The Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation conducts oversight of the United States Coast Guard, the Service responsible for enforcing the Nation’s laws on waters under U.S. jurisdiction and on the high seas. The Coast Guards many missions include search and rescue, illegal drug and migrant interdiction, oil spill prevention and response, maritime safety and security, maintaining aids to navigation, icebreaking, and enforcement of U.S. fisheries and marine pollution laws.
The Subcommittee also has jurisdiction over regulation of ocean shipping and the merchant marine, except as it relates to national security.
One of the Subcommittee’s regular priorities is legislation to authorize the Coast Guard’s programs and to support and strengthen the important missions of one of the Nation’s five armed services.
Issues and agencies under the jurisdiction of the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Subcommittee include:
- United States Coast Guard
- Maritime transportation safety
- Navigation, port and waterway safety
- Maritime transportation regulatory activities, including the regulation of vessels and merchant seaman
- Marine environmental protection, generally as related to vessel operations (oil and plastics pollution, invasive/aquatic nuisance species transported by vessels, international agreements concerning transportation of oil and hazardous substances)
- State boating safety programs
- Federal Maritime Commission and the regulation of ocean shipping
- The Jones Act (United States cabotage laws governing shipping of goods and passengers between any two points in the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone)
- Non-national security aspects of the merchant marine