services for the operation by John L. Sullivan at Pier 39 be rescinded.  Listen: MP3 RealPlayer

 

“Instead of the licensee using a local labor force, Sullivan Stevedoring has decided to retain a workforce from outside of Galveston,” said Jay Cromie of ILA Local 1665. “This is and will continue to create problems for our local dock workers and will be of no economic help to our local community.”

Former wharves board member Don Suderman was recognized by the board for his six years of service to the port.

 

All other agenda items were approved.  All votes were unanimous with Benny Holland and Robert Hoskins absent.  John Manlove left the meeting during the executive session.




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