U.S. Representative Mazie Hirono recommitted her support for the Jones Act while attending the recent Hawaii Ports Maritime Council barbecue.
Speaking before nearly 50 union members, Hirono, as well as former Honolulu Mayor Mufi Hannemann, said the nation’s freight cabotage law remains important to America’s economic and national security.
Council President Randy Swindell and Executive Secretary-Treasurer Hazel Galbiso thanked both officials for their solid support of U.S. merchant mariners.
The speakers also praised the professionalism of U.S. civilian mariners and the important role that the U.S. maritime industry plays in the economic life of Hawaii.
According to Hirono, maintaining a vibrant U.S. maritime industry is just one way of preserving skilled, good-paying middle-class jobs in the state of Hawaii. Congress also needs to work with the administration to come up with an economic package to generate more employment opportunities for Americans during these difficult economic times. Among the policies mentioned was additional funding for infrastructure projects, especially those involving port modernization.