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Bill to exempt Alaska from PVSA


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2 hours ago, pms4104 said:

Sure ... so much of the Alaska economy depends on tourism, a 6-month season.  Too many eggs in one basket becomes problematic when there is a tourism interruption, as we have been seeing for a year and a half.  

 

Then again, I may be misguided in my assessment.

Of course many of the non tourism industries, such as fishing and logging are increasingly regulated out of business.

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1 hour ago, AmazedByCruising said:

 

 

IIRC , crew costs about the same as fuel, 15% or similar. Without much calculation, let's assume that paying US crew according to US standards would raise a $500 fare to, let's say $750. If PVSA was just about hiring US crew, there would be ships going up and down at the West Coast. In reality, almost every cruise ship is registered elsewhere, sailing to "far" ports that their guests don't care for, and can't do West Coast cruises because there's no far port available.

 

PVSA leads to a lot of damage which cannot be easily seen, whereas the "saved jobs" are easy to show. The simple fact that there aren't any cruises on the West Coast shows that something is amiss. The only reasonable explanation is PVSA. 

 

There could have been companies that could have supplied the ships with food. There would be farmers growing food for the suppliers. So many travel agents. So many cab drivers, hotel owners, tourist guides, piano tuners. So many magicians, so many people who know how to arrange flowers or how to keep the guests happy even during bingo.

 

They are not on CNN saying that they'd lose their job without PVSA because due to PVSA the job they would have preferred doesn't exist. It's hard to explain in sound bites, and the piano tuner might not even realize it, but there would be more pianos to tune if PVSA wouldn't be so busy protecting US jobs.

 

People flying to port X to sail to port Y after which passengers fly back is not "transportation from port X to port Y". Such cabotage laws were obviously meant to mean actual "transportation of people" that should be done by US ships only. In 2021 people fly to port X, sail a bit, and fly back from port Y. The product is obviously not "transportation".  

 

PVSA was officially installed to prevent exploding steam ships. Again it's obvious that passengers don't need such protection.

 

I think it's more than reasonable that lawmakers thoroughly think about PVSA and make some adjustments that would allow more itineraries and wouldn't force ships to sail to ports nobody cares for.  I'd say that PVSA should be gotten rid of altogether.

look up how many foreign ferries have sunk in the last 10 years around the world.

Edited by nocl
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15 minutes ago, nocl said:

look up how many foreign ferries have sunk in the last 10 years around the world.

I'm lazy how many is it?  ( I do have a good reason I am watching football)

Edited by Nymich
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To quote chengkp75:

"Any waiver of the PVSA is a "statute" in that it needs to be approved by vote of Congress, so yes, this is a waiver of the PVSA, for a specific time frame, and for specific ships.

 

Perhaps I am missing something here but why couldn't congress simply allow cruise lines to designate which ships they want to use each season for Alaska. Then charge them a fee per ship for the privilege.

Congress would extend the statute for a specific time frame that suits the Alaska cruise season and could review or extend it for the next.

 

More $$$ for the U.S. coffers plus as many have mentioned, shore side revenue at U.S. ports would also benefit.

 

chengkp75...I respect everything you have posted. Since you understand this situation inside and out is my solution really all that complicated?

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2 hours ago, rkacruiser said:

 

To the best of my geographical knowledge, ocean water that flows from one port to another ought to support a ship of whatever national flag, crewed by whatever nationality, carrying passengers of whatever nationality willing to pay whatever needs to be paid for their journey.

 

I am weary of:  "we can't do this because of that".  Then, by darn it, let's figure out what can be done that would allow the Nieuw Amsterdam to sail 7 day Hawaiian cruises from/to Honolulu or an Alaskan cruise from Seattle that does not require a port stop in a Canadian port. 

 

 

No one said it can't be done.  Of course it can be done.  What we're saying is why it shouldn't be done.  Most developed nations, including Canada, have cabotage laws that are similar to the US Jones Act and/or PVSA.  Rightfully so, in my opinion.  I think every nation, including the US, should have these laws to protect their own industry.  

 

I'm not sure what you mean by the ocean water part.  Are you saying nations shouldn't claim territorial waters?

Edited by Aquahound
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28 minutes ago, atanac said:

 

Perhaps I am missing something here but why couldn't congress simply allow cruise lines to designate which ships they want to use each season for Alaska. Then charge them a fee per ship for the privilege.

Congress would extend the statute for a specific time frame that suits the Alaska cruise season and could review or extend it for the next.

 

 

For what reason though?  Under normal circumstances when cruise ships can satisfy the law by a port stop in Canada, what would be the reason for exempting specific ships?  

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20 minutes ago, atanac said:

To quote chengkp75:

"Any waiver of the PVSA is a "statute" in that it needs to be approved by vote of Congress, so yes, this is a waiver of the PVSA, for a specific time frame, and for specific ships.

 

Perhaps I am missing something here but why couldn't congress simply allow cruise lines to designate which ships they want to use each season for Alaska. Then charge them a fee per ship for the privilege.

Congress would extend the statute for a specific time frame that suits the Alaska cruise season and could review or extend it for the next.

