[USC02] 46 USC Ch. 503: ADMINISTRATIVE
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46 USC Ch. 503: ADMINISTRATIVE
From Title 46—SHIPPINGSubtitle V—Merchant MarinePart A—General

CHAPTER 503—ADMINISTRATIVE

Sec.
50301.
Vessel Operations Revolving Fund.
50302.
Port development.
50303.
Operating property and extending term of notes.
50304.
Sale and transfer of property.
50305.
Appointment of trustee or receiver and operation of vessels.
50306.
Requiring testimony and records in investigations.
50307.
Maritime environmental and technical assistance program.

        

Amendments

2012Pub. L. 112–213, title IV, §403(b), Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1570, added item 50307.

§50301. Vessel Operations Revolving Fund

(a) In General.—There is a "Vessel Operations Revolving Fund" for use by the Secretary of Transportation in carrying out duties and powers related to vessel operations, including charter, operation, maintenance, repair, reconditioning, and improvement of merchant vessels under the jurisdiction of the Secretary. The Fund has a working capital of $20,000,000, to remain available until expended.

(b) Relationship to Other Laws.—Notwithstanding any other law, rates for shipping services provided under the Fund shall be prescribed by the Secretary and the Fund shall be credited with receipts from vessel operations conducted under the Fund. Sections 1(a) and (c), 3(c), and 4 of the Act of March 24, 1943 (50 App. U.S.C. 1291(a), (c), 1293(c), 1294),1 apply to those operations and to seamen employed through general agents as employees of the United States Government. Notwithstanding any other law on the employment of persons by the Government, the seamen may be employed in accordance with customary commercial practices in the maritime industry.

(c) Advancements.—With the approval of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the Secretary may advance amounts the Secretary considers necessary, but not more than 2 percent of vessel operating expenses, from the Fund to the appropriation "Salaries and Expenses" in carrying out duties and powers related to vessel operations, without regard to the limitations on amounts stated in that appropriation.

(d) Transfers.—The unexpended balances of working funds or of allocation accounts established after January 1, 1951, for the activities provided for in subsection (a), and receipts received from those activities, may be transferred to the Fund, which shall be available for the purposes of those working funds or allocation accounts.

(e) Limitation.—

(1) In general.—Amounts made available to the Secretary for maritime activities by this section or any other law may not be used to pay for a vessel described in paragraph (2) unless the compensation to be paid is computed under section 56303 of this title as that section is interpreted by the Comptroller General.

(2) Applicable vessels.—Paragraph (1) applies to a vessel—

(A) the title to which is acquired by the Government by requisition or purchase;

(B) the use of which is taken by requisition or agreement; or

(C) lost while insured by the Government.


(3) Nonapplicable vessels.—Paragraph (1) does not apply to a vessel under a construction-differential subsidy contract.


(f) Availability for Additional Purposes.—The Fund is available for—

(1) necessary expenses incurred in the protection, preservation, maintenance, acquisition, or use of vessels involved in mortgage foreclosure or forfeiture proceedings instituted by the Government, including payment of prior claims and liens, expenses of sale, or other related charges;

(2) necessary expenses incident to the redelivery and lay-up, in the United States, of vessels chartered as of June 20, 1956, under agreements not calling for their return to the Government;

(3) the activation, repair, and deactivation of merchant vessels chartered for limited emergency purposes during fiscal year 1957 under the jurisdiction of the Secretary; and

(4) payment of expenses of custody and maintenance of Government-owned vessels not in the National Defense Reserve Fleet.


(g) Expenses and Receipts Related to Charter Operations.—The Fund is available for expenses incurred in activating, repairing, and deactivating merchant vessels chartered under the jurisdiction of the Secretary. Receipts from charter operations of Government-owned vessels under the jurisdiction of the Secretary shall be credited to the Fund.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1562.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50301(a) 46 App.:1241a (1st sentence). June 2, 1951, ch. 121 (pars. under heading "Vessel Operations Revolving Fund"), 65 Stat. 59; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(128), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 165; Pub. L. 108–271, §8(b), July 7, 2004, 118 Stat. 814.
50301(b) 46 App.:1241a (2d sentence words before 2d proviso).
50301(c) 46 App.:1241a (2d sentence 2d proviso).
50301(d) 46 App.:1241a (2d sentence last proviso).
50301(e) 46 App.:1241a (last sentence).
50301(f) 46 App.:1241b. June 20, 1956, ch. 415, title I, §101 (4th complete par. on p. 319), 70 Stat. 319; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(129), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 165.
  46 App.:1241b note.
50301(g) 46 App.:1241c. Aug. 1, 1956, ch. 846, 70 Stat. 897; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(130), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 165.

