Jones Act Safe for Now
Last week, we reported in our blog that Senator John McCain (R-AZ) was proposing an amendment that could repeal the Jones Act.
However, after our post was published, some positive news came out of Washington, as the amendment was never considered for debate when the bill it was attached to came up for discussion in the Senate. According to the Associated Press, McCain attached the amendment to a bill on the unrelated Keystone Pipeline project.
When debate came up for the project, McCain’s amendments were not discussed and the talk was rescheduled. It should be noted that this does not mean the amendment is dead—it just means it is stalled.
When McCain introduced his amendment, it sparked an uproar in shipping and political circles. Those who spoke out said it would reduce the number of laborers working in shipbuilding and ship repair. Nevertheless, McCain moved forward with the amendment and claimed that if the Jones Act was eliminated, it could reduce shipping costs.
The stalled discussion may be good news for supporters of the Jones Act. Thirty-two representatives from both political parties disagreed with McCain after his amendment was proposed, sending him a letter. “One of the reasons our Navy is strong is because of the U.S. shipyard industrial base,” the letter said, according to the AP. “This measure, however, would gut the nation’s shipbuilding capacity and have far reaching impacts across the [country].”
We will keep you updated on new news coming out of Washington about the Jones Act. Continue to follow our blog.
The Importance of the Jones Act
The Jones Act offers safeguards for injured seamen, and places the blame on employers if unsafe conditions are prevalent that can lead to injuries. Stay up to date on Jones Act news by following us on Twitter and Facebook.
The possible repeal of the Jones Act is something that should greatly concern you if you work in a maritime position. Make sure you remain educated and contact your local representatives if you have any concerns about legislation.
Latti & Anderson LLP – Nationwide Maritime Attorneys