President Trump Waives Jones Act, Enables Rescue Shipments For Puerto Rico

President Trump ordered the Jones Act to be waived for shipments to hurricane-ravaged Puerto Rico immediately, according to White House press secretary Sarah Sanders this morning.

At the request of Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello, Trump “has authorized the Jones Act be waived for Puerto Rico. It will go into effect immediately."

On Wednesday, DHS officials said that the administration was considering lifting the law, which bans foreign-flagged ships from carrying freight between U.S. ports.

As a reminder, The 1920 Jones Act requires shipments of goods between two U.S. ports to be made with American-flagged vessels, limiting the amount of shipping and driving up its cost, and had been holding up shipments of much needed support equipment and supplies for Puerto Rico.

A number of lawmakers had urged the Trump administration to waive the law and to do it immediately. Among them is Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who wrote a letter Tuesday to acting Homeland Security Secretary Elaine Duke demanding she take action.

“It is unacceptable to force the people of Puerto Rico to pay at least twice as much for food, clean drinking water, supplies and infrastructure due to Jones Act requirements as they work to recover from this disaster,” McCain wrote. “We must treat this emergency relief with urgency ? every day that business owners are unable to recover their assets and account for lost business, the economy will retreat even further into devastation.”

The Department of Homeland Security has gotten emergency waivers to the Jones Act twice in the last month to help with recovery efforts in Texas and Florida after hurricanes Harvey and Irma. But during testimony Wednesday before the Senate Homeland Security and Government Affairs Committee, Duke said DHS can issue waivers only if they are related to national defense matters. The waivers for Texas and Florida were to help aid fuel shortages, she said, which fall under the category of national security.

“We don’t know of fuel shortages on the island of Puerto Rico,” Duke said. “If there are fuel shortages, we are looking at the Jones Act. … We will use it appropriately.”

Presumably, they do now.

Comments

Puerto Banus NA Tristan Ludlow Thu, 09/28/2017 - 11:41 Permalink

Had a home in the condado during the 90s...PR residents do not pay personal income tax.They pay fica, and they take much more than their share.  While I was there it was reported by the san juan star that the US fed gov provided PR with over 22 billion/annually...that's half a trillion over the decade in today's money.Why don't they finally man up, ... take their independence as did Cuba and the Philipines...what more could a people want?We've had enough of the savagery...such as Vanessa Marcotte, a google employee visiting her mother and murdered, among other things.Columbus discovered PR on his first voyage, but did NOT go ashore as they were cannibals.NYC was a very safe place at night up until they arrived for the welfare ...That's why they immigrated to NY ... 

In reply to by Tristan Ludlow

farflungstar Puerto Banus NA Thu, 09/28/2017 - 12:03 Permalink

^^ ThisIn the 50's and 60's the Spics (along with kikes who would rent to them and the niggers) DESTROYED East New York (Bklyn) and encouraged white flight to Queens and Long Island.East New York is still an incredible, drug and gang infested shit hole today. Welfare mamacitas, they breed like rats and the men are lazy, stupid and violent AFhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cixczzF0A10 

In reply to by Puerto Banus NA

Antifaschistische spastic_colon Thu, 09/28/2017 - 09:13 Permalink

My guess....is that Mr. Trump, along with every single one of the prior 10 presidents....had no clue there was a moronic law like the "Jones Act".    ...but he probably is the only one who would have insisted on it's immediate dismissal.  ...the question is why do we have all these laws to protect oligopolists and monopolists (let's throw the NFL into that too)

In reply to by spastic_colon

SafelyGraze Metastatic Debt Thu, 09/28/2017 - 11:27 Permalink

"had been holding up shipments of much needed support equipment and supplies for Puerto Rico"the solution is as obvious as it is simpleinstead of allowing foreign-flagged ships to carry goods to PR, the president should instead order us-flagged ships to carry the goodsif the us-flagged ships are not carrying those goods, they can offload them from foreign-flagged shipsahoy.give us all your rum.hugs,the pirates of old 

In reply to by Metastatic Debt

shamus001 spastic_colon Thu, 09/28/2017 - 10:14 Permalink

You posters are uneducated plebes. Mckain has been trying to scrap the Jones act fir years! Im a merchant marine, have been so for 15 years, and you kniw what im doing now? Starting my own business because there is NO WORK for U.S. shipping! Many of you are happy to throw your fellow U.S. Mariners under the bus? Because the "cost are twice as much" (snivel, snivel) - WELL LET ME INFORM YOU PREMADONNAS- everything YOU do for a living in America is 2-5-10X more expensive than hiring a foreigner to do it!Perhapse we should remove ALL national employment protections and haul in some Phillipinos to replace you? Philli truckers will truck fir 59% what you chargeMexi ranchers will till soil fir 30% what you chargeHindi paper pushers will do your desk jockey job for 10% what you chargeOF COURSE Americans charge more! Look at our cost of living!!!???Trump! You scrao ir mess with the Jones act and EVERY Mariner and Vet whi voted you in, will vote to replace you!

