Wheelhouse Weekly – May 16, 2017

Volume 22…Number 20…May 16, 2017


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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced last week that it was withdrawing a proposal to revoke the rulings that allow foreign-flag vessels to transport equipment from the United States to offshore energy rigs.

The proposal that was withdrawn had the support of the U.S.-flag fleet and a range of U.S. maritime organizations. Proponents said it would have created 1,000 U.S. mariner jobs and brought in over a dozen U.S.-flag vessels.

In essence, the proposal would have closed loopholes that allow foreign-built, foreign-flagged and foreign-owned vessels to operate in the offshore oil and gas industry without any Jones Act requirement.

The Jones Act is the body of law that requires that goods transiting between two points in the United States be moved on vessels that are U.S. built, U.S. owned and U.S.-citizen crewed.

In announcing the decision to withdraw the proposal, CBP Director of Border Security Glen Vereb said the agency wanted to reconsider it in light of the comments received.

House majority whip Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.) commented that he was “very disappointed in the announcement by U.S. Customs and Border Protection regarding the Jones Act.”

“I urge the Administration to tread carefully in this process and to thoroughly consider its implications on our national security, and I am committed to doing everything I can to make sure that the Jones Act isn’t undermined in this process,” Scalise added.

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The U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) and U.S. Transportation Command (USTRANSCOM) are concerned that there are not enough qualified mariners to sustain an activation of the entire sealift fleet, a MARAD official told members of the Senate on May 9.

In testimony before the Senate Subcommittee on Surface Transportation, Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety and Security, Acting MARAD Administrator Joel Szabat echoed concerns expressed earlier this month by USTRANSCOM Commander Gen. Darren McDew in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee.

McDew said the U.S.-flag fleet is so small as to compromise the country’s sealift sustainment capability in the event of an armed conflict.

USTRANSCOM is responsible for the global movement of combat units and sustainment cargo for America’s armed forces.

MARAD is responsible for ensuring that U.S.-flag ships and merchant mariners are available to meet Department of Defense (DOD) sealift requirements.

“As of today,” Szabat testified, “the size and composition of the U.S.-flag commercial fleet is adequate to meet immediate military contingencies. However, due to the decline in size in recent years of both the domestic U.S.-flag fleet with unlimited horsepower and unlimited tonnage and the international U.S. flag commercial fleet, both USTRANCOM and MARAD are concerned that there are not enough qualified mariners to sustain an activation of the entire sealift fleet…”

Szabat testified that the United States currently counts about 11,000 qualified mariners, enough to allow an opening surge, but that about 13,000 qualified mariners are needed for an extended activation.

He said more cargo is necessary to increase the size of the fleet and the number of American mariners, and urged strong support for the Maritime Security Program and an increase from 50 percent to 75 percent in cargo preference requirements in the context of the food aid program.

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The AFL-CIO last week released “Executive Paywatch,” its annual report on the salaries of corporate chief executive officers (CEOs).

The data shows that in 2016, the average nonsupervisory production worker earned just $37,600 a year, a rate of pay that, when adjusted for inflation, has remained stagnant for 50 years.

In contrast, the average compensation of an S&P 500 CEO was $13.1 million in 2016, a year in which CEOs on average received raises of 5.9 percent.

“Big corporations continually find ways to rig the economy in their favor and line their CEOs’ pockets at the expense of the workers who make their businesses run,” says AFL-CIO President Rich Trumka.

“Many U.S. corporations aren’t paying taxes on their offshore profits, shifting the burden to working people,” he adds.

“The worst of the tax avoiders, 18 Fortune 500 companies, paid $0 in federal taxes between 2008 and 2015.”

Seven years ago, Congress passed a law that included a rule requiring all publicly traded companies to disclose their CEO-to-worker pay ratio.

But Wall Street and big corporations have lobbied hard to stop the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from enforcing the rule.

The AFL-CIO Executive Paywatch website is the largest database on executive pay:

The site includes data on the highest paid CEOs, corporate tax avoidance and job “offshoring.”

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The Maritime Administration (MARAD) last week issued an advisory cautioning U.S.-flag vessels to remain vigilant and adhere to counter-piracy measures when transiting the Sulu and Celebes Seas in light of recent boardings and kidnappings for ransom in that area.

Over the past 12 months, there have been at least 14 reported kidnappings and one murder, of which at least ten incidents were reportedly linked to Abu Sayyaf, a violent Islamic separatist group operating in the southern Philippines.

Previously, only towing and fishing vessels were targeted, but since October 2016, the terrorist group has attacked three large commercial vessels and one yacht.

In November 2016, terrorists boarded a German yacht and killed one crewmember, and in February 2017, they killed the remaining crewmember after a ransom demand was not met.

