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SEC. 610. [46 App. U.S.C. 1180] An operating-differential subsidy shall not be paid under authority of this title on account of the operation of any vessel which does not meet the following requirements: (1) The vessel shall be of steel or other acceptable metal, shall be propelled by steam or motor, shall be as nearly fireproof as practicable, shall be built in a domestic yard or shall have been documented under the laws of the United States not later than February 1, 1928, or actually ordered and under construction for the account of citizens of the United States prior to such date, and shall be documented under the laws of the United States, during the entire life of the subsidy contract; and (2) if the vessel shall be constructed after the passage of this Act it shall be either a vessel constructed according to plans and specifications approved by the Secretary of Transportation and the Secretary of the Navy, with particular reference to economical conversion into an auxiliary naval vessel, or a vessel approved by the Secretary of Transportation and the Navy Department as otherwise useful to the United States in time of national emergency.
SEC. 611. [46 App. U.S.C. 1181] (a) The contractor, upon compliance with the provisions of this section, may transfer to foreign registry the vessels covered by any operating-differential subsidy contract held by him, in the event that the United States defaults upon such contract or cancels it without just cause. Any contractor desiring to transfer any such vessel to foreign registry upon such default or cancellation shall file an application in writing with the Secretary of Transportation setting forth its contention with respect to the lack of just cause or lawful grounds for such default or cancellation. The Secretary of Transportation shall afford the contractor an opportunity for a hearing within twenty days after such contractor files written application therefor, and after the testimony, if any, in such hearing has been reduced to writing and filed with the Secretary of Transportation, he shall, within a reasonable time, grant or deny the application by order.
(b) If any such application is denied, the contractor may obtain a review of the order of denial in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, by filing in such court, within twenty days after the entry of such order, a written petition praying that the order of the Secretary of Transportation be set aside. A copy of such petition shall be forthwith transmitted by the clerk of the court to the Secretary of Transportation or any officer designated by him for that purpose, and thereupon the Secretary of Transportation shall file in the court, the record upon which the order complained of was entered as provided in section 2112 of title 28, United States Code. Upon the filing of such petition such court shall have exclusive jurisdiction to determine whether such cancellation or default was without just cause, and to affirm or set aside such order. The judgment and decree of the court affirming or setting aside any such order of the Secretary of Transportation shall be final.
(c) No transfer of vessels to foreign registry under this section shall become effective until any indebtedness to the Government or to any citizen of the United States, secured by such vessels, has been paid or discharged, and until after the expiration of ninety days from the date of final determination of the application or the
appeal, if any. Within such ninety-day period the Secretary of Transportation may (1) with the consent of the contractor purchase the vessels at cost to the contractor plus cost of capital improvements thereon, less 4 per centum annual depreciation upon such vessel, and the actual depreciated costs of capital improvements thereon, or (2) reinstate the contract and adjust or settle the default found by the Secretary of Transportation or the court to exist.
[Section 612 repealed by section 307(7) of Public Law 101–225.]
SEC. 613. [46 App. U.S.C. 1183] (a) In this section, "passenger vessel" means a vessel which (1) is of not less than ten thousand gross tons, and (2) has accommodations for not less than one hundred passengers.
(b) If the Secretary of Transportation finds that the operation of any passenger vessel with respect to which a contract for the payment of an operating-differential subsidy has been entered into under section 603 of this title effective before January 2, 1960, is not required for all of each year, in order to furnish adequate service on the service, route, or line covered by such contract, he may amend such contract to agree to pay an operating differential subsidy for operation of the vessel (1) on such service, route, or line for some part or no part of each year, and (2) on cruises for all or part of each year if such specific cruise is approved by the Secretary of Transportation under subsection (e) of this section: Provided, however, That no such vessel may cruise for more than seven months of each year to ports which are regularly served by another United States-flag passenger vessel pursuant to an operating-differential subsidy contract.
