Thank you Chairman Boustany. It’s a pleasure to have this opportunity to hold a joint hearing between our subcommittees. Our Members have a lot of interest in maritime issues and I believe today’s hearing is an excellent chance to examine how to strengthen the U.S. maritime industry.
I’m glad to have the opportunity to join with my friends on the Oversight Subcommittee in examining the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund. I too agree that it has been mismanaged and I appreciate Chairman Boustany’s leadership on the issue.
Today’s hearing also examines the policy issues surrounding the unique tax structure of the maritime industry. In the past, the Internal Revenue Code has unnecessarily hindered the growth of the U.S. maritime industry putting it at a competitive disadvantage internationally. While Congress took measures last decade to correct some of these problems, I believe there is still work to be done.
The Short Sea Shipping Act and the American Shipping and Reinvestment Act are two pieces of legislation that stand to improve the maritime industry. I look forward to exploring them further with our witnesses today.
Thank you Chairman Boustany. I yield back.