Thus far, no U.S. vessels have been involved in these incidents.

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The government of Canada has introduced legislation that would essentially ban oil tankers on British Columbia’s north coast.

The proposed moratorium would complement Canada’s voluntary Tanker Exclusion Zone, in place since 1985.

The proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium Act would bar tankers carrying more than 12,500 metric tons of crude or persistent oils as cargo from stopping, loading or unloading at ports or installations in an area that extends from the Canada/U.S. border in the north to the point on British Columbia’s mainland adjacent to the northern tip of Vancouver Island.

It also includes Haida Gwaii, formerly known as the Queen Charlotte Islands and the Charlottes, an archipelago on the North Coast considered by archaeologists as a possible coastal route taken by the first humans who migrated to the Americas.

The law would apply to the shipment of crude oils as defined by the International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships, as well as related oil products that are heavier and break up and dissipate slowly when spilled.

Introduction of the act fulfills a promise made by the Prime Minister as part of its Oceans Protection Plan.

The government says the moratorium “will provide extra protection for B.C.’s pristine northern coastline, including the Great Bear Rainforest, from potential oil spills.”

It comes six months after the grounding of a Kirby Marine tug, which spilled 30,000 gallons of fuel in the waters of the Inner Passage.

In the wake of the disaster, local residents who saw their livelihoods compromised by the spill demanded a complete ban on tankers in the area.

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President Trump’s much anticipated infrastructure plan will give preference to projects that already have some financing of their own, according to U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.

The Transportation Secretary said May 15 that projects that already have commitments from lenders and local or state authorities would have the greatest access to new federal funds.

She made the remarks at “Infrastructure Week,” a U.S. Chamber of Congress sponsored event in Washington, D.C.

“States and localities that have secured some funding or financing of their own for infrastructure projects will be given higher priority access to new federal funds,” Chao told the audience.

She added that the White House will release its “vision of what the infrastructure plan will look like in the next several weeks.”

The White House proposal will serve as the first step in the process to get infrastructure investment legislation drafted and moving through Congress.

Chao said the administration’s proposal will call for $200 billion in direct federal funding, which would be used to “leverage” $1 trillion in infrastructure investment over the next decade.

She said that the White House plan would also identify for direct government funding infrastructure projects that are “not candidates for private investment” but would help boost the U.S. economy or “lift the American spirit.”

Chao said Trump’s plan, which is being developed by a task force that includes 16 federal agencies, will reflect a “broad and inclusive” definition of infrastructure.
“It not only recognizes traditional infrastructure, such as roads, bridges, railroads, inland waterways and ports,” she said.

“It may also potentially include energy, water, broadband and veterans hospitals as well.”

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There will be an Offshore membership meeting at the MM&P Miami/Port Everglades hiring hall on Thursday, May 25, at 1100.

The meeting will be conducted by MM&P Secretary-Treasurer Steve Werse and Atlantic Ports Vice President Don Josberger. All Offshore members and applicants are encouraged to attend.

The Miami/Port Everglades hiring hall is located at 540 East McNab Rd., Suite B, Pompano Beach, FL 33060-9354.
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A Maritime Day Commemoration-Blessing of the Fleet will be held at Chicago’s Navy Pier onFriday, May 19, at 1100.

The event has been organized by The International Ship Masters’ Association.

It is sponsored by the Maritime Administration, the Coast Guard, the Chicago Police Department Marine Unit, the Chicago Fire Department Marine Unit, the Illinois Department of Natural Resources and the Navy Pier, Chicago and Shoreline Sightseeing Company.
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MM&P Atlantic Ports union halls will be closed on Monday, May 22, for National Maritime Day. All MM&P union halls, the MM&P Plan Office, the MM&P Federal Credit Union and MM&P headquarters will be closed on Monday, May 29, for Memorial Day.

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The American Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial Committee invites you to the National Maritime Day Observance and Memorial Service in San Pedro, Calif. on, Monday, May 22.

Maritime Day honors the merchant mariners who serve our country in peace and war.

The service begins at 1100 at the American Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial at the foot of Sixth Street.

You are also invited to join us after the memorial service for a luncheon at 1200 at the nearby Ports O’Call Restaurant, Berth 76, San Pedro ($45 per person; tables are available).

To support National Maritime Day activities in San Pedro, a commemorative program is produced. Proceeds from the sale of advertising in the commemorative program also go to maintain the memorial itself.

Parking is available at the Ports O’Call Restaurant and shuttle service between the memorial and the restaurant will be provided by San Pedro Trolley.

If you would like more information about attending the event or about advertising, please contact Jerry Aspland, Vice President:; telephone/fax: 714-968-4409.
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MITAGS needs your current address! Have you moved recently? Did you remember to send MITAGS your new address for communications regarding courses? Please send your current contact information to or to the fax number below. New dedicated fax line for Admissions only: 1-443-568-1928. For all other MITAGS business, please continue to use: 410-859-5181.

