Friday, June 5, 2020

Jones Act Turns 100

On June 5th the US Maritime Industry is celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Jones Act. The Jones Act is the foundation of the US domestic maritime industry and requires all waterborne cargo or "merchandise" moving from one American port to another be carried on a vessel that is crewed by American citizens (up to 25 percent of the unlicensed crew may be holders of a permanent resident document), built in the US, managed and owned by American citizens.

Senator Wesley L. Jones, who served as Washington's 8th U.S. Senator from 1909-1932, is the author of the Jones Act. The Act has served the Nation over the past 100 years by helping to ensure our domestic commerce moves freely, maintaining a maritime industrial base of shipyards and marine suppliers to serve industry and the military, and providing a cadre of skilled and experienced mariners and officers who are employed in times of peace along our rivers, waterways, and oceans and relied upon to support our military in times of conflict or distress.

Long Beach City College Offers Certificate In International Shipping & Customs Procedures

The Port of Long Beach Maritime Center of Excellence at Long Beach City College is now offering the live, on-line version of its six-week training program entitled, "International Transportation & US Customs Clearance Procedures."

This 24-hour program takes a deep dive approach into three subjects related to importing into the United States: Ocean transportation, air freight and US Customs & Border Protection import procedures. Designed for people new to the logistics business, as well as industry veterans that need a brush-up, the college says this is the most comprehensive program of its kind in the entire country.

Topics to be covered during this fast-paced and real-world oriented program include:

-Full Container Load & Less-than-Container-Load ocean shipping

-Import Operating Models: Buyer's Consolidation vs. Trans-Load

-Pricing structure of the U.S. import maritime industry -Consolidated air freight shipping

-Pricing structure of the U.S. air import industry

-Classification & Valuation of goods for entry into the U.S.

-How to interpret U.S. Customs & Border Protection Regulations (19 CFR)

-How to use the Harmonized Tariff Schedule of the United States

USACE Issues Chittenden Locks Scour Repair Notice of Preparation

The US Army Corps of Engineers, Seattle District, issued today notice of plans to prepare, pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act, an environmental assessment (EA) for proposed urgent interim repairs to the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (Locks) stilling basin apron, spillway ogee, and the fish ladder, located in the Lake Washington Ship Canal (LWSC) in the City of Seattle, King County, Washington. The purpose of this Public Notice is to solicit comments from interested persons, groups and agencies on the environmental impact of the proposal and issues for consideration in the EA.

The Corps has posted the above referenced NOP for your review and comment at: under “Hiram M. Chittenden Locks Urgent Interim Scour Repair Notice of Preparation of Environmental Assessment."

Written comments may be submitted to ATTN: CENWS-PMP, P.O. Box 3755, Seattle, WA, 98124-3755, or at The Corps will consider all submissions received in the public comment period through June 25, 2020.

US Sanctions Companies Transporting Venezuelan Oil

On June 2nd, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated four companies for operating in the oil sector of the Venezuelan economy. Additionally, OFAC identified four vessels as blocked property. The United States reiterates that the exploitation of Venezuela’s oil assets for the benefit of the illegitimate regime of President Nicolas Maduro is unacceptable, and those that facilitate such activity risk losing access to the US financial system.

“The illegitimate Maduro regime has enlisted the help of maritime companies and their vessels to continue the exploitation of Venezuela’s natural resources for the regime’s profit,” said Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin. “The United States will continue to target those who support this corrupt regime and contribute to the suffering of the Venezuelan people.”

Today’s action, pursuant to E.O. 13850, as amended, further targets Venezuela’s oil sector, which continues to provide financial resources to the illegitimate regime of President Maduro:

AFRANAV MARITIME LTD is based in the Marshall Islands and is the registered owner of the vessel Athens Voyager, a Panamanian flagged crude oil tanker that has continued to lift oil cargoes from Venezuelan ports as recently as mid-February 2020.

SEACOMBER LTD is based in Greece and is the registered owner of the vessel Chios I, a Maltese flagged crude oil tanker that has continued to lift oil cargoes from Venezuelan ports as recently as mid to late February 2020.

ADAMANT MARITIME LTD is based in the Marshall Islands and is the registered owner of the vessel Seahero, a Bahamian flagged crude oil tanker that has continued to lift oil cargoes from Venezuelan ports as recently as late February 2020.

SANIBEL SHIPTRADE LTD is based in the Marshall Islands and is the registered owner of the vessel Voyager I, a Marshall Islands flagged crude oil tanker that has continued to lift oil cargoes from Venezuelan ports as recently as late April 2020.

As a result of this week’s action, all property and interests in property of these entities that are in the United States or in the possession or control of US persons are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. In addition, any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by the designated entities are also blocked. OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all dealings by US persons or those within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of blocked or designated persons.

Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Foss Tugs Assist Hospital Ship

Foss Maritime and sister company Amnav assisted the Military Sealift Command Hospital Ship USNS Mercy this morning as she departed the Port of Los Angeles for her home port of San Diego.

The Naval hospital ship arrived at the Port of Los Angeles on March 27 to serve as a referral hospital for non-coronavirus patients, and to offer relief to overburdened hospitals and ERs. Having bolstered the areas preparedness, she now returns to San Diego.

