- Terelle Jerricks
Washington, D.C.–The jobs of American mariners will now have better protection during times of crisis after the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2012 was signed by President Barack Obama in December.
The Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Act of 2012 will fund the United States Coast Guard until 2014, bring better transparency to the Jones Act and make obtaining a Transportation Worker Identification Credential much less of a hassle.
Under the new law, the Maritime Administration must now identify all actions to ensure that U.S.-built ships meet national defence requirements. They will then have to publish that information on the Department of Transportation’s website. If the Maritime Administration requests a waiver it will now have to go through Congress.
New provisions for obtaining a Transportation Worker Identification Credential are designed to make the process quicker by enabling applicants to collect their credentials on their first visit.
The bill was met with approval from both sides of the aisle. Rep. Jeff Landry who had previously criticized the administration for issuing waivers for vessels carrying oil from the nation’s Strategic Petroleum Reserves said, “This provision shows how government should work. Republicans and Democrats working together with industry and labor to pass a provision that will protect American Jobs and put our nation on strong footing.”