In subsection (c), the words "Director of the Office of Management and Budget" are substituted for "Bureau of the Budget" in the Act of June 2, 1951 (ch. 121, 65 Stat. 59), because of sections 101 and 102 of Reorganization Plan No. 2 of 1970 (5 App. U.S.C.) and 31 U.S.C. ch. 5. The words "for the purposes of that appropriation" are omitted for clarity and for consistency in the subsection.

In subsection (d), the words "notwithstanding any other provisions of law" and "and consolidated with" are omitted as unnecessary.

In subsection (e), in paragraph (1), the words "Comptroller General" are substituted for "Government Accountability Office" for consistency in the revised title. Paragraph (3) is substituted for "(except in cases where section 1212 of this Appendix is applicable)" because section 1212 applies to all vessels under a construction-differential subsidy contract.

In subsection (f), the words "On and after June 20, 1956", and the last proviso in the 4th complete par. at 70 Stat. 319 (46 App. U.S.C. 1241b note), are omitted as obsolete.

In subsection (g), the words "beginning July 1, 1956" and "after July 1, 1956" are omitted as obsolete.

References in Text

Sections 1(a) and (c), 3(c), and 4 of the Act of March 24, 1943 (50 App. U.S.C. 1291(a), (c), 1293(c), 1294), referred to in subsec. (b), are sections 1(a) and (c), 3(c), and 4 of act Mar. 24, 1943, ch. 26, 57 Stat. 45, 47, 49, 51, which were formerly classified to sections 1291(a), (c), 1293(c), and 1294 of the former Appendix to Title 50, War and National Defense, prior to editorial reclassification as sections 4701(a), (c), 4703(c), and 4704, respectively, of Title 50.

1 See References in Text note below.

§50302. Port development

(a) General Requirements.—With the objective of promoting, encouraging, and developing ports and transportation facilities in connection with water commerce over which the Secretary of Transportation has jurisdiction, the Secretary, in cooperation with the Secretary of the Army, shall—

(1) investigate territorial regions and zones tributary to ports, taking into consideration the economies of transportation by rail, water, and highway and the natural direction of the flow of commerce;

(2) investigate the causes of congestion of commerce at ports and applicable remedies;

(3) investigate the subject of water terminals, including the necessary docks, warehouses, and equipment, to devise and suggest the types most appropriate for different locations and for the most expeditious and economical transfer or interchange of passengers or property between water carriers and rail carriers;

(4) consult with communities on the appropriate location and plan of construction of wharves, piers, and water terminals;

(5) investigate the practicability and advantages of harbor, river, and port improvements in connection with foreign and coastwise trade; and

(6) investigate any other matter that may tend to promote and encourage the use by vessels of ports adequate to care for the freight that naturally would pass through those ports.


(b) Submission of Findings to Surface Transportation Board.—After an investigation under subsection (a), if the Secretary of Transportation believes that the rates or practices of a rail carrier subject to the jurisdiction of the Surface Transportation Board are detrimental to the objective specified in subsection (a), or that new rates or practices, new or additional port terminal facilities, or affirmative action by a rail carrier is necessary to promote that objective, the Secretary may submit findings to the Board for action the Board considers appropriate under existing law.

(c) Port and Intermodal Improvement Program.—

(1) General authority.—Subject to the availability of appropriations, the Secretary of Transportation shall make grants, on a competitive basis, to eligible applicants to assist in funding eligible projects for the purpose of improving the safety, efficiency, or reliability of the movement of goods through ports and intermodal connections to ports.

(2) Eligible applicant.—The Secretary may make a grant under this subsection to the following:

(A) A State.

(B) A political subdivision of a State, or a local government.

(C) A public agency or publicly chartered authority established by 1 or more States.

(D) A special purpose district with a transportation function.

