Portman, Brown Praise Senate Passage of Bill to Restore Delta Queen Steamboat to Ohio River

April 3, 2017 | Press Releases

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sens. Rob Portman (R-OH) and Sherrod Brown (D-OH) praised Senate passage of legislation that would clear the way for the Delta Queen, a U.S. National Historic Landmark, to once again carry passengers on overnight trips on the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers. 

The Delta Queen is an important part of the Queen City’s history,” said Portman. “I remember riding on the Delta Queen as a young boy, and I am proud to help lead the bipartisan effort to keep it afloat.  Today’s vote means the Delta Queen is one step closer to getting back in business and helping to promote economic activity along the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, including in Cincinnati.” 

The Delta Queen is not just a treasured Cincinnati landmark – its return to the river is an opportunity to create jobs and boost tourism revenue,” said Brown. “Senator Portman and I will keep working on this effort until Ohio passengers and visitors to our state can embark on this historic steamboat from our Queen City.”

NOTE: Portman and Brown have helped lead efforts in the United States Senate to pass this legislation, introducing legislation in each of the last four Congresses that would bring this historic steamboat back to the Queen City.  The 1966 Safety at Sea law prohibits wooden ships of a certain size—like the Delta Queen—from carrying passengers on overnight trips. This legislation would require new safety requirements and grant an exemption of this rule through 2028, which was standard practice until 2008.  The Delta Queen is currently undergoing renovations in Houma, Louisiana but was owned by a Cincinnati company from 1946 to 1985.  Companion legislation has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by U.S. Rep. Steve Chabot (R-OH).