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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

House Subcommittee News

Digimarc to Testify at House Subcommittee Hearing

Digimarc Vice President of Public Policy Tom Gann will testify at the House Subcommittee on Border, Maritime, and Global Counterterrorism Hearing on Frequent Traveler Programs, appearing as an industry expert on ID security. Gann will present the positive results from the U.S. Department of Transportation digital watermarking pilot in the State of Nebraska and demonstrate how proven digital watermarking-based solutions can be implemented as a cost-effective means of authenticating driver licenses presented as proof of identity at U.S. borders.

Cummings to Convene TWIC Hearing

Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, will convene a Subcommittee hearing on the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) card. The purpose of the hearing is to receive an update on the enrollment process as well as the process for applicants with past criminal convictions to apply for waivers, making them eligible to receive the TWIC card. In addition to a general overview of the TWIC enrollment process, the hearing will also focus specifically on the experiences of the Port of Baltimore in TWIC enrollment.

U.S. House Bill Approving LNG Exports

A U.S. House subcommittee voted on Wednesday to advance a bill that would eliminate the need for government approval of U.S. liquefied natural gas exports to countries that belong to the World Trade Organization.   The legislation, which will be considered by the full House energy committee, would essentially end the Energy Department's review of LNG export applications. (Reporting by Ayesha Rascoe; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)

GAO Releases Testimony on Container Security

The U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO) released its Testimony at the recent field hearing of the House Subcommittee on National Security. The GAO stated that it found current programs to detect illegal fissile material to be limited. It also commented on recent cargo security initiatives and continuing challenges. Source: HK Law

CG Acquisition Improvements

On March 24, Congressman Elijah E. “The first hearing I convened during my tenure as the Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation two years ago examined the mismanagement of the Coast Guard’s $24 billion Deepwater program intended to modernize the service’s surface and air assets. As confirmed at this morning’s hearing, the Coast Guard has taken significant steps since 2007 to improve the oversight and management of its acquisition programs and to position itself to effectively manage contractors and protect taxpayers’ investments in Coast Guard assets. “I was very pleased to learn of the agreement…

House Panel Passes Gas Exploration Bill

A proposed state energy bill that supports oil and natural gas exploration off the Virginia coast was approved by a House subcommittee, lending more momentum to advocates seeking to lift an offshore drilling ban. The U.S. Department of the Interior targeted Virginia because of its willingness to entertain renewed offshore activity. Most other coastal states, including North Carolina, have said they want to leave the moratorium in place, imposed in 1990 because of environmental concerns. Anti-drilling lobbying groups said the proposal is all about leverage and that the oil industry of using Virginia to break the coastwide moratorium so that richer reserves off New England and North Carolina’s Outer Banks might be accessible. The state energy bill, sponsored by Sen. Frank W.

Transportation Bill Passes Senate

The Senate passed the Department of Transportation appropriations bill, which includes funding for the USCG. The bill, passed in June by the House, had been held up in the Senate by controversies over mass transit and highway funding, as well as requirements for automobile fuel efficiency. The Senate bill funds the USCG at $4 billion for FY 00, a level similar to the House measure, and approximately $93 million more than last year. Preliminary discussion have been taking place between House and Senate staff members regarding the Energy and Water Development appropriations bill, which funds the USACE's civil works program. These talks have been prompted by a tentative House leadership decision to allocate an additional $1.2 billion to the House subcommittee for the bill.

Congressional Appropriations Underway

Congress has begun the FY 00 appropriations process as both House and Senate committees made their 302(b) allocations and began to consider individual appropriations bills at the subcommittee and committee level. The 302(b) allocations are the method by which the appropriations committees divide te funds approved in the budget resolution among the 13 appropriations subcommittees. These allocations become the "pot" from which each subcommittee must dispense monies to various programs within their jurisdiction. The Energy and Water Development Subcommittee, which appropriates money for USACE programs, received $21.1 billion in appropriations in FY 99. This year, the Senate subcommittee received $21.3 billion and the House, only $19.4 billion.