(E) An Indian Tribe (as defined in section 4 of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance Act (25 U.S.C. 5304), without regard to capitalization), or a consortium of Indian Tribes.

(F) A multistate or multijurisdictional group of entities described in this paragraph.

(G) A lead entity described in subparagraph (A), (B), (C), (D), (E), or (F) jointly with a private entity or group of private entities.


(3) Eligible projects.—The Secretary may make a grant under this subsection—

(A) for a project, or package of projects, that—

(i) is either—

(I) within the boundary of a port; or

(II) outside the boundary of a port, but is directly related to port operations or to an intermodal connection to a port; and


(ii) will be used to improve the safety, efficiency, or reliability of—

(I) the loading and unloading of goods at the port, such as for marine terminal equipment;

(II) the movement of goods into, out of, around, or within a port, such as for highway or rail infrastructure, intermodal facilities, freight intelligent transportation systems, and digital infrastructure systems; or

(III) environmental mitigation measures and operational improvements directly related to enhancing the efficiency of ports and intermodal connections to ports; or


(B) notwithstanding paragraph (6)(A)(v), to provide financial assistance to 1 or more projects under subparagraph (A) for development phase activities, including planning, feasibility analysis, revenue forecasting, environmental review, permitting, and preliminary engineering and design work.


(4) Prohibited uses.—A grant award under this subsection may not be used—

(A) to finance or refinance the construction, reconstruction, reconditioning, or purchase of a vessel that is eligible for such assistance under chapter 537, unless the Secretary determines such vessel—

(i) is necessary for a project described in paragraph (3)(A)(ii)(III) of this subsection; and

(ii) is not receiving assistance under chapter 537; or


(B) for any project within a small shipyard (as defined in section 54101).


(5) Applications and process.—

(A) Applications.—To be eligible for a grant under this subsection, an eligible applicant shall submit to the Secretary an application in such form, at such time, and containing such information as the Secretary considers appropriate.

(B) Solicitation process.—Not later than 60 days after the date that amounts are made available for grants under this subsection for a fiscal year, the Secretary shall solicit grant applications for eligible projects in accordance with this subsection.


(6) Project selection criteria.—

(A) In general.—The Secretary may select a project described in paragraph (3) for funding under this subsection if the Secretary determines that—

(i) the project improves the safety, efficiency, or reliability of the movement of goods through a port or intermodal connection to a port;

(ii) the project is cost effective;

(iii) the eligible applicant has authority to carry out the project;

(iv) the eligible applicant has sufficient funding available to meet the matching requirements under paragraph (8);

(v) the project will be completed without unreasonable delay; and

(vi) the project cannot be easily and efficiently completed without Federal funding or financial assistance available to the project sponsor.


(B) Additional considerations.—In selecting projects described in paragraph (3) for funding under this subsection, the Secretary shall give substantial weight to—

(i) the utilization of non-Federal contributions; and

(ii) the net benefits of the funds awarded under this subsection, considering the cost-benefit analysis of the project, as applicable.


(C) Small projects.—The Secretary may waive the cost-benefit analysis under subparagraph (A)(ii), and establish a simplified, alternative basis for determining whether a project is cost effective, for a small project described in paragraph (7)(B).


(7) Allocation of funds.—

(A) Geographic distribution.—Not more than 25 percent of the amounts made available for grants under this subsection for a fiscal year may be used to make grants for projects in any 1 State.

(B) Small projects.—The Secretary shall reserve 25 percent of the amounts made available for grants under this subsection each fiscal year to make grants for eligible projects described in paragraph (3)(A) that request the lesser of—

(i) 10 percent of the amounts made available for grants under this subsection for a fiscal year; or

(ii) $10,000,000.


(C) Development phase activities.—Not more than 10 percent of the amounts made available for grants under this subsection for a fiscal year may be used to make grants for development phase activities under paragraph (3)(B).


(8) Federal share of total project costs.—

(A) Total project costs.—To be eligible for a grant under this subsection, an eligible applicant shall submit to the Secretary an estimate of the total costs of a project under this subsection based on the best available information, including any available engineering studies, studies of economic feasibility, environmental analyses, and information on the expected use of equipment or facilities.