In reply to by spastic_colon

shamus001 GunnerySgtHartman Thu, 09/28/2017 - 10:19 Permalink

Sgt Hartmab, are you naive enough to entrust your supply infrastructure in complete foreign hands? When America is betrayed it will come by critical supply first and foremost! Mariners died in greater numbers during WWII than ALL branches combined! What foreigners are goung to lay down their lives to deliver critical supplies to our allies during war? You hollow out our sea trade and replace it with foreign labor and you reveal our back to be hit with a dagger.You should know better! Pull diwn your avatar.

In reply to by GunnerySgtHartman

Puerto Banus NA American Psycho Thu, 09/28/2017 - 12:09 Permalink

In time of war a strong merchant ship fleet is essential.The US has not had a substancial merchant fleet since the 50s.  In 1955 US ships carried 55% of foreign trade.  Today it is less than 1%.Ths US flag fleet has shrunk from 850 vessels at that time to 80 today.That was the first, and easiest blow to the middle class of America.  A strong middle class is essential to our cherished US values.  Gone.

In reply to by American Psycho

boattrash Juliette Thu, 09/28/2017 - 09:39 Permalink

Working with 2 of 'em on my crew right now...but that's a non-sequitur, as USCG Licensing requires US Citizenship to obtain an Officers License.If all of you guys want rid of the Jones Act, I could agree, but I want rid of every damned law this Govt has.In case you aren't aware how it works, it's not the owner of a 21 million dollar boat that says I can run as Chief Engineer on it, but rather, a shitload of bureaucrats...

In reply to by Juliette

shamus001 Juliette Thu, 09/28/2017 - 10:28 Permalink

Their level of education is not comparrible to ours. You can BUY a license, even, with a good bribe!Furst world countries, measure anithers training. The Poles are exceptional comparred to America. Im a Mariner. I knew plenty if phillipino Mariners. Some strive for better, the rest are in "clicks" ...abd no, they dont work harder. Yiu must be speaking out of preconcieved ideas that you hear others spout.U.S. ships are clean, functional, and sharp! Safety training is strong, foreigners ships are filthy, gear isnt maintained, rust and filth everywhere, and they pencil whip safety and maintenance. I know- we purchase their 10 yr old run down ships, rebuild them, CLEAN them, and get them working again. Every U.S. ship manned overseas in 3rd wirld countries, mabned by locals there returns 5 years later in SEVERE DISTRESS.

In reply to by Juliette

herkomilchen shamus001 Thu, 09/28/2017 - 11:47 Permalink

Sounds like you are passionate about the cleanliness of the ships goods come in on.  Sounds like you don't mind paying for ships to steam thousands of miles needlessly.  Sounds like you can afford to and don't mind paying double for your goods.  A free market would provide you this option.For those who don't want to or can't afford to pay double for those things, a free market would provide them their goods at half the cost.The Jones Act uses government to forcibly impose your personal preferences and buying choices onto everyone else, most of whom don't share them.

In reply to by shamus001

Son of Captain Nemo Thu, 09/28/2017 - 08:33 Permalink

“It is unacceptable to force the people of Puerto Rico to pay at least twice as much for food, clean drinking water, supplies and infrastructure due to Jones Act requirements as they work to recover from this disaster,” McCain wrote. “We must treat this emergency relief with urgency ? every day that business owners are unable to recover their assets and account for lost business, the economy will retreat even further into devastation.”

This coming from a man who's father ordered the destruction and coverup of one of his own Navy's ships by it's "closest ally"... Who himself dropped Napalm on Vietnamese...

And sanctioned mutiple wars of choice that tortured and murdered millions abroad.

To the Glioblatoma in John McCain's head... YOU REALLY NEED TO WORK FASTER!!!

Son of Captain Nemo Endgame Napoleon Thu, 09/28/2017 - 08:50 Permalink

Couldn't agree with you more. E N

I'm actually trying to volunteer but cannot get passage right now because FEMA is holding up the transfer of aid right now because of these "Act(s)" to extort more money...

My apologies for not stating the obvious of Puerto Rico's misery. I'm just trying to cite the hypocrisy of a World class mass murderer that is Senator John McCain of Arizona!

In reply to by Endgame Napoleon