PORTLAND, Maine — The Portland shipyard will receive nearly $1 million from the U.S. Department of Transportation to replace an aging boat lift.

Democratic Rep. Chellie Pingree says the federal small shipyard grant will help alleviate problems the shipyard has had serving Casco Bay’s commercial fleet. She says the Portland area’s economy relies on having the shipyard able to get boats back on the water quickly.

Pingree says the shipyard’s aging lift frequently needs repairs, which causes delays and other problems for commercial vessels in the area. Ships in the area include commercial fishing boats, ferries and emergency service vessels.

Pingree says the shipyard’s current mobile boat hoist has sustained down time on at least 225 days since the start of 2014. Heavier vessels also test the limits of its capacity.