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Wednesday, January 17, 2018

State Of South Carolina News

FMC Dismisses Action Against SC State Port Authority

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued an Order dismissing the proceeding against the South Carolina State Port Authority based on the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision that the state port authority, as an agency of the state of South Carolina, was entitled to sovereign immunity from complaints brought by citizens of another state in a federal forum. South Carolina Maritime Services, Inc. v. South Carolina State Ports

FMC Motion for Reconsideration Denied

The Federal Maritime Commission (FMC) issued an order denying petitioners Projects, Inc. and Ports, LLC motion to file a reply memorandum and denying a motion for reconsideration in the complaint against various parties including South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA). An earlier order had determined that SCSPA was an arm of the State of South Carolina and entitled to sovereign immunity. The Commission also granted the motion of SCSPA to be removed as a party from the case caption. Docket No. 99-16 Source: HK Law

After Florida, more States Press US for Offshore Drilling Exemptions

© Steven Frame / Adobe Stock

Governors and other officials from several U.S. coastal states ramped up pressure on the Trump administration on Wednesday to exempt their waters from an offshore drilling plan, hours after the Interior Department granted Florida's request to opt out. The backlash could complicate President Donald Trump's efforts to expand oil and gas production offshore. A proposed leasing plan unveiled last week aims to open up all U.S. coasts to drillers over the next five years. Alaska and Maine are the only two U.S. states whose governors have expressed support for the plan.

Carnival Cruise Sued Over Harbor Traffic

According to a report from Reuters, preservation groups in the state of South Carolina filed a lawsuit against Carnival Cruise Lines, claiming the company's ships pollute Charleston and threaten its historic charm. The suit alleges that cruise ships violate local zoning ordinances and state laws and result in noise, air pollution, traffic congestion and blocked views.   Source: Reuters

Bethea to Lead Jasper Port Board

Members of the bi-state board leading the development of a deepwater port in Jasper County unanimously elected William L. Bethea Jr. of Hilton Head, South Carolina, to chair the Jasper Ocean Terminal Joint Project Office (JPO) on Feb. The chairman serves a one-year term and alternates between the two states. James S. Balloun of Georgia served as JPO chairman in 2008 and was elected vice chairman at the meeting. Bethea served for 12 years on the South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) Board, four of those years as chairman, and has served on the South Carolina Coordinating Council for Economic Development. “This project is vitally important to the economic future of our region and the state of South Carolina,” said Bethea.

DHS to Fund S.C. State & Local Port Security

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano and U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham announced an agreement between DHS and the state of S.C. to use $800,000 in fiscal year 2009 homeland security grant funds to support state and local law enforcement personnel stationed at SeaHawk, a U.S. Coast Guard-led security initiative operating at the Port of Charleston. "SeaHawk represents a critical partnership between federal, state and local law enforcement partners to share information and coordinate response." said Secretary Napolitano. "Today's announcement will enhance our capabilities to deter terrorists and other criminals. "Today's announcement was very good news for the people of Charleston and South Carolina as a whole," said Senator Graham.

SCPA to Implement Cloud-based Billing Services

Billing Platform announced  that it will support South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) by providing a cloud application that streamlines and modernizes billing operations to promote efficient revenue recognition in a dynamic and evolving environment. Established in 1942 by the South Carolina General Assembly, SCPA promotes, develops and facilitates the harbors and seaports within the state of South Carolina. Today, the South Carolina Ports Authority operates the state's seaport assets in Charleston…

Diesel Engine Manufacturer to Expand US Plant

Diesel engine propulsion and power manufacturerTognum, will expand its Aiken Plant for MTU engines and add 20 new jobs over the next two years. The $40 million expansion project is made possible in part by the support of Aiken County, S.C. and the State of South Carolina. Expansion plans for the MTU Aiken Plant include two new research and development buildings that will house new engine test equipment, as well as additional visitor and employee parking areas. Construction has already begun, and Tognum America Inc., an American subsidiary of Tognum AG, expects to complete the new facilities by the end of this year. The investment follows Tognum’s initial commitment of $45 million in plant renovations and expansion…

New Inland Port Planned in South Carolina

Plans to develop South Carolina’s second inland port in Dillon were announced by the South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) in a move that aims to support growth of intermodal container volumes and expand access to markets in neighboring states and throughout the Northeast and Midwest, according to the SCPA. A resolution authorizing the port to move forward with construction of the terminal in the Carolinas I-95 Mega Site was unanimously approved by the SCPA Board of Directors. SCPA will break ground on the new terminal in the first quarter of 2017, and plans to open the facility by the end of the year. “Inland Port Dillon will be a great diversification of our state's logistics footprint,” said Jim Newsome, SCPA president and CEO.