USCG Leaders Testify on Budget Requests

U.S. Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Paul Zukunft and Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Steven Cantrell testified Wednesday on the Coast Guard's Fiscal Year 2016 budget request before the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation. Zukunft led his testimony by sharing his perspectives on the increasing demands the service is facing as four strategic trends converge on the Coast Guard in unprecedented ways. Those include combating transnational organized crime networks and securing our borders, safeguarding commerce, enhancing cybersecurity and adapting in the polar regions. Zukunft stated that his highest investment priority is recapitalizing the aging Medium Endurance Cutter fleet with the Offshore Patrol Cutter.

SC Eyes Offshore Exploration

With offshore oil and gas exploration becoming a hot topic in South Carolina, the House is poised to debate a bill on May 16 that authorizes a study of gas exploration off the state's coast. The bill calls for a committee to study the feasibility of natural gas exploration off the state's coast and to report by Jan. 13. A bill allowing gas exploration, currently banned off the East coast, passed a U.S. House subcommittee last week. Critics who oppose oil and gas exploration off the coast argue that alternative energy and conservation means should be exhausted first. The bill cites proposals in Congress to offer incentives to states to allow gas exploration, saying the fuel is clean and in high demand.

Hearing on CG Acquisitions Process

Today, March 24, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, convened the Subcommittee to examine steps the Coast Guard has taken to reform and strengthen the policies and procedures it utilizes to manage acquisition processes. Specifically, the hearing examined the extent to which the Coast Guard will be positioned to exercise effective oversight of acquisition efforts as a result of new reforms implemented in response to extensive criticism of its management of the $24b Deepwater program. Over the past two years, the Coast Guard has moved to restructure its acquisition management systems…

Coast Guard Commandant Testifies Before House, Senate Subcommittees

Admiral Bob Papp (Photo: U.S. Coast Guard)

WASHINGTON — Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Bob Papp testified before the U.S. House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security on the Coast Guard’s Fiscal Year 2013 Budget Request, Tuesday. Papp is scheduled to appear before the Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and the Coast Guard on Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. and is also scheduled to testify, along with Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Michael Leavitt, before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Marine Transportation at 10 a.m.

American Rivers calls for Review of Corps Studies

Independent review of U.S. by American Rivers to the House of Representatives. The House Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment examined the use of peer review to ensure scientifically and economically sound decision-making at the Corps and other federal agencies. "Independent review, just one of many needed reforms, is necessary to break the agency's disturbing pattern of flawed economic and environmental analysis," said Melissa Samet, senior director of water resources at American Rivers. "The evidence is overwhelming. The demand is mounting. Congress must act to enforce legitimate and meaningful Corps of Engineers reforms, including requiring independent review of costly or controversial Corps projects," Samet said.

Congress Maritime Safety Hearing: PortVision CEO Testifies

Dean Rosenberg testifies: Photo PortVision

Maritime industry business intelligence provider PortVision says that its CEO, Dean Rosenberg, testified before the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation. "Yesterday I was honored to have the opportunity to testify before the US House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation. The purpose of the hearing was to focus on new ocean technologies, how these technologies can improve government performance, and any impediments that exist in the use of these technologies.

Rodriguez Appointed Deputy Maritime Administrator

Mike Rodriguez

Mike Rodriguez, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy Alum, was sworn in as Deputy Administrator of the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration (MARAD). Rodriguez has more than 35 years experience as a maritime industry professional in both the public and private sectors. He joins MARAD from the Navy’s National Maritime Intelligence-Integration Office. Prior to that, he served in the Military Sealift Command and in other active duty tours in the Navy. He has also served…

Coast Guard Asked to Address Racial Intolerance

Following the discovery of two nooses placed among the personal effects of a student and officer at the United States Coast Guard Academy, Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, called upon Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Thad Allen to address the full Academy and thoroughly investigate the incidents. The Academy announced that it will be expanding training on race relations following the discovery of the nooses—one found in the bag of an African-American cadet, and the second in the office of a white female officer who led training on race relations in response to the first incident. Congressman Cummings has applauded the training but feels it is not enough.

