NIT LEAGUE: PROPOSED PORT SECURITY FEE NEEDS MORE STUDY
The National Industrial Transportation League has asked Congress to halt the development of a proposed port user security fee until after further study.
The NIT League ” strongly opposes this particular proposal because too many questions remain unanswered about it,” said Edward M. Emmett, president of the Arlington, Va.-based industry group, in a letter this week to both House and Senate conferees considering port security legislation. “In fact, there has not even been an opportunity for interested parties to publicly raise questions.”
The NIT League said a port security user fee would be borne by shippers and receivers of cargo. The group believes that every entity in the supply chain, such as stevedores, terminals, truckers and railroads, will benefit from improved security and should also shoulder some of the cost.
“Moreover, shippers and receivers of freight are already contributing heavily to a more secure system, both through direct expenditures such as improved equipment for security purposes, as well as, incurring higher costs of complying with more rigorous security requirements,” Emmett said.
He added that many shippers already participate in the U.S. Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism and Container Security Initiative.
NIT League, however, approves of the need for “substantial improvements in the security of international maritime trade” and will continue to work with Congress, the administration and industry in “fashioning effective and responsive security measures that prevent terrorism without crippling the nation’s commerce.”