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    November 2018
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Horizon Lines Issues Statement in Strong Support of the Jones Act

Horizon Lines issued the following statement from interim President and Chief Executive Officer Stephen H. Fraser:

Horizon Lines Issues Statement in Strong Support of the Jones Act

Horizon Lines is, and always has been, a very staunch supporter of the Jones Act and all of its requirements.  The Jones Act stipulates that cargo shipped between two U.S. ports must be transported on vessels that are American-made, American-flagged, at least 75% American-owned and predominantly American crewed. We fully support these requirements and steadfastly believe they are vital to American economic, merchant marine, military, national and homeland security interests.  The Jones Act has provided a strong foundation for America’s domestic shipping industry since 1920, and has enjoyed the long-standing support of the U.S. Navy, bi-partisan members of Congress and every president in modern history.

As one of the nation’s leading domestic ocean shipping companies and as a proud member of the American Maritime Partnership, Horizon Lines understands that the history and livelihood of our company, our customers and the markets we serve are inextricably linked to the Jones Act.  Fifty-six years ago this week, the converted U.S. built tanker Ideal X departed Port Newark with 58 containers bound for Port Houston.  With that voyage, Sea-Land Service, our predecessor, went on to revolutionize ocean cargo transportation.  Today, the associates of Horizon Lines, in partnership with our maritime and shore-side union partners, are proud of the role we play supplying the citizens of Alaska, Hawaii and Puerto Rico with goods that are vital to their lives.  The Jones Act has made this possible.  It has been integral to our nation’s past and it is critical to our future.

McCain Introduces Legislation to Repeal Jones Act

Following is a statement released by Senator McCain today:

“Today I am pleased to introduce legislation that would fully repeal the Jones Act, a 1920s law that hinders free trade and favors labor unions over consumers. Specifically, the Jones Act requires that all goods shipped between waterborne ports of the United States be carried by vessels built in the United States and owned and operated by Americans. This restriction only serves to raise shipping costs, thereby making U.S. farmers less competitive and increasing costs for American consumers.

“This was highlighted by a 1999 U.S. International Trade Commission economic study, which suggested that a repeal of the Jones Act would lower shipping costs by approximately 22 percent. Also, a 2002 economic study from the same Commission found that repealing the Jones Act would have an annual positive welfare effect of $656 million on the overall U.S. economy. Since these studies are the most recent statistics available, imagine the impact a repeal of the Jones Act would have today: far more than a $656 million annual positive welfare impact – maybe closer to $1 billion. These statistics demonstrate that a repeal of the Jones Act could prove to be a true stimulus to our economy in the midst of such difficult economic times.

“The Jones Act also adds a real, direct cost to consumers – particularly consumers in Hawaii and Alaska. A 1988 GAO report found that the Jones Act was costing Alaskan families between $1,921 and $4,821 annually for increased prices paid on goods shipped from the mainland. In 1997, a Hawaii government official asserted that ‘Hawaii residents pay an additional $1 billion per year in higher prices because of the Jones Act. This amounts to approximately $3,000 for every household in Hawaii.'”

“This antiquated and protectionist law has been predominantly featured in the news as of late due to the Gulf Coast oil spill. Within a week of the explosion, 13 countries, including several European nations, offered assistance from vessels and crews with experience in removing oil spill debris, and as of June 21st, the State Department has acknowledged that overall ‘it has had 21 aid offers from 17 countries.’ However, due to the Jones Act, these vessels are not permitted in U.S. waters.

“The Administration has the ability to grant a waiver of the Jones Act to any vessel – just as the previous Administration did during Hurricane Katrina – to allow the international community to assist in recovery efforts. Unfortunately, this Administration has not done so.

“Therefore, some Senators have put forward legislation to waive the Jones Act during emergency situations, and I am proud to co-sponsor this legislation. However, the best course of action is to permanently repeal the Jones Act in order to boost the economy, saving consumers hundreds of millions of dollars. I hope my colleagues will join me in this effort to repeal this unnecessary, antiquated legislation in order to spur job creation and promote free trade.”