Entries in Ports (3)


Sequestration and Projected Furloughs Causing Concern

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Across-the-board spending cuts are forcing U.S. Customs and Border Protection to make cutbacks.  The result is already evident in the Port of Long Beach in California.

Sean Strawbridge, the managing director for the port, says essential operations are already being affected less than a week into sequestration.  He says there is already a backup of ships waiting to dock.

Strawbridge says the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach move over a billion dollars worth of goods a day “so any impact has an amplified effect not only on the local economy but the regional and the nation economy as well.”

At California’s Port of Hueneme, port CEO Kristen Decase says the Fed has cut overtime, which means the port can no longer conduct business on Saturdays.

Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said on Tuesday that expected furloughs at Customs and Border Protection would mean wait times at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York would increase 50 percent.

Speaking at a New York Police Department counterterror meeting, Napolitano said at peak arrival times, the wait at Customs could be four hours.

The National Air Traffic Controllers Association announced on Tuesday that the Federal Aviation Administration has informed the group that it intends to send furlough notices to all its employees, a decision that the association says beginning next month will result in “fewer air traffic controllers in towers and radar rooms helping our national airspace work.”

The association issued a statement saying that as a result of the sequester-generated furloughs “fewer flights will be able to take off and land and the traveling public and the many businesses that rely on our air travel system will be impacted by the delays.”

The air traffic controllers group warns that the FAA “intends to close many towers around the country that provide critically important safety and efficiency services to aviation, keeping our system vibrant, growing and crucial to our economy.”

Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio


Port Strike in California Ends After Eight Days

Laura Lezza/Getty Images (file photo)(LOS ANGELES) -- The stalemate between union workers and shipping companies that crippled two ports in California for more than a week is over.

Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa announced late Tuesday night that an agreement was reached after accompanying federal mediators to the talks.

"I think its appropriate to say mission accomplished," Villaraigosa said.

The eight-day strike shut down 10 of the 14 terminals in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, through which nearly half of the nation's cargo moves.  The walkout left billions of dollars worth of goods sitting in the water, unable to be delivered to stores and other businesses across the U.S.

The National Retail Federation had called on President Obama to intervene in the strike, saying most of its members have been affected.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Occupy Protests Disrupt West Coast Port Operations

KIMIHIRO HOSHINO/AFP/Getty Images(OAKLAND, Calif.) -- Some major ports along the West Coast were affected Monday when protesters from the Occupy Wall Street movement showed up uninvited to make life difficult for shippers and truckers in an event called "Occupy the Ports."

Occupy Wall Street said the point of the rallies at ports that included Seattle, Portland, Ore., Los Angeles, San Francisco, Oakland and Long Beach, Calif., was to once again shine a light on the economic woes that have beset the overwhelming majority of Americans they've dubbed the "99-percenters."  In fact, the demonstrations stretched down as far south as the Port of Houston where protesters clashed with police.

But those who certainly aren't in the group's demonized "1 percent" were just collateral damage to the protesters, whose actions spawned delays that hit truckers -- not CEOs -- in their wallets. Port workers vented their frustration with the protest, which halted or disrupted operations in some cases, costing workers a day's pay and fines for truckers who were liable for late deliveries.

Unions complained that they weren't notified first about the demonstrations and how much they'd cost the average port worker in a day's wage.

Occupy Wall Street was also showing its contempt for Goldman Sachs Group Inc., which owns a stake in the largest cargo-terminal operator.  About 250 people in New York City tried to block the entrance to Goldman Sachs' headquarters on Wall Street as police only allowed those with identification to enter the building.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio