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Senate-Passed Highway Transportation Bill Includes Ports Language

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

(North American Meat Institute)

The Senate last Thursday voted 65-34 to approve a six-year highway bill (HR 22), which would fund federal highway and infrastructure projects for three years. The bill included language requiring port operators to publish metrics and data related to efficiency, primarily in container loading and off-loading on ship and truck turn times. The measure also would require management or labor to provide empirical evidence to indicate when a port slowdown is occurring. The House of Representatives will consider the Senate-passed legislation following the August recess.

While there had been speculation that country-of-origin labeling (COOL) might be debated as an amendment to the highway bill, no COOL amendments were offered. Congress must now wait until after the August recess to address COOL in an effort to avoid retaliatory tariffs imposed by Canada and Mexico.

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