For class availability or information on MITAGS courses and programs, contact Amanda Meadows, Admissions Coordinator, toll-free at 866-656-5568 or by e-mail:

Why not try our on-line calendar to register for class:

Please note the special addition to our on-campus schedule of MSC classes marked with an asterisk (*), which are not normally scheduled to be held at MITAGS.

AB – 8/21/17, 10/16/17

AIS-1 – Automatic Identifications Systems Orientation: 5/23/17

ARPA-OIC – Automated Radar Plotting Aids: 8/8/17, 9/26/17

AZIPOD 2-Day – 5/22/17, 10/16/17

BRM-35 – Bridge Resource Management: 6/19/17, 9/25/17, 11/13/17

BRMP –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots: 5/22/17, 7/20/17, 11/14/17

BRMP-EMR –Bridge Resource Management for Pilots with Emergency Shiphandling: Contact Admissions

BRMP-Refresher – 5/24/17, 7/17/17, 9/12/17, 10/18/17

BT – Basic Safety Training: 8/14/17, 10/9/17

BT-Revalidation (2-day) – 6/22/17, 8/21/17, 9/28/17, 11/8/17, 12/14/17

BT-Refresher (3-day) – 6/22/17, 8/20/17, 9/28/17, 11/8/17, 12/14/17

CHS-OIC – Cargo Handling Basic: 10/30/17

[CMM – Chief Mate and Master Courses]

ADVNAV-CMM – Advanced Navigation (=ECDIS & VPEN): Contact Admissions

ADVSTB-CMM – Advanced Stability: 6/12/17, 7/31/17, 10/2/17, 12/11/17

ADVWX-CMM – Advanced Meteorology: 6/5/17, 8/7/17, 9/25/17, 12/4/17

CHS-CMM – Advanced Cargo Operations (2 weeks): 10/9/17

ECDIS – Electronic Chart Display Information System: 6/26/17, 8/14/17, 9/18/17

LMS – Leadership and Managerial Skills (Management Level – Formerly MCL-CMM) 6/19/17,8/21/17, 9/11/17

MPP-CMM – Marine Propulsion Plants: 11/27/17

SEC-APPS – Practical Defense Tactics: 7/31/17, 11/6/17

SHMGT-CMM- Ship Management (2 weeks): 10/30/17

SHS-ADV-I-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 1): 6/5/17, 7/17/17, 7/31/17, 8/14/17, 9/11/17,10/2/17, 10/30/17, 12/4/17

SHS-ADV-II-CMM – Advanced Shiphandling (week 2): 6/12/17, 7/24/17, 8/7/17, 8/21/17,9/18/17, 10/9/17, 11/6/17, 12/11/17

**SHS-ADV-I & II now approved to include SAR-CMM assessments at MITAGS effective immediately**

VPEN-CMM – Voyage Planning & Electronic Navigation: 10/23/17

WKP-CMM – Advanced Watchkeeping: 11/13/17

CNAV-OIC – Celestial Navigation: 11/6/17

CONT PLNG – Contingency Planning Workshop: Contact Admissions

CRISIS-COMMS – Crisis Communications: Contact Admissions

CRSMGT – Crisis Management and Human Behavior – 7/11/17

CDMGT – Crowd Management – 7/10/17

DDE – Great Lakes: 6/5/17

DPA – Contact Admissions

ECDIS-OIC – Contact Admissions

ECDIS for Pilots – 5/24/17, 11/14/17

ERM – Engine Resource Management: 7/10/17, 8/28/17, 10/16/17, 12/4/17

FF-BADV – Fire Fighting Combined Basic & Advanced: 8/14/17, 10/9/17

FF-ADV-REV – Advanced Fire Fighting Revalidation & Refresher: 6/20/17, 8/23/17, 9/26/17,11/6/17, 12/12/17

FSM – Fatigue, Sleep, & Medications: 05/22/2017, 9/12/17

GL-Pilot – Great Lakes Pilotage Familiarization: Contact Admissions

GMDSS – Global Maritime Distress and Safety System: 8/21/17

HAZ – Hazardous Materials (5 day): 6/26/17, 8/28/17, 11/27/17

LAP- 9/11/17

LAP-Great Lakes – License Advancement Program – Great Lakes: Contact Admissions

LAP-ORG3rd – License Advancement Program for Original 3rd Mate, Oceans, Any Gross
Ton License: 6/5/17, 8/7/17, 12/4/17

LEG – Legal Aspects of Pilotage: 05/23/2017, 9/13/17

LNG-TPIC – 12/4/17

LTS –Leadership and Teamworking Skills (Formerly MCL-OIC): 8/15/17, 9/25/17 (*2-Evening Session)