(c) The Secretary of Transportation may authorize passenger vessels under operating-differential subsidy contracts to provide domestic service between specified ports while the vessels are on voyages in an essential service in the foreign commerce of the United States without reduction of operating-differential subsidy and the partial payback of construction-differential subsidy for operating in the domestic trades, if he finds that such domestic service will not result in a substantial deviation from the service, route, or line for which operating-differential subsidy is paid and will not adversely affect service on such service, route, or line.
(d) When a vessel is being operated on cruises or has been authorized under this section to provide domestic passenger services while on voyages in an essential service in foreign commerce of the United States
(1) except as provided in subdivision (4) of this subsection, it shall carry no mail unless required by law, or cargo except passengers' luggage, except between those ports between which it may carry mail and cargo on its regular service assigned by contract;
(2) it may not carry one-way passengers between those ports served by another United States carrier on its regular service assigned by contract, without the consent of such carrier, except between those ports between which it may carry one-way passengers on its own regular service assigned by contract;
(3) it shall stop at other domestic ports only for the same time and the same purpose as is permitted with respect to a foreign-flag vessel which is carrying passengers who embarked at a domestic port, except that a cruise may end at a different port or coast from that where it began and may embark or disembark passengers at other domestic ports, either when not involving transportation in the domestic offshore trade in competition with a United States-flag passenger vessel offering berth service therein, or, if involving such transportation, with the consent of such carrier: Provided, however, That nothing herein shall be construed to repeal or modify section 805(a) of this Act.
(4) Any other provisions of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936, or of the Shipping Act, 1916, to the contrary notwithstanding, with the approval of the Secretary of Transportation, it may carry cargo and mail between ports to the extent such carriage is not in direct competition with a carrier offering United States-flag berth service between those ports, or, if such carriage is in direct competition with one or more carriers offering United States flag berth service between such ports, with the consent of the next scheduled United States-flag carrier, which consent shall not be unreasonably withheld in the judgment of the Maritime Administrator.
Section 605(c) of this Act shall not apply to cruises authorized under this section. Notwithstanding the applicable provisions of section 605(a) and section 506 of this Act requiring the reduction of operating differential subsidy and the partial payback of construction differential subsidy for operating in the domestic trades, such reduction of operating subsidy and partial payback of construction subsidy under sections 605(a) and 506, respectively, shall not apply to cruises or domestic services authorized under this section.
(e) Upon the application of any operator for approval of a specific cruise, the Secretary of Transportation, after notice to all other American flag operators who may be affected and after affording all such operators an opportunity to submit written data, views or arguments, with or without opportunity to present the same orally in any manner, and after consideration of all relevant matter presented, shall approve the proposed cruise, if he determines that the proposed cruise will not substantially adversely affect an existing operator's service performed with passenger vessels of United States registry. Such approval shall not be given more than two years in advance of the beginning of the cruise.
SEC. 614. [46 App. U.S.C. 1184] (a) Any operator receiving operating differential subsidy funds may elect, for all or a portion of its ships, to suspend its operating differential subsidy contract with all attendant statutory and contractual restrictions, except as to those pertaining to the domestic intercoastal or coastwise service, including any agreement providing for the replacement of vessels, if—
(1) the vessel is less than ten years of age;
(2) the suspension period is not less than twelve months; (3) the operator's financial condition is maintained at a level acceptable to the Secretary of Commerce; and
(4) the owner agrees to pay to the Secretary, upon such terms and conditions as he may prescribe, an amount which bears the same proportion to the construction differential subsidy paid by the Secretary as the portion of the suspension period during which the vessel is operated in any preference trade from which a subsidized vessel would otherwise be excluded by law or contract bears to the entire economic life of the vessel.
(b) Any operator making an election under this section is entitled to full reinstatement of the suspended contract on request. The Secretary of Commerce may prescribe rules and regulations consistent with the purpose of this section.