Arctic Sea Ice Lowest in Satellite Era

Arctic Sea Ice Graph: Image courtesy of NSIDC

National Snow & Ice Data Center reports ice appears to have broken the 2007 record daily extent. With two to three more weeks left in the melt season, sea ice continues to track below 2007 daily extents. Arctic sea ice extent fell to 4.10 million square kilometers (1.58 million square miles) on August 26, 2012. This was 70,000 square kilometers (27,000 square miles) below the September 18, 2007 daily extent of 4.17 million square kilometers (1.61 million square miles). Including this year, the six lowest ice extents in the satellite record have occurred in the last six years (2007 to 2012).

Tognum to Invest $40 Million in Expansion of Aiken Plant

Tognum, the specialist for propulsion and power solutions, will expand its Aiken Plant for MTU engines and add 20 new jobs over the next two years. The $40 million expansion project is made possible in part by the support of Aiken County, S.C., and the State of South Carolina. The investment follows Tognum’s initial commitment of $45 million in plant renovations and expansion, and is part of the company’s ongoing plans to increase its footprint in North America. The company maintains facilities and offices throughout the U.S., and is also in the midst of an international plant expansion program. “The global need for clean, efficient diesel engine technology continues to increase, and Tognum is uniquely positioned to meet that increasing demand,” said Dr.

Offshore Drilling Sites Could Expand

As the clean-up and recovery in the wake of Hurricane Katrina proceeds, industry and lawmakers are apparently considering opening additional offshore sites for energy exploration and production to minimize disruption to the nation’s energy supply chain in the event of future natural disasters. According to a report at The State.com – South Carolina’s Home Page, some South Carolina lawmakers are pushing for a change in federal law that would allow drilling for natural gas off the state’s coast. Another report from the Boston Herald reports that some Republicans reportedly may advance a plan to let states sponsor exploration for oil and gas in federal waters off their coasts now closed to drilling.

US Senators from 12 States Seek Offshore Drilling Exemptions like Florida's

© Daniel Gillies / Adobe Stock

Twenty-two Democratic U.S. senators from 12 states on Thursday joined the chorus of local representatives seeking exemptions from Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke's newly proposed offshore drilling plan, after his surprise move on Tuesday to shield Florida. Zinke surprised lawmakers, governors, and industry groups on Tuesday night by announcing that Florida would be removed from the Interior Department's proposal to open up over 90 percent of federal waters to oil and gas leasing.

POLB Looks to Becoming an Industry Hub

The Port of Long Beach is an economic engine that purrs like a luxury sedan, but Thomas Fields, President of the Port of Long Beach Commission, believes it has the potential to roar like a racecar. “As the nation’s second busiest trade gateway, we are an ideal nucleus for a cluster of economic activity built on the maritime industry,” said Fields, the President of the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners. An industry cluster is a geographical concentration of interconnected businesses, suppliers and associated institutions that share a specialized infrastructure, labor markets and services for competitive advantages and gains. Apply it to Long Beach…

Offshore Gaming Bill

The South Carolina Senate amended and then approved General Bill 3002, which would prohibit certain "cruise to nowhere" gaming operations. As passed by the Senate, the bill would impose a general prohibition against gambling on cruises that begin and end in the state, and which do not make an intervening stop within the boundaries of another state or a foreign country. The measure provides an exemption from the general prohibition for voyages and voyage segments that begin and end in the state, are part of a voyage to another state or a foreign country, and in which the vessel reaches the outer state or foreign country within three days after leaving the state in which the segment begins.

Offshore Gaming Bill

The South Carolina Senate amended and then approved General Bill 3002, which would prohibit certain "cruise to nowhere" gaming operations. As passed by the Senate, the bill would impose a general prohibition against gambling on cruises that begin and end in the state, and which do not make an intervening stop within the boundaries of another state or a foreign country. The measure provides an exemption from the general prohibition for voyages and voyage segments that begin and end in the state, are part of a voyage to another state or a foreign country, and in which the vessel reaches the outer state or foreign country within three days after leaving the state in which the segment begins.

