A senator and a congressman from Florida, have proposed legislation aiming to compensate shipowners for costs regarding the moving of container ships anchored off the US West Coast through the Panama Canal to East Coast or Gulf of Mexico ports for unloading.
ore specifically, the Supply Chain Emergency Response Act was introduced by Senator Rick Scott and Representative Carlos Giménez, and aspires to make available up to $125m of unspent money from the CARES Act for this purpose.
In order to be eligible for grant money, the ship would need to prove that it had an agreement to dock at a port on the West Coast.
Fortunately, Florida’s ports are ready and able to help with this crisis and I hope all of my colleagues work with us to quickly pass this good and urgently needed bill
Senator Rick Scott explained.
However, Chinese vessel owners would not be eligible to receive grant money under the legislation.
The Supply Chain Emergency Response Act would:
- Redirect $125 million of unspent, unobligated funding from the CARES Act to help facilitate the move of cargo vessels currently holding along the West Coast across the Panama Canal and dock in the East.
- Allow state governors to use unspent, unobligated CARES Act funding to help offset port fees and other related state-level expenses.
- Prohibit any individual who is a member of the Chinese Communist Party or any company owned, in whole or in part, by the Chinese Communist Party from being eligible for the provisions under this act.
Getting these cargo vessels to Florida and other eastern states also alleviates the shipping container shortage, which has made it difficult for American producers – from our farmers and ranchers to our domestic manufacturers – to ship their goods and products abroad
Rep. Carlos Giménez added.