 

More $$$ for the U.S. coffers plus as many have mentioned, shore side revenue at U.S. ports would also benefit.

 

chengkp75...I respect everything you have posted. Since you understand this situation inside and out is my solution really all that complicated?

Simplistically, and from a cruise only viewpoint, it might work.  The first problem is that I don't believe the current waiver is on sound legal ground,  with the wording that the cruises are "deemed" to be foreign because the ship sent an email to Canada's immigration agency, and the foreign crew are "deemed" to be leaving the US again simply because the ship sent an email to Canada.  The next problem is that you are creating a precedent for allowing foreign flag ships to operate domestically, without having to adhere to US law.  Even though the existing US flag cruise ships that operate to Alaska have a different demographic from the mainstream cruise lines, why should they be held to a large economic hardship of having to meet all the requirements of being US flag, when the other cruise lines aren't.  Secondly, foreign flag ships operating domestically fall afoul of more than just the PVSA.  The crew are not allowed to work in the US, except as crew on foreign voyages, so even if US labor organizations agreed to allow this to happen, the crew would need work visas, not crew visas.  While the existing Alaska Tourism Recovery Act passed easily because it was seen as a covid relief measure, future extensions would require a whole lot more lobbying and support than before.  Any further extension of this waiver would, as the Congressman from Colorado(?) (Nevada?) proposed, would get sent to committee where USCG, Homeland, and State departments would weigh in, and also lobby groups like the maritime labor unions, the US Chamber of Shipping, and others.

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Regarding cruise ships, evidently, the proposed bill only allows exemption from stopping in a foreign port to cruise ships with more than a 1,000 passenger capacity.  I can't understand why.  Would someone please comment about this.

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6 minutes ago, amusea said:

Regarding cruise ships, evidently, the proposed bill only allows exemption from stopping in a foreign port to cruise ships with more than a 1,000 passenger capacity.  I can't understand why.  Would someone please comment about this.

Because all the foreign flag ships are larger than this, and the existing US flag cruise ships are smaller than this, and the Senator does not want to create the opportunity for those small cruise ship lines to flag their ships foreign.  If her bill only wants to give waivers to foreign flag ships, and not to only waive the US built clause, then the bill is a bit of hypocrisy, in that it forces the smaller ships to still operate under the economic hardship of US flag, while giving the store away to the foreign ships. 

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2 hours ago, Nymich said:

I'm lazy how many is it?  ( I do have a good reason I am watching football)

several outside of the US, none in the US. I will leave the exact count and the number of deaths up to you.  The articles and the descriptions of what went wrong in each case is part of the story.

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18 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

If this were the reason that CLIA does not want to support a repeal or modification of the PVSA, why did they spend 10 years lobbying for the exemption for Puerto Rico?  And, then once they got the exemption, the service was taken up by exactly one cruise line, and that service lasted for about 1 year, due to lack of demand.  And, that exemption, like all exemptions granted under the PVSA, are rescinded as soon as there is a viable US flag carrier on the route.  The reason that CLIA does not look for any modification to the PVSA is that they know there will be quid pro quo, and that will likely be that they will need to meet far more US regulations and laws than they do at the moment.  It would adversely affect their bottom line, rather than add anything to it.  The cruise industry does not have the great political clout that many believe.

I have seen you make this statement about Puerto Rico previously.  I can tell you that in 1987, we boarded the Sea Princess in San Juan and sailed to Fort Lauderdale.  And in 1994, we boarded the Song of America in San Juan and sailed to Miami.  Both these were not one time events, but part of a seasonal series of cruises.  I agree, I think there was a lack of demand as (if I remember correctly) these sailings lasted for one season only, but these were two different cruise lines, seven years apart.

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9 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

 

No, what he is proposing is that no nation, anywhere, has jurisdiction over any part of the ocean.  Great, then tankers can go back to cleaning tanks by dumping crude oil in buckets over the side, and cruise ships can go back to dumping tons of plastic bags full of trash into the ocean every night.  Sure would make my life easier.

And even though it would "make your life easier", these are not things you would advocate or be comfortable with because you are a responsible person.

 

Others just see some small benefit to themselves as cruisers and don't seem to care about any other consequences.

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6 hours ago, agtsw said:

I have seen you make this statement about Puerto Rico previously.  I can tell you that in 1987, we boarded the Sea Princess in San Juan and sailed to Fort Lauderdale.  And in 1994, we boarded the Song of America in San Juan and sailed to Miami.  Both these were not one time events, but part of a seasonal series of cruises.  I agree, I think there was a lack of demand as (if I remember correctly) these sailings lasted for one season only, but these were two different cruise lines, seven years apart.

What was the itinerary of those cruises?  Did they include the ABC islands?

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7 hours ago, agtsw said:

I have seen you make this statement about Puerto Rico previously.  I can tell you that in 1987, we boarded the Sea Princess in San Juan and sailed to Fort Lauderdale.  And in 1994, we boarded the Song of America in San Juan and sailed to Miami.  Both these were not one time events, but part of a seasonal series of cruises.  I agree, I think there was a lack of demand as (if I remember correctly) these sailings lasted for one season only, but these were two different cruise lines, seven years apart.

