The Inland Waterways Gateway region encompasses all or portions of twenty-three (23) States. The Inland Waterways Gateway Office – Paducah supports nine of those states adjacent to the navigable rivers to include all or a portion of Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania (Pittsburgh area rivers), Tennessee, and West Virginia. The region also encompasses the commercially navigable rivers: the Ohio River from its headwaters in Pennsylvania to its’ Mouth at Cairo, IL; the Lower Mississippi River from Cairo, IL to Memphis, TN; the McClellan–Kerr Arkansas River Navigation System from the Tulsa Port of Catoosa southeast through Oklahoma and Arkansas to the Mississippi River; and the Tennessee and Cumberland Rivers from their confluence with the Ohio River through Tennessee.
This region includes 20 port authorities with associated river ports, regional waterways, intermodal connections and corridors.
The office is primarily concerned with inland: marine transportation, ports, intermodal connectivity, vessel operations and service providers, and marine security.
The Gateway Director serves as an expert on all regional and local maritime issues to include disaster response/recovery, financing for port infrastructure, marine highway development, and support for American shipbuilding companies. In addition to coordinating with the private sector, the Director also serves as Agency liaison to regional Federal, state and local government agencies.