Cummings to Join Kick-Off of MERC

On July 22 Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (Md.-7), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, will join the Maryland Department of Transportation, the Maryland Port Administration, the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science, and the U.S. Maritime Administration aboard the MV Cape Washington to announce the kick-off of an important new research and testing project, the Maritime Environmental Resource Center (MERC). MERC has been organized to help prevent the spread of invasive aquatic species into the Chesapeake Bay and other water bodies in the . Specifically, the scientists at MERC will test the effectiveness of systems designed to safely treat ballast water before it is discharged from ships' ballast tanks.

MCPON Testifies Before House Subcommittee

Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON)(SW/FMF) Joe R. Campa Jr. testified, Feb. 7, before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction, which oversees all military construction projects, quality of life and veterans affairs related matters. Campa appeared with senior enlisted leaders from the Marine Corps, Army and Air Force in the two-hour hearing, and told the committee that conversations with Navy families he's had the last twelve months centered around what he referred to as three pillars of support: health care, child care and housing. He added that world events have led to a greater need for more consistent focus on supporting the Navy family.

Cummings: Significant Improvements Needed at FMC

Congressman Elijah E. “Our nation’s maritime industry requires a Federal Maritime Commission that can move quickly to analyze critical regulatory issues and render fair and impartial decisions. I am deeply concerned that the four individuals serving as Commissioners of the FMC are not effectively working together to manage its business and reach this end. “Clearly, there will be challenges present in any agency with a vacancy in the position of its Chairman, but the testimony of the FMC Commissioners today suggests that these individuals do not have visibility over all of the decisions made in their names and have not made the commitment necessary to exercise their shared duties in a responsible manner.

Congress to Probe Crime on Cruise Ships

Ahead of a House hearing to tackle the issue of crime aboard cruise ships, a congressional memo on March 7 details 177 sexual misconduct incidents, ranging from inappropriate touching to rape, and four robberies of amounts over $5,000 over a three-year period. During that time, approximately 25 million people embarked on cruises from North America ports, the memo said. Disclosure of the data, supplied by Holland America Lines, Royal Caribbean Cruises and others, is unusual because cruise lines are not required by law to publish comprehensive crime statistics and criminal law varies greatly on international waters. Rep. Christopher Shays, R-Conn., wants to change that and, as chairman of the House Subcommittee on National Security, is working on legislation to make such reporting mandatory.

House Passes NDAA with Cummings Amendment

Congressman Elijah E. Cummings (D-Md.), Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, joined his colleagues in a vote of 389-22 to approve the National Defense Authorization Act, H.R. 2647, which included a Cummings amendment that would require the Department of Defense to protect U.S.-flagged ships at risk of being boarded by pirates. “We would never leave the U.S. homeland unguarded if it were at risk of an attack, and we should apply this same standard to our ships instead of leaving them to fend for themselves,” Congressman Cummings said. As the number of incidents of piracy in the Horn of Africa region continues to rise, U.S.-flagged vessels are increasingly at risk of being hijacked.

Cummings Supports Coast Guard’s Educational Partnership

Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform and former Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation, will join Coast Guard senior leaders and the President of Morgan State University, Dr. David Wilson, on Tuesday, November 1st, aboard the newly delivered Coast Guard National Security Cutter STRATTON to sign a partnership agreement that will provide new academic opportunities to Morgan State University’s students and faculty…

AWO's Allegretti to Push AMP Agenda at House Hearing

AMP to Testify on Administration’s Failure to Comply With Federal Law During 2011 SPR Draw Down; Will Stress How to Avoid a Repeat During Future Draw Downs. Thomas Allegretti will testify on behalf of the American Maritime Partnership regarding the Administration’s failure to comply with federal law during the summer 2011 draw down of the Strategic Petroleum Oil Reserve (SPR) before House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation. Allegretti will discuss how the Administration can be in compliance with the federal law during future SPR draw downs.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Dec 2017 - The Great Ships of 2017

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