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3 hours ago, 51st FMS said:

What are the chances of an Alaskan cruise this summer?  Will the US suspend the Jones Law?  Will the Cruise lines pay the $25,000 in fines?  Any thoughts?

They have already discussed temporarily dropping the requirement for a foreign port. The government decide not to waive the require in Passenger Vessel service Act of 1886. The jones Act has nothing to do with passenger vessels only cabotage and working conditions on American Flagged vessels.

The current government thru the CDC doesn't have any inclination to help the cruise industry even thou it's over a $150 billion a year industry.

Edited by Kamloops50
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20 hours ago, 51st FMS said:

What are the chances of an Alaskan cruise this summer?  Will the US suspend the Jones Law?  Will the Cruise lines pay the $25,000 in fines?  Any thoughts?

Cruise Lines will not sail unless there is some temporary legal reprieve. Fines really have nothing to do with it. Passenger vessels can't pay their way out of these laws. The two Senators and Rep. from Alaska have asked for some relief. It could be attached to some bill, but I wouldn't hold my breath. 

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On 2/8/2021 at 10:31 AM, Cruise Raider said:

It's unlikely the PVSA will be suspended.  I am already looking at changing my sailing from this summer to next year.  

We rebooked our 8/21 Alaskan sailing from SF to 8/22.  Since it’s 10 days, Princess already canceled it, anyway. 

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We have a cruise scheduled for late June to Alaska. If it goes it goes, if it doesn't oh well we'll go in 2022.  The economy in Alaska is hurting big time do to the lack of tourism. I hope they get it all settled and we can go.

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After many cruises I too always referred to the need for ships to stop at a foreign port as the Jones Act.  In fact this is not correct from my reading today. 

The Jones Act dealt with goods transported from port to port but in fact the REAL culprit that affects cruise ships is the PVSA, the Passenger Vessel Services Act.

If you google the last terms you will find that it is a doozy in that you just can't stop at ANY port it often has to be a "distant" port if your cruise started in one US city but disembarked in a different city. 

On the other hand, If you start in Seattle and end in Seattle or similar examples on the East coast, then ANY foreign port in sufficient;  aka on a round trip from Boston, then Canada, Bermuda or any Caribbean island would qualify.  Attempts in the past to bypass the PVSA have failed so it doesn't look good now.

 

It gets VERY tricky for passengers who book back to back cruises because if THEIR itinerary violates the PVSA, THEY are liable for the rather hefty fine.

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Royal Caribbean Not to Cancel Any Canada and Alaska Cruises (cruisehive.com)

 

I am hoping this link worked ... if not, it looks like a slim chance they will be successful and end up having to cancel these sailings but, there may be a glimmer of hope for those that choose to view the glass as half full.  Time will tell.  

 

 

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On 2/8/2021 at 12:18 PM, 51st FMS said:

What are the chances of an Alaskan cruise this summer?  Will the US suspend the Jones Law?  Will the Cruise lines pay the $25,000 in fines?  Any thoughts?

Not likely that the PVSA will be waived, as the waivers are granted only for "national security reasons", and specifically not for "commercial expediency".  Further, it is not just a question of planning the cruise and then paying the fine.  A ship that knowingly violates the PVSA risks the USCG Captain of the Port (the senior officer in the USCG in an area, and in charge of all ports in his/her sector) banning the ship from entering US waters.

 

As for the comments on back to back, all fines under the PVSA are for the cruise line, not the passenger, but it is the ticket contract that allows the cruise line to pass the fine to the passenger.

 

To those who claim the CDC is purposely ignoring the cruise industry, I say that they are concentrating assets on the most important priority, the situation in the country as a whole, rather than any one industry.

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I just received an email saying there is a small time change for my flights on my June 2021 Alaska cruise.    It is still showing on my personalizer - although all of my canceled cruises have stayed there for many weeks after being canceled.

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Both the Jones Act and the PVSA share many sections of the USC, including 46 USC 501 which covers waivers.  In the past, any request from the Secretary of Defense for a waiver had to be granted, if it used the term "national security" as the reason.  The new National Defense Authorization bill passed by Congress in January, changes that section of 46USC501 to require that the requested waiver also show that it is in "direct support of active military operations".  This further limits the ability of the Executive branch in granting Jones Act/PVSA waivers.

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18 hours ago, chengkp75 said:

The new National Defense Authorization bill passed by Congress in January, changes that section of 46USC501 to require that the requested waiver also show that it is in "direct support of active military operations".  This further limits the ability of the Executive branch in granting Jones Act/PVSA waivers.

 

Wasn't the Jones act suspended several years ago to allow foreign vessels to participate in the cleanup of oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico?

 

If so, in the future that would not appear to be part of a military operation and thus not allowed.

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3 hours ago, caribill said:

 

Wasn't the Jones act suspended several years ago to allow foreign vessels to participate in the cleanup of oil spills in the Gulf of Mexico?

 

If so, in the future that would not appear to be part of a military operation and thus not allowed.

The "military operation" requirement is placed only on requests from the DOD, which in the past were required to be granted.  Any other agency or entity requesting a waiver only needs to show that the waiver is in the interest of "national security" and that no US flag vessel could provide the service.  While the "national security" concept was a stretch, if you consider the environment to be "national security" then it passes, and for sure there were no US flag oil skimmer vessels.  Many US flag vessels, including tankers were used in the operation.

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