MEECE – Management of Electrical and Electronic Control: 07/17/2017, 08/14/2017, 10/23/2017, 12/11/2017

MED-PIC – Medical Person in Charge: 7/10/17, 9/11/17, 10/23/17

MED-PIC-REF– Medical Person in Charge Refresher: 6/26/17, 8/28/17, 11/13/17, 12/4/17

MED-PRO – Medical Care Provider: 9/11/17, 10/23/17, 11/27/17

MED-DOT-DA – Dept. of Transportation Drug & Alcohol Testing: 6/12/17 (Evening), 6/19/17, 7/16/17, 8/25/17, 9/25/17, 10/28/17, 12/11/17

MSA –Maritime Security Awareness: Contact Admissions

[MSC – Military Sealift Command Courses]

MSC-CBRD-1 – Military Sealift Command Chemical, Biological, Radiological Defense Orientation (Basic): 5/25/17, 6/9/17, 8/9/17, 10/2/17

MSC-DC – Military Sealift Command Damage Control: 5/23/17, 6/7/17, 8/7/17, 10/3/17

*MSC-ENVPRO – 6/4/17, 8/6/17, 10/1/17

*MSC-FF-HELO – 6/5/17, 8/13/17, 10/16/17

MSC-SMA – Military Sealift Command Small Arms Qualification: 6/12/17, 7/17/17, 8/13/17, 10/9/17

*MSC-Security Watch Basic – 6/10/17, 8/10/17, 10/5/17

*MSC-Security Watch Advanced – 6/16/17, 7/21/17, 8/12/17, 10/7/17

*MSC-Ship’s Reaction Force – 6/17/17, 7/24/17, 8/18/17, 10/13/17

NSAP-MMP – Navigational Skills Assessment Program-MM&P – 6/13/17, 6/19/17, 7/31/17, 8/14/17, 10/2/17

ROR-1 – Radar Observer Renewal: 8/17/17, 9/25/17

ROR-1N – Radar Observer Renewal Evening Classes: 05/17/17, 6/7/17, 6/21/17, 7/12/17, 7/26/17, 8/9/17, 8/23/17, 9/20/17, 10/4/17, 10/18/17, 11/1/17, 11/8/17, 11/15/17, 11/29/17, 12/6/17, 12/13/17

ROU-OIC – Radar Observer Program – Unlimited: 7/31/17

SAR-OIC – Search & Rescue – 10/16/17

SHS-BAS-OIC – Basic Shiphandling: 8/28/17, 10/23/17

SHS-EMR5 – Emergency Shiphandling-5 Day – 6/26/17, 8/7/17, 9/25/17, 11/27/17

SMS – Contact Admissions

STB-OIC – Ship Construction and Basic Stability: 8/7/17

TCNAV/CO – Terrestrial Navigation and Compasses: 7/10/17

TPIC – Tankerman Person in Charge: 8/7/17

TRAC-TUG-2: 06/29/2017

TTT – Contact Admissions

VPDSD – Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties: 5/25/17

VSO – Vessel Security Officer: 5/22/17, 7/13/17, 9/6/17

WKP-OIC – Watchkeeping (Operational Level): 10/2/17

WX-OIC –Meteorology (Operational Level): 9/11/17

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Winter-Spring 2017

For registration, please contact our registrar, Mary McGhee, at 206.838.1126 or You can also view our schedule and enroll online at

May 2017

20-22 Basic Training Refresher
23rd Radar Renewal
30th Leadership & Teamworking Skills
31-2 Security Officer – Vessel, Company, and Facility

June 2017

5-9 Medical Care Provider
5-9 Basic Shiphandling
5-16 Medical Person-In-Charge
10-12 Basic Training Refresher
12-16 Basic Training
12-16 Cargo Handling and Stowage – Operational Level
19th Vessel Personnel w/ Designated Security Duties
20th Radar Renewal
19-22 Advanced Firefighting
19-23 Advanced Watchkeeping
19-23 Leadership & Managerial Skills
24-26 Basic Training Refresher
26-30 Engine Resource Management
27-29 Integrated Electronic Navigation

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The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly is the official electronic newsletter of the International Organization of Masters, Mates, & Pilots, ILA, AFL-CIO, 700 Maritime Blvd. Suite B, Linthicum Heights, MD 21090-1953. Phone: 410-850-8700; Fax: 410-850-0973. All rights reserved. The MM&P Wheelhouse Weekly © 2017. Articles can be reprinted without prior permission if credit is given to The MM&P WheelhouseWeekly. For subscriptions, address changes or messages to the editor or to MM&P headquarters, e-mail Back issues of The Weekly are posted on