The White House issued a Press Release stating, among other things, that President Bush signed into law the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004 (H.R. 2443). In addition to serving as the annual authorization act for the Coast Guard and the Federal Maritime Commission, this law inserts an exemption for certain passive owners (primarily institutional lenders) into OPA 90, mandates oil spill response plans for non-tank vessels in excess of 400 gross tons, and makes numerous other changes to U.S. maritime law. It is worth your careful read. (HK Law)
On Dec. 19, 2007, President George W. Bush signed into law the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007, which contains provisions establishing a formal marine highway program within the federal government. Under the new law, marine highway or "short sea" transportation refers to the carriage by vessel of cargo in containers, loaded on the vessel by cranes or by means of wheeled technology. Specifically, the new law requires the establishment of a program and the designation of
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the temporary waiver of compliance with coastwise trade restrictions to assist in the recovery from the effects of Hurricanes Rita and Katrina. The coastwise trade laws have been waived, until 12:01 a.m., October 24, 2005, for transportation of petroleum and refined petroleum products from one U.S. port to another U.S. port. The earlier waiver of coastwise trade laws for transportation of petroleum released from the Strategic Petroleum
The U.S. coastwise laws (primarily the Jones Act and the Passenger Vessel Services Act) require to carry cargo or passengers between U.S. ports, a vessel must be U.S.-flagged, U.S.-crewed, U.S.-built, and U.S.-owned. Traditionally, the only way for a non-qualified vessel to obtain the right to engage in domestic service has been for Congress to enact special legislation granting the privilege to the vessel by name. Public Law 105-383, enacted in November 1998
On September 16, the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure will conduct an oversight hearing on the Oil Spill in New Orleans in July 2008 and Safety on the Inland River System. Source: HK Law
The Puget Sound Harbor Safety Committee will host the 2008 Harbor Safety Committee Conference in Seattle on May 12-14. The conference offers an opportunity for HSCs and other stakeholders from around the country to exchange information on current challenges, best practices, case studies, and lessons learned and to engage both public and private executive leaders on issues relating to marine transportation. The conference is organized by the U.S
The U.S. Bureau of Transportation Statistics released the National Transportation Statistics 2002 In the maritime sector, the report notes that the number of U.S.-flag ocean-going vessels of 1,000 gross tons and over decreased from 2,926 in 1960 to 443 in 2001. The U.S. ocean-going tonnage decreased from 32,567,000 dwt to 14,978,000 dwt during this same period. Average vessel size rose from 11,130 dwt to 33,810 dwt. Source: HK Law
The Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure will conduct a hearing on March 4, 2004. The subcommittee will examine the Coast Guard and Federal Maritime Commission budget requests for FY 2005 and the Coast Guard Authorization Act for FY 2005. Source: HK Law
The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure released a Schedule stating that the Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation will conduct a field hearing in Philadelphia on January 18. The hearing will examine circumstances surrounding the recent oil spill in the Delaware River. (HK Law)
The Coast Guard is seeking applications for appointment to membership on the Chemical Transportation Advisory Committee (CTAC). The committee advises the agency on matters relating to the safe and secure transportation and handling of hazardous materials in bulk on US-flag vessels in US ports and waterways. Applications should be submitted by August 31. Source: HK Law
Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed a law on the liberalization of exports of liquefied natural gas (LNG). According to the document, two new categories of license holders are entitled to the right to export LNG, in addition to Gazprom, reports Arctic-Info.
The Dutch Foreign Ministry has finalised a bank guarantee of 3.6 million euros in compliance with a binding ruling by the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) ordering Russia to release the Greenpeace ship Arctic Sunrise and the Arctic 30 protesters.
The International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea has ordered the Russian Federation in a binding ruling to release the Greenpeace ship 'Arctic Sunrise' and the 28 activists and two freelance journalists on board upon payment of a EUR 3.6 million bond.
The National Freight Advisory Committee yesterday unanimously approved a recommendation to pass legislation that will ensure that the Harbor Maintenance Tax is utilized for its intended purpose - to keep the nation's harbors and channels dredged and maintained at their maximum authorized depth for
The Murmansk Regional Court has rejected an appeal against the arrest of the ship 'Arctic Sunrise' by Russian authorities reports Greenpeace. "This is an extremely disappointing ruling. We believe this verdict is in violation of both the Russian Criminal Procedure Code and international law
“Security in this region [off the coast of Nigeria] is often not sufficient,” says maritime piracy attorney Dennis McElwee “Unfortunately, maritime companies are not always taking the necessary precautions to protect crewmembers from this type of attack
Can you imagine the public outcry if our country’s major interstates were not repaved or patched for 50, 60 or 70 years, and at the same time, regulations were introduced that encouraged wildlife to nest and repopulate on the road surface
Dennis L. Bryant retired from the U.S. Coast Guard with the rank of Captain after 27 years active duty. His billets included serving on the icebreaker NORTHWIND for several years including in 1969 when it escorted the tanker MANHATTAN through the Northwest Passage (this was back in the old days
Regarding the upcoming hearing at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), where the Netherlands is bringing a case seeking the release of the Greenpeace ship 'Arctic Sunrise' and its crew, Greenpeace International General Counsel Jasper Teulings informs: Background
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Maritime Administration (MARAD) today dedicated the California Green Trade Corridor. The Corridor will help take freight traffic off California’s congested I-580 by offering shippers an option to move cargo along the waterways between
The Panel on 21st Century Freight Transportation published its final report on United States freight transportation, offering an assessment of its current condition with recommendations for strengthening nationwide infrastructure and U.S. economy.
The American Waterways Operators, the national trade association representing the U.S. tugboat, towboat and barge industry, praised yesterday’s bipartisan passage of H.R. 3080, the Water Resources Reform Development Act, as a clear commitment to improving the nation’s ports and
The American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) lauded leaders of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, leaders of its Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee and Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) for their efforts in advancing H.R
A recent ruling by the U.S. Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals clears the way for seaman to recover punitive damages in unseaworthiness claims, according to Jones Act attorney Matthew Shaffer. In the facts of the case, McBride v. Estis Well Serv., L.L.C., No
The continued existence of the Merchant Marine Act of 1920 carries with it substantial economic and financial benefits. Its repeal could be catastrophic. The three-legged stool commonly referred to as the Jones Act is officially known as the Merchant Marine Act of 1920