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November 08, 2005

Feds deny full waiver for USVI charter boats

Who knows what the economic and long term effect will be of this law, but is doesn't sound very encouraging:

ST THOMAS, USVI: Congressional Delegate Donna Christiansen announced Wednesday that the US Department of Homeland Security will not grant a waiver to charter yacht boats in the Virgin Islands from the Advanced Passenger Information System (APIS) requirement that all vessels transmit a passenger and crew manifest to US Customs and Border Protection prior to arrival at a US port.

Delegate Christiansen requested the waiver when it became known that the regulation would soon be enforced. Charter yacht boaters who make trips to the British Virgin Islands are especially concerned about the requirement to transmit a manifest as early as 96 hours, but not later than 24 hours prior to departure.

In a letter to Delegate Christiansen, Asst. Homeland Security Secretary Pamela Turner wrote that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) "recognized a need to accommodate the industry you represent, as well as the industry in the Great Lakes and Southern Florida where multiple voyages can occur within a 24 hour period, CBP has instructed its ports to exercise prosecutorial discretion and waive the 24 hour turnaround time for vessels that are engaged in 'short-turn' voyages."

From CaribbeanNetNews - more here.

The physical realities of the proximity of the U.S. and British Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico, make laws like this extremely inconvenient at the least. It is going to be a challenge to enforce. Let's hope it doesn't prove to be an economic burden too.

Posted by afinta at November 8, 2005 10:40 AM


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