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Transportation Law

President Bush signs Marine Highway Legislation

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 transportation projects to mitigate landside congestion. The program will encourage the development and expansion of vessels, shippers, port and landside infrastructure, and marine transportation strategies by state and local governments. Water transportation routes will be designated as extensions of the surface transportation system to focus public and private efforts to use the waterways to relieve landside congestion along coastal corridors. A project may be so designated if it offers a waterborne alternative to available landside transportation services using vessels and provides transportation services for passengers, freight or both. For designated transportation projects, the federal government will promote the use of waterborne transportation services as well as coordinate the development of landside facilities and infrastructure with ports, state departments of transportation, localities, other public agencies, and the private sector


Maritime Transportation Act Signed into Law

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


DHS: Limited Waiver of Coastwise Restrictions

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


Administrative Process For Jones Act Waivers

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


Hearing on New Orleans Oil Spill

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


Bill Promotes US LNG Vessel Transport

Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA-03), Ranking Member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure’s Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Subcommittee, introduced H.R. 5270, the Growing American Shipping Act, which aims to modernize U.S. LNG shipping export laws and strengthen the maritime industry. The Subcommittee’s Chairman, Congressman Duncan Hunter (R-CA-50), joined the legislation as an original cosponsor.


U.S. National Transportation Statistics 2002 Released

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


Field Hearing On Delaware Oil Spill

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)


Upcoming hearing on USCG and FMC budgets

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


TRB – Harbor Safety Committee Conference

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


WCI Applauds Barge Diesel Fuel User Fee Increase

Michael J. Toohey

Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) and its members and stakeholders applauded the Senate’s passage, by a vote of 76 to16, of a 9-cent increase to the barge diesel fuel user fee.  The provision was a part of tax extenders legislation that was combined with the “Achieving a Better Life


Boxco Moves Longest Column through Mumbai Port

With the completion of this project, Boxco Logistics broken another record and has enriched the company’s heavy lifts operations and engineering profile, opening doors for larger and more challenging turnkey projects

  Boxco Logistics has set the bar high yet again, by moving the LONGEST COLUMN EVER that was transported in and out of Mumbai Port. It all started in the industrial township of Dahej in the state of Gujarat at ISGEC Heavy Engineering’s manufacturing plant


Jaenichen Tours Port of Brownsville

Paul Jaenichen

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administrator Paul ‘Chip’ Jaenichen today visited the future site of a marine cargo dock at the Port of Brownsville made possible, in part, through a $12 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER)


HII Board of Directors Elects Two VPs

Kellye Walker (Photo: HII)

Huntington Ingalls Industries’ (HII) board of directors has elected Kellye Walker to serve as corporate vice president and general counsel and Charles R. “Chuck” Monroe Jr. to serve as corporate vice president, associate general counsel and secretary


Australia Monitoring Russian Naval Vessels

The Australian Defense Force said it is monitoring Russian naval vessels that are currently transiting through international waters to the north of Australia. In accordance with international law, Defiance has been monitoring the Russian vessels


MARAD Releases Port Planning and Investment Toolkit

New Toolkit Will Assist U.S. Ports in Securing Funding for Infrastructure Projects  The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) today released the first module of the Port Planning and Investment Toolkit, a manual designed to aid U.S


Crowley Wins 2nd Commercial LNG Supply Contract

Photo courtesy of Crowley

Crowley Maritime Corp.’s Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) services group has been awarded a second, multiyear contract to supply containerized, U.S.-sourced LNG to a pharmaceutical company’s manufacturing plants in Puerto Rico. The contract


The Legal Consequences of 46 CFR Subchapter “M”

Daniel J. Fitzgerald

As the holiday season and the end of another year quickly approaches, the towing industry patiently waits for the Coast Guard to finalize the long-awaited towing vessel inspection rule.  More than 10 years ago, Congress passed the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2004


How Difficult is it to Obtain a Jones Act Waiver?

The American Salvage Association’s Jon Waldron provides the ultimate cabotage primer. There always seems to be constant chatter about waiving the Jones Act. In reality, it is a simple task to demystify the thought that it is easy to obtain such waivers


EU: Ships Will Measure CO2 Emissions

Shippers to begin monitoring from 2018; Environmental groups say law is weak, shippers favorable. The shipping sector will for the first time have to monitor its carbon emissions under a law agreed by the European Union on Wednesday, intended as a step towards tackling a growing source of


Findland Fairway Due Law

  Based on the Finland Ministry of Transport and Communication’s maritime strategy, the Finnish parliament has announced a final and lawful decision on the new fairway due law as follows: - The new fairway due law is temporary, being effective 2015-2017


Proposed Rulemaking on Cruise Ship Terminal Security

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The Federal Register Wednesday published the U.S. Coast Guard’s notice of proposed rulemaking amending its regulations on cruise ship terminal security. This proposed rule would standardize screening activities for all persons, baggage and personal effects at cruise ship terminals while


US Navy Deploys Shipboard Laser Weapon

The Afloat Forward Staging Base (Interim) USS Ponce (ASB(I) 15) conducts an operational demonstration of the Office of Naval Research (ONR)-sponsored Laser Weapon System (LaWS) while deployed to the Arabian Gulf. (U.S. Navy photo by John F. Williams) Caption

 Officials at the Office of Naval Research (ONR) announced the laser weapon system (LaWS) - a cutting-edge weapon that brings new capabilities to America's Sailors and Marines - was for the first time deployed and operated aboard a naval vessel in the Arabian Gulf.  


Jones Act Gets Staunch Support

  The United States Congress this week enacted the strongest statement of support for the Jones Act and the American domestic maritime industry since the Merchant Marine Act of 1936. The measure was included as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (H.R


WCI Applauds Passage of New Barge Tax

Michael J. Toohey, PresidentCEO of Waterways Council, Inc.

  Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) and its members and stakeholders tonight applauded the Senate’s passage, by a vote of 76 to16, of a 9-cent increase to the barge diesel fuel user fee. The provision was a part of tax extenders legislation that was combined with the “Achieving a






 
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