The new ASD-90 tug Jamie Ann, along with sister tugs Alta June, Bo Brusco, and Amnav tug Michele Sloan assisted the massive former San Clemente-class oil tanker in her departure. This was the Jamie Ann’s first job since arriving at her new homeport in late April.

On May 15th, the tugs assisted the USNS Mercy out of her berth at the port, and to the “Angels Gate”, where she would continue on to San Diego.

“Foss is proud of the opportunity to assist this important vessel,” said Paul Hendriks, General Manager of the Foss Southern California Office, “and for the cooperative partnerships of local and federal leaders who have been diligently working together to guide us through this crisis.”

As the USNS Mercy departed, City of Los Angeles officials praised her crew and frontline staff for their part in combating the COVID-19 pandemic over the last seven weeks.

“Foss Maritime has a long history of service in time of national crises, and in working hand-in-hand with the United States Coast Guard, FEMA and other local and federal governments,” said Hendriks. “We’re honored by these strong partnerships and are glad to have played our small part in helping curb the impact of COVID-19 on our communities.”

USACE Approves Nome Port Expansion

By Margaret Bauman

A multi- million project to expand the Port of Nome into a deep water facility for private and military needs has been approved by the US Army Corps of Engineers and sent to Congress for consideration of inclusion in the upcoming Water Resources Development Act.

The Corps’ Alaska District, in partnership with the city of Nome, produced the Port of Nome Modification Feasibility Study under the authority of Section 2006 of the Water Resources Development Act of 2007: Remote and Subsistence Harbors.

The Corps’ plan became official on May 29 with the signing event in Washington DC.

According to the Corps, the report has broad support from local, state, tribal and federal entities. Kawarek Inc., the regional tribal consortium of 20 federally recognized tribes in the Bering Straits region of Alaska, had earlier expressed in a letter to the Corps, concerned about the potential impact of that expansion plan on several issues, ranging from cultural and archaeological resources to access to subsistence resources.

After seeing the Corps’ plan headed for Congress, Alaska’s congressional delegation rounded applauded the project, which is already recognized in the authorizing legislation, S.3591, the America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2020, which was passed out of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee in May.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, said the proposed expansion is vital as traffic through the Bering Strait increases and that this will provide deepwater port access for both civilian and military vessels.

US Army Awards Crowley as Third Party Logistics Provider in Europe

Crowley Solutions has received a multi-year award from the US Army 409th Contracting Support Brigade-Theater Contracting Command to provide transportation of personnel and cargo and procurement of material handling equipment (MHE) under the Third Party Logistics Europe Wide Movement (3PLEWM) contract.

Under terms of the May 4 award, Crowley will provide third party logistics (3PL) services to the US government, NATO and non-NATO partners throughout the European Command area of responsibility, supporting the 21st Theater Sustainment Command (21st TSC) and Theater Movements Center (TMC), headquartered in Kaiserslautern, Germany.

“As a global leader in 3PL services, particularly to the US Department of Defense (DoD), this contract award will expand our proven and mission-driven support for defense and federal government services from the continental U.S. (CONUS) to Europe,” said Crowley’s Chris Goss, vice president, business development and expeditionary logistics. “Crowley is dedicated to serving customers with cost-effective and technology-driven solutions that the Department of Defense and our deployed men and women in uniform can depend on.”

The contract period is May 2020 until May 2023, with an estimated value of $49 million on a task-order basis.

Currently, Crowley manages transportation and related services for US military activity under the Defense Freight Transportation Services (DFTS) contract that requires successful management and execution of 1,800 moves daily, or more than 350,000 moves annually, in North America. Building on its network of commercial logistics providers and carriers, the company expanded in 2019 in Europe to provide the federal government solutions outside the continental US.

Port of Oakland Looks to Lead East Bay Rebound from COVID-19

California’s East Bay Area’s economic rebound from coronavirus would most likely start at the Port of Oakland. That’s what the Port’s Executive Director told East Bay business and civic leaders this week while seeking their support.

Danny Wan assured the East Bay Economic Development Alliance that his Port would be “poised on the forefront of recovery.” During a Zoom conference, the Executive Director asked Alliance members to help promote the Port as Oakland’s economic engine.

“Millions fly through our Airport, billions of dollars of goods move through our Seaport and 84,000 jobs in Northern California depend on all of that activity,” Mr. Wan told an online audience of 300 corporate and government officials. “Through cross-promotion and business partnerships, we can lead the way back for Oakland and the East Bay.”

Mr. Wan spoke as the Port and businesses worldwide labor under the economic drag of COVID-19. Oakland International Airport passenger traffic declined 96 percent last month, the Executive Director said. Seaport cargo volume dipped 6.5 percent. Recovery will come, but there’s no telling when, he cautioned.

Mr. Wan said the Port would lead recovery because it has historically been the region’s economic driver. Not only that, he said, but the Port has inherent advantages to build on, including the fact that California farmers, among the nation’s most successful exporters in 2020, ship their goods overseas through Oakland.