SC: State Port Authority Trumps County

The Supreme Court of South Carolina ruled that the eminent domain power of the South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) is superior to that of Jasper County. In the instant case, the SCSPA and the County had competing plans for development of a marine terminal to be located on the Savannah River. The court held that, while both had the power and authority to develop and operate ports or terminals, the power of the state agency to take by eminent domain a particular piece of real property trumped that of the county agency. South Carolina State Ports Authority v. Jasper County, No. 26132 Source: HK Law

South Carolina Officials Welcomed at Panama Canal

Photo courtesy Panama Canal Authority

Panama Canal Authority (ACP) Administrator/CEO Alberto Alemán Zubieta welcomed officials from South Carolina, including state legislative and port representatives. The delegation, which visited the Panama Canal and the Pacific side expansion site, arrived in Panama September 22. The initial meeting, included South Carolina State Ports Authority (SCSPA) Board of Directors Chairman Bill Stern; South Carolina State Senator Larry Grooms; Rockefeller Group Development Corporation Executive Vice President, Development, Leslie E. Smith, Jr.; and Mr. Alemán Zubieta.

Mariner to Supply CommandBridge to MASC

The Maritime Association of South Carolina (MASC) contracts the Mariner Group's system for its port & stakeholder securtiy & operations management. CommandBridge™ has been choses as the cornerstone of MASC's Maritime Command and Control & Situational Awareness project. MASC has been actively promoting the interests of the Port of Charleston since 1926. In 2009, in recognition of the fact that businesses throughout South Carolina use and rely on the services of the state's ports, MAPCHA changed its name to the Maritime Association of South Carolina (MASC) to more accurately reflect its purpose and scope. MASC encompasses persons, firms…

Tropical Storm Colin moves into Atlantic

Strong winds and heavy rainfall were expected across the southeastern United States on Tuesday even as the center of Tropical Storm Colin was moving into the Atlantic Ocean. The storm was 90 miles (145 km) southwest of Charleston, South Carolina, at 4 a.m. eastern time (0800 GMT) and moving at 31 mph, the U.S. National Hurricane Center in Miami said. A tropical storm warning was in effect from the Altamaha Sound Georgia to Oregon Inlet in North Carolina on Tuesday morning. On its forecast path, Colin was to barrel along the coast of the southeastern United States before moving out to sea during the day. As 50 mph winds were expected in the region, a tornado was reported in Lee County Florida, the National Weather Service said.

SC Ports Authority Plans 2nd Inland Port Facility

The South Carolina Ports Authority announced plans to pursue a second inland port facility, driven by the success of Inland Port Greer and demand for enhanced efficiency of international container movements between the Port of Charleston and growing markets in South Carolina and North Carolina. "Inland Port Greer is one of SCPA's most successful investments, as the growth of intermodal container volume movement in our state and region requires appropriate facilities in the interior to ground loaded and empty containers and to leverage the efficiency and sustainability of rail transportation," SCPA president and CEO Jim Newsome said. "If it is feasible, an additional inland port will be a great diversification of our logistics footprint.

BOEM & S. Carolina Agree to Evaluate Sand Resources

As a part of President Obama’s continuing commitment to help coastal communities recover from Hurricane Sandy and promote resilient coastal systems, the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources signed a two-year cooperative agreement totaling $200,000 to evaluate sand resources for coastal resilience and restoration planning. The cooperative effort will enable BOEM and South Carolina to conduct research that will assist coastal communities recovering from storms like Hurricane Sandy. Under this agreement, the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources will evaluate and consolidate existing geological and geophysical data offshore South Carolina.

Supreme Court Finds States Immune from FMC Action

In a sharply divided decision (5-4), the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the concept of sovereign immunity protects states from having to answer private complaints before the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC). to the cruise line. The court held that state sovereign immunity bars the FMC from adjudicating a private party's complaint against a nonconsenting state. Among other things, the Court rejected the argument that the need for uniformity in maritime commerce regulation required limitation of state sovereignty. Dissenting opinions were filed by Justices Stevens and Breyer. Federal Maritime Commission v. South Carolina State Ports Authority.

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

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