The SS United States Conservancy released the following statement today upon conclusion of a meeting of its Board of Directors concerning the immediate future of America's Flagship, the SS United States.
The meeting follows a decision by the Board at the beginning of October to retain the services of a broker to explore the sale of the historic vessel to a recycler over concerns about the organization's long-term ability to continue financing the upkeep of the ship in the absence of firm redevelopment commitments and capital. The Board had originally set an October 31st deadline for determining the historic vessel's fate.
"At the beginning of October, the SS United States Conservancy's Board of Directors made the difficult decision to engage a broker to explore the possible sale of the SS United States. That decision was made in an effort to ensure that our organization was being as financially responsible as possible given the persistent challenge of covering the vessel's $60,000 monthly carrying costs. Since that time, there has been an outpouring of support worldwide that demonstrates the importance of America's Flagship to a growing, global community. The ship has garnered major media attention from outlets at the local, national and international levels. While the numbers are not yet final, the Conservancy has raised well over $100,000 as a result of this global call to action. These resources have given us some additional time to advance our redevelopment plans in conjunction with several potential partners. Those discussions and negotiations have picked up momentum in recent weeks as well.
"Progress has been made due to your commitment and we are still compiling the necessary information to help the Board fully and responsibly evaluate our current situation from a financial and redevelopment standpoint. As a result, the Board has opted to defer any additional determination about the ship's immediate future until later this month.
"Clearly, your support and commitment has given us some flexibility in our timing. During this week and next, we hope to continue to build on the momentum created over the past month to extend the life of the ship and to advance our ongoing efforts to ultimately save her. The recent outpouring of public and media support is a testament to the viability of our shared goals for America's Flagship. We are profoundly grateful for all you have done, and we ask that you continue to help us build momentum during this crucial time."
Those interested in making a tax-deductible contribution to the SS United States Conservancy can do so at www.SSUSC.org.