CBP steps up Jones Act enforcement in coastal trades

JULY 20, 2016 — U.S. Customers and Border Protection's Office of Field operations has set up a National Jones Act Divison of Enforcement (JADE).

In a July 15 notice to the Area Port of New Orleans Trade Community, CBP says JADE has been established to present a uniformed approach on issues involving the Jones Act.

"The Jones Act is the foundation of maritime policy of the United States and a vital tool for our nation's security and economy," says the notice."The mission of the JADE will be to assist CBP and industry partners on issues concerning coastwise trade, with the goal of being a clearinghouse for all coastwise trade issues. All formal ruling requests will continue to be forwarded to Regulations and Rulings, Office of Trade. The JADE will be located within the New Orleans Field Office and will be staffed by a team of subject matter experts (SMEs) to assist industry partners with questions and concerns on issues involving coastwise trade. The JADE will work in partnership with industry stakeholders in the enforcement of the Jones Act, along with all other coastwise trade laws. As an advocate for coastwise trade, the JADE be available for outreach presentations to industry partners on the subject of coastwise trade."

Suspected violations of coastwise trade can be submitted through the e-Allegation portal at https:eallegations.cbp.gov.

Industry partners can contact the JADE at jonesact@cbp.dhs.gov with any questions or concerns regarding coastwise trade issues

.In the most recent issue of law firm Winston & Strawn's Maritime Fed Watch, partner Charlie Papavizas notes "At a March 9, 2016, hearing before the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Homeland Security, Senator Bill Cassidy of Louisiana stated that he had worked 'with CBP and our Offshore Marine Service Association' on Jones Act enforcement, which he said needed to be stepped up. CBP Deputy Commissioner Kevin McAleenan responded that CBP was committed to increased enforcement and that CBP was looking to review and update prior Jones Act rulings."

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