The local maritime industry will be all ears this week when the Army Corps of Engineers gives a fresh update on the status of the critical Charleston Harbor deepening project.
The federal permitting agency is inviting the public to attend the forum 5:30-8 p.m. Tuesday at Mark Clark Hall at The Citadel. The formal presentation begins at 6 p.m.
In its first update since December 2011, the Army Corps said it will be presenting new information. The public will have a chance to comment.
The Army Corps’ $13 million feasibility study is part of the $300 million project to dredge Charleston’s shipping channel to 50 feet from 45 feet. Officials have said the additional depth is needed to accommodate larger vessels, especially once the Panama Canal is expanded in 2015.
Catching an Indians home game from the Lowcountry will be slightly easier for about two months this summer.
United Continental Holdings Inc. said last week it will be offering seasonal Saturday-only service between Charleston International and Cleveland Hopkins International Airport starting June 29.
The United Express flights will be operated by ExpressJet using 50-seat aircraft, said United spokeswoman Mary Clark. The service ends Aug. 24.
United also offers local travelers service to and from Chicago, Houston, Newark Liberty in New Jersey and Dulles International near Washington, D.C.
In what has become an annual springtime migration, Daniel Island software firm Benefitfocus will take up residence on the peninsula this week to host its customer and health-care benefits industry conference.
The three-day event, called “One Place,” kicks off Wednesday morning at the Charleston Music Hall with CEO Shawn Jenkins’ keynote address, which, in the tradition of Steve Jobs and Apple, generally features product updates and on-stage banter with customers.
The action, workshops on particular applications and using social media or big data, will shift to Charleston Place for the rest of the conference, except for Wednesday night, when hundreds will descend on the S.C. Aquarium to unwind.
Among more technical talk, a hot topic of conversation is likely to be the status of Benefitfocus’ reported plans to go public later this year.
Earlier this year it was reported that the S.C. Legislature mistakenly erased three members off the Charleston County Aviation Authority.
Soon after, the House sprung into action and introduced a bill to reinstate North Charleston Mayor Keith Summey and board members Pat Waters and Spencer Pryor, all of whom were appointed to the board through special legislation adopted in the 1980s.
The House passed the bill in March and sent it to the Senate, where lawmakers attached an amendment that allows the majority of a legislative delegation that made an appointment to remove a board member.
More significantly, the Senate also added a section to repeal a 2007 law co-authored by Rep. Chip Limehouse that placed the chair and vice chair of the Charleston legislative delegation on the airport board.
Limehouse is chair of the local delegation and until this year held the same title at the Aviation Authority.
The 2007 law that enabled that triggered a lawsuit challenging the airport appointments of Limehouse and state Sen. Chip Campsen, the delegation’s vice chair. Campsen has said the law is unconstitutional and refuses to serve on the authority.
A judge tossed the lawsuit this year, though he has not yet signed the order. The plaintiffs have vowed to appeal.
The reinstatement bill made it back to the House last week, where members didn’t agree to the amendments, so it appears it’s now headed to a conference committee for compromise.
Deep thoughts: Harbor dredging study gets airing