House approves legislation to strengthen supply chain

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On Friday, U.S. Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO) said the House had approved legislation to improve U.S. maritime supply chains.

The legislation was one of three pieces passed by the House under the jurisdiction of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee (T&I) that Graves chairs. The Ocean Shipping Reform Implementation Act of 2023, introduced by U.S. Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD), builds upon the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 and updates federal policy governing international ocean shipping, and limits foreign influence over the U.S. supply chain.

Officials said the bill would establish a process to report incidents of market manipulation and anticompetitive practices by shipping exchanges to the Federal Maritime Commission (FMC). Additionally, the bill, if passed, would prohibit the FMC from requiring ocean carriers to report information already reported to other federal agencies. The bill bans recipients of federal grant dollars from using Chinese state-controlled software in port operations.

“The FMC needs the authority to crack down on China’s unfair shipping practices,” said Johnson. “The Ocean Shipping Reform Implementation Act will build off the progress from my Ocean Shipping Reform Act and give the FMC the authority to further secure our ocean shipping supply chains,” said Rep. Johnson. “Thanks to the Committee’s work and Rep. Garamendi’s partnership, we got this bill across the finish line.”

Other passed T&I legislation included a bill reigning in spending by the General Services Administration by requiring the agency of notifying Congress of any cost escalations of more than five percent on GSA capital projects; and a bill establishing a GAO study on crime in and around public buildings, and how that impacts building usage, commuting methods and maintenance costs.

“I want to thank Congressman Johnson for introducing the Ocean Shipping Reform Implementation Act and his tireless work to help strengthen America’s supply chain,” Graves said. “Congresswoman Chavez-DeRemer has been a leader on our committee in cutting federal waste in federal office space and real estate utilization, and in working to improve the security and safety of our federal buildings and surrounding areas. I commend them both for their efforts, and I urge the Senate to pass these important pieces of legislation.”

All three pieces of legislation now go to the Senate for a vote.