Hosemann concedes harbor revenue to Gulfport

Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann has conceded Gulfport can keep all revenue from businesses that move in around the harbor, and he will require a lease between the city and his office only for water bottoms in Gulfport’s harbor, Gulfport Council President Ricky Dombrowski said.

The city and Hosemann have been in negotiations over the harbor and surrounding property deeded decades ago to Gulfport. Hosemann contends the State Tidelands Act of 1989 gives him authority, with the governor’s permission, to require leases with municipalities for their harbors. The state holds tidelands in trust for the public.

Gulfport balked at a lease, especially because Hosemann wanted a percentage of subleases between the city and harbor businesses. The money would go into the state Tidelands Fund to be spent on Coast projects.

Sun Herald