2019 American Waterways Operators Annual Report Issue 2019 - Page 5

■ Working with the Trump Administration and Congress to streamline burdensome regulatory requirements without compromising safety, security or the environment, including by: • Eliminating radar refresher training requirements for mariners. • Securing re-approval of the AWO Alternative Security Plan, which saves members the expense and administrative burden of developing their own security plans. • Securing House passage and Senate Commerce Committee approval of legislation to suspend the imposition of towing vessel inspection user fees. • Securing EPA’s commitment to revise its framework for evaluating the adequacy of proposed No Discharge Zones to accommodate commercial vessels. ■ Advocating with government stakeholders inside and outside the Beltway to secure policies and funding to keep commerce moving safely and efficiently on our waterways in the aftermath of historic high water conditions, and for the long-term. • Worked with coalition partners to successfully lobby the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to expedite completion of critical repairs to the Ballard Locks, cutting 52 days of outage time from scheduled maintenance. • Worked through the River Industry Executive Task Force to promote safe navigation during high water conditions. • Secured an additional $1.8 million in funding to allow continued dredging in the Rock Island District. • Worked with waterways stakeholders to persuade the Illinois Department of Transportation not to sponsor a public-private partnership proposal for the Illinois River. ■ Teaming with other maritime stakeholders to secure a U.S. Supreme Court ruling rejecting punitive damages for unseaworthiness claims. ■ Educating federal and state policymakers on the criticality of our industry through testimony before Congress and more than 500 meetings with Congressional, Administration, and key state and local officials. ■ Sponsoring 17 tugboat and towboat tours to provide Members of Congress and their staffs with firsthand knowledge of our industry. ■ Organizing the annual Barge-In on Capitol Hill to educate policymakers on the policies needed to position our industry to continue making vital contributions to American prosperity and security. ■ Drawing the public’s attention to our industry’s contributions to the nation’s prosperity and security by: • Creating an industry educational video that has generated over 22,000 online views and is currently airing on PBS stations nationwide. • Creating the AWO member Social Media Working Group to amplify industry presence on social media. • Producing and distributing a 75th anniversary book highlighting 75 years of AWO advocacy and safety leadership. • Implementing full-scale navigational improvements and content updates to the AWO website. • Strategically placing op-eds and ads in key trade and mainstream press publications. 2019 ANNUAL REPORT A BRIDGE TO OUR FUTURE 3 n