MTS Emergency Relief Act Strong First Step in Providing Funding to Ports
AAPA encourages Congress to move expeditiously on port relief efforts
AAPA President & CEO Christopher J. Connor
Today, Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY), chairman of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee’s Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Subcommittee, and Peter DeFazio (D-OR), chair of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, introduced the Maritime Transportation System Emergency Relief Act.
The authorization bill seeks to establish a program to provide dedicated maritime assistance and emergency relief grant funds. The program would make funds available to U.S. public port authorities for emergency response, cleaning and sanitization, staffing, workforce retention and paid leave, procurement and use of personal protective equipment, debt service payments, and for infrastructure repair.
American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA) President and CEO Christopher J. Connor was pleased to see the bill introduced and stated that “COVID-19 relief is critical for the port and maritime industry in response to challenges faced as a result of the pandemic. Maritime Transportation System Emergency Relief funds will help ports manage the impact of this pandemic and ensure that ports and our maritime transportation system maintain a state of readiness and remain prepared to help lead us to economic recovery.”
Mr. Connor went on to say that “AAPA applauds the work of Subcommittee Chairman Maloney and the passion that Committee Chairman Peter DeFazio has demonstrated for the maritime industry. Chairman DeFazio understands that relief is needed now. While we know that this is an authorization bill, it’s AAPA’s hope that the bill be adopted with a strong intent for its funding and that Congress will move expeditiously.”
About AAPA Founded in 1912 and recognized as the unified voice of seaports in the Americas, AAPA today represents 130 of the leading seaport authorities in the United States, Canada, Latin America and the Caribbean and more than 200 industry solution providers and associate members, firms and individuals with an interest in seaports. Cargo activities at U.S. seaports support nearly $31 million American jobs and account for 26 percent of the U.S. economy, generating nearly $5.4 trillion in total economic activity and more than $378 billion in federal, state and local taxes in 2018. To meet the growing demand for trade, AAPA and its members are committed to keeping seaports navigable, secure and sustainable. For more information, visit www.aapa-ports.org. On Twitter: http://twitter.com/AAPA_Seaports