Guam Pacific News Center:VIDEO: Blas Garners Rotary Support for Jones Act Exemptions
Blas's resolution asks Congresswoman Madeline Bordallo to introduce legislation exempting the non-contiguous states and territories from the provisions of the Jones Act.
“The Jones Act was a mandate passed in the 1920s right at a time the United States was still feeling the effects of a World War,” Blas told PNC.
“You gotta remember also in the 1920s the state of Alaska and the state of Hawaii didn't exist as states and the territories of Puerto Rico and Guam were still not considered territories. Since then the United States has expanded its footprint, if you will, to include these areas and so you've got a provision that may have been okay and may have been designed to been able to protect the contiguous United States but doesn't do too much as for the economic stability and viability of its islands.”
While Guam already has some exemptions, Blas says they have very little effect on our shipping costs because shippers still have to pass through other non-contiguous U.S. Ports, like Honolulu, to get to Guam, and those ports are still subject to full Jones Act Restrictions.
Blas says an exemption from the U.S. Build Provision would allow shippers to use ships built in other countries to service Guam at a much lower cost. He argues that those savings could then be passed onto island consumers.