Rep. Scott Supports SAFE Port Act

May 4, 2006
Press Release
(Washington D.C.) - Congressman Robert C. "Bobby" Scott today supported the Security and Accountability for Every (SAFE) Port Act.

Rep. Scott represents the Newport News/Hampton Roads area of Virginia, which is home to the Virginia Port Authority. The Virginia Port Authority controls terminals in Norfolk, Newport News, and Portsmouth and has more than 75 international shipping lines and one of the most frequent direct sailing schedules of any port. The facilities that encompass the international terminals of Hampton Roads play a vital role in the transport of global commerce. That role is expanding each year and is expected to do so for the next 20 years. Rep. Scott also represents the future home of the major East Coast Maersk APM Terminals to be located in Portsmouth.

"This means the enhanced security and safety of our port and harbor is paramount, and I want to do my part to ensure that the Virginia Port Authority has what it needs to remain safe and secure," said Congressman Scott.

Rep. Scott supports improved security measures for all ports, large and small. The Port of Richmond is also in the Third Congressional District of Virginia and serves as a major artery for commerce as well as an alternate to the ports of Hampton Roads in the event of any terrorist attack or other disaster. Therefore, it is crucial that the Port of Richmond is always prepared to accept expanded commerce should the need suddenly arise.

Rep. Scott recognizes that port security is not just an issue in Virginia, but in every district because the containers unloaded at all ports are then placed on trains and trucks that travel to every congressional district.

The SAFE Port Act contains provisions appropriately addressing high-risk containers by identifying the contents of the container, the identity of the shipper and consignee, the port of origin and the destination. The SAFE Port Act also will establish much needed port security training programs, improve employee identification, and implement appropriate measures for evaluating Federal, state, local, and foreign governments, seaport personnel, and non-governmental emergency response providers.

"The major ports in my district are critical to the vitality of our community, our economy, and our national defense. I believe the SAFE Port Act is a solid first step towards improving port security," concluded Rep. Scott.

The SAFE Port Act passed by a vote of 421 - 2.