SEC. 615. [46 App. U.S.C. 1185] (a) The Secretary of Commerce may, until September 30, 1983, authorize an operator receiving or applying for operating differential subsidy under this title to construct, reconstruct, or acquire its vessels of over five thousand deadweight tons in a foreign shipyard if the Secretary finds and certifies in writing that such operator's application for construction differential subsidy cannot be approved due to the unavailability of funds in the construction differential subsidy account. Vessels constructed, reconstructed, or modified pursuant to this section shall be deemed to have been United States built for the purposes of this title, section 901(b) of this Act, and section 5(7) of the Port and Tanker Safety Act of 1978 (46 U.S.C. 391(a)(7)): Provided, That the provisions of section 607 of this Act shall not apply to vessels constructed, reconstructed, modified, or acquired pursuant to this section.
(b) The provisions of this section shall be effective for fiscal year 1983 only if the President in his annual budget message for that year requests at least $100,000,000 in construction differential subsidy or proposes an alternate program that would create equivalent merchant shipbuilding activity in privately owned United States shipyards and the Secretary reports to Congress on the effect such action will have on the shipyard mobilization base at least thirty days prior to making the certification referred to in subsection (a).
SEC. 616. [46 App. U.S.C. 1185a] (a) After the date of enactment of the Maritime Security Act of 1996, the Secretary of Transportation shall not enter into any new contract for operating-differential subsidy under this subtitle.
(b) Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, any operating-differential subsidy contract in effect under this title on the day before the date of enactment of the Maritime Security Act of 1996 shall continue in effect and terminate as set forth in the contract, unless voluntarily terminated at an earlier date by the parties (other than the United States Government) to the contract.
(c) The essential service requirements of section1 601(a) and 603(b), and the provisions of sections 605(c) and 809(a), shall not apply to the operating-differential subsidy program under this subtitle effective upon the earlier of—
(1) the date that a payment is made, under the Maritime Security Program established by subtitle B to a contractor
1 So in original. Probably should be "sections".
under that subtitle who is not party to an operating-differential subsidy contract under this subtitle, with the Secretary to cause notice of the date of such payment to be published in the Federal Register as soon as possible; or
(2) with respect to a particular contractor under the operating-differential subsidy program, the date that contractor enters into a contract with the Secretary under the Maritime Security Program established by subtitle B.
(d)(1) Notwithstanding any other provision of law, a vessel may be transferred and registered under an effective United States-controlled foreign flag if—
(A) the operator of the vessel receives an operating-differential subsidy pursuant to a contract under this subtitle which is in force on October 1, 1994, and the Secretary approves the replacement of such vessel with a comparable vessel, or
(B) the vessel is covered by an operating agreement under subtitle B, and the Secretary approves the replacement of such vessel with a comparable vessel for inclusion in the Maritime Security Fleet established under subtitle B.
(2) Any such vessel may be requisitioned by the Secretary of Transportation pursuant to section 902.
Subtitle B-Maritime Security Fleet Program
ESTABLISHMENT OF FLEET
SEC. 651. [46 App. U.S.C. 1187] (a) IN GENERAL.-The Secretary of Transportation shall establish a fleet of active, militarily useful, privately-owned vessels to meet national defense and other security requirements and maintain a United States presence in international commercial shipping. The Fleet shall consist of privately owned, United States-flag vessels for which there are in effect operating agreements under this subtitle, and shall be known as the Maritime Security Fleet.
(b) VESSEL ELIGIBILITY.—A vessel is eligible to be included in the Fleet if the vessel is self-propelled and—
(1)(A) is operated by a person as an ocean common carrier; (B) whether in commercial service, on charter to the Department of Defense, or in other employment, is either—
(i) a roll-on/roll-off vessel with a carrying capacity of at least 80,000 square feet or 500 twenty-foot equivalent units; or
(ii) a lighter aboard ship vessel with a barge capacity of at least 75 barges; or
(C) any other type of vessel that is determined by the Secretary to be suitable for use by the United States for national defense or military purposes in time of war or national emergency;
(2)(A)(i) is a United States-documented vessel; and
(ii) on the date an operating agreement covering the vessel is entered into under this subtitle, is
(I) a LASH vessel that is 25 years of age or less; or (II) any other type of vessel that is 15 years of age or