Thanks.  The exemption was passed in 1984.  I was not aware of those services, but each lasted about a year, from what I see, and ended due to lack of demand.  So, in 37 years, three cruise lines tried PVSA cruises, and all failed within a year.  Sort of shows how little the demand for PVSA cruises actually is, as CLIA has noted.

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10 minutes ago, Aardvaark said:

Including "Queen of the North"?

Yes.  That is one of the true accidents, while the majority of them have been due to overloading and improper stability (tipping over).  Much like the Golden Ray, a Ro/Ro that capsized off Savannah, GA a couple years back, and which the NTSB attributed to "improper stability calculations" (duh).

Edited by chengkp75
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On 9/17/2021 at 5:33 PM, atanac said:

The PVSA is an antiquated law

The PVSA was written long before Alaska became a state, and it did not protect the citizens of Alaska.  It needs to be modified so that we can have free passage between the mainland and one of our states.  PVSA was also written long before Hawaii was admitted as a state.  The law protects the U.S. Maritime industry at the expense of the citizens of two of our 50 states.

 

On 9/18/2021 at 9:13 AM, chengkp75 said:

Any waiver of the PVSA is a "statute" in that it needs to be approved by vote of Congress

The Homeland Security Secretary can issue waivers under certain circumstances without a vote from Congress.  It's only a statute if it is passed by a legislature and signed into law by the Executive.

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18 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

It needs to be modified so that we can have free passage between the mainland and one of our states. 

 

Thank you for echoing my thesis statement, which is not subject to change from peer pressure.    Our country is cycling between nationalistic mode from its imperialism,  as it has done a few times in our short history.   Poor foreign policy,  Brexit, Afganistexit, Covid-19 are just some of the catalysts.   We need to maintain our sovereignty on principle alone  but more importantly for domestic economic management.

 

19 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

The Homeland Security Secretary can issue waivers under certain circumstances without a vote from Congress.  It's only a statute if it is passed by a legislature and signed into law by the Executive.

 

Thank you for keeping the pecking order visible.   

 

 

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28 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

The law protects the U.S. Maritime industry at the expense of the citizens of two of our 50 states.

 

My gut feeling is that this is the meat and potatoes of the 3 bills that were introduced from the Honorable Senator from Utah,  who is also a lawyer.    There is strong connection between Utah and Hawaii,   and I support the 3 bills he has championed.

 

 

Edited by JRG
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25 minutes ago, Daniel A said:

It needs to be modified so that we can have free passage between the mainland and one of our states.

What is barring free passage between the mainland and two of our states?  Nothing.  Can you take a foreign airline between two of our states?  What you really want is cheap passage between the mainland and two states.  Let's call it what it really is.

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The examples for Puerto Rio are old hat,  and I have dismissed them a few times before as they are not relevant for time and place and context.   To derive the conclusion that CLIA has no interest in changing PVSA because of Puerto Rico is a side-bar distractive argument,  at best.

 

 

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2 minutes ago, chengkp75 said:

What is barring free passage between the mainland and two of our states?  Nothing.  Can you take a foreign airline between two of our states?  What you really want is cheap passage between the mainland and two states.  Let's call it what it really is.

That's hyperbole.  Can you name a single U.S. Flagged Cruise Ship I can take directly from the Mainland to Alaska or Hawaii?  I don't want protectionist laws which only permit me to travel on a ferry with a pup tent pitched on the deck.  It is those very same protectionist regulations which decimated the U.S. Maritime industry over the years.

 

Seattle Times: Klondike Special Report: Alaska ferry Columbia carries a  sense of adventure

 

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12 hours ago, Aquahound said:
12 hours ago, atanac said:

 

Perhaps I am missing something here but why couldn't congress simply allow cruise lines to designate which ships they want to use each season for Alaska. Then charge them a fee per ship for the privilege.

Congress would extend the statute for a specific time frame that suits the Alaska cruise season and could review or extend it for the next.

 

 

For what reason though?  Under normal circumstances when cruise ships can satisfy the law by a port stop in Canada, what would be the reason for exempting specific ships?  

 

I am going to respond to the post above,  because I don't think @atanac received an accurate response,  but I make it in declarative statement format as I have no intention of responding back.     

 

What @atanacis describing is the need to change the law,   and the response to his post is talking about trying to SATISFY the Very LAW that needs to be changed.    That is a redundant response to his question because he is not interested in satisfying the law,  he (or she) is interested in changing it or deleting or revising it or whatever adjective a reader is using to describe the waiver.

 

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8 minutes ago, JRG said:

 

I am going to respond to the post above,  because I don't think @atanac received an accurate response,  but I make it in declarative statement format as I have no intention of responding back.     

 

What @atanacis describing is the need to change the law,   and the response to his post is talking about trying to SATISFY the Very LAW that needs to be changed.    That is a redundant response to his question because he is not interested in satisfying the law,  he (or she) is interested in changing it or deleting or revising it or whatever adjective a reader is using to describe the waiver.

 


So what you’re saying is, you too cannot provide an answer for why specific ships should be exempted. Got it. Carry on. 🙄

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