(B) Federal share.—

(i) In general.—Except as provided in clause (ii), the Federal share of the total costs of a project under this subsection shall not exceed 80 percent.

(ii) Rural areas.—The Secretary may increase the Federal share of costs above 80 percent for a project located in a rural area.


(9) Procedural safeguards.—The Secretary shall issue guidelines to establish appropriate accounting, reporting, and review procedures to ensure that—

(A) grant funds are used for the purposes for which those funds were made available;

(B) each grantee properly accounts for all expenditures of grant funds; and

(C) grant funds not used for such purposes and amounts not obligated or expended are returned.


(10) Grant conditions.—

(A) In general.—The Secretary shall require as a condition of making a grant under this subsection that a grantee—

(i) maintain such records as the Secretary considers necessary;

(ii) make the records described in clause (i) available for review and audit by the Secretary; and

(iii) periodically report to the Secretary such information as the Secretary considers necessary to assess progress.


(B) Additional requirement.—The Secretary shall apply the same requirements of section 117(k) of title 23, United States Code, to a port project assisted in whole or in part under this section as the Secretary does a port-related freight project under section 117 of title 23, United States Code.

(C) Construction, repair, or alteration of vessels.—With regard to the construction, repair, or alteration of vessels, the same requirements of section 117(k) of title 23, United States Code, shall apply regardless of whether the location of contract performance is known when bids for such work are solicited.


(11) Administration.—

(A) Administrative and oversight costs.—The Secretary may retain not more than 2 percent of the amounts appropriated for each fiscal year under this subsection for the administrative and oversight costs incurred by the Secretary to carry out this subsection.

(B) Availability.—

(i) In general.—Amounts appropriated for carrying out this subsection shall remain available until expended.

(ii) Unexpended funds.—Amounts awarded as a grant under this subsection that are not expended by the grantee during the 5-year period following the date of the award shall remain available to the Secretary for use for grants under this subsection in a subsequent fiscal year.


(12) Definitions.—In this subsection:

(A) Appropriate committees of congress.—The term "appropriate committees of Congress" means—

(i) the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate; and

(ii) the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives.


(B) Port.—The term "port" includes—

(i) any port on the navigable waters of the United States; and

(ii) any harbor, marine terminal, or other shore side facility used principally for the movement of goods on inland waters.


(C) Project.—The term "project" includes construction, reconstruction, environmental rehabilitation, acquisition of property, including land related to the project and improvements to the land, equipment acquisition, and operational improvements.

(D) Rural area.—The term "rural area" means an area that is outside an urbanized area.


(d) Additional Authority of the Secretary.—In carrying out this section, the Secretary may—

(1) coordinate with other Federal agencies to expedite the process established under the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (42 U.S.C. 4321 et seq.) for the improvement of port facilities to improve the efficiency of the transportation system, to increase port security, or to provide greater access to port facilities;

(2) seek to coordinate all reviews or requirements with appropriate Federal, State, and local agencies; and

(3) in addition to any financial assistance provided under subsection (c), provide such technical assistance to port authorities or commissions or their subdivisions and agents.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1564; Pub. L. 111–84, div. C, title XXXV, §3512, Oct. 28, 2009, 123 Stat. 2722; Pub. L. 113–66, div. C, title XXXV, §3505(b), Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 1086; Pub. L. 116–92, div. C, title XXXV, §3514(b), Dec. 20, 2019, 133 Stat. 1980.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50302(a) 46 App.:867 (words before proviso). June 5, 1920, ch. 250, §8, 41 Stat. 992; Exec. Order No. 6166, June 10, 1933, §12; June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title II, §204, title IX, §904, 49 Stat. 1987, 2016; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(40), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 156; Pub. L. 104–88, §321(1), Dec. 29, 1995, 109 Stat. 949.
50302(b) 46 App.:867 (proviso).

In subsection (a), before paragraph (1), the words "Secretary of the Army" are substituted for "Secretary of War" in section 8 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 992) because of section 205(a) of the National Security Act of 1947 (ch. 343, 61 Stat. 501). See 10 U.S.C. 3011 et seq. In paragraph (3), the words "apparatus" and "appliances" are omitted as unnecessary. In paragraph (4), the words "consult with" are substituted for "advise with" as being more grammatical.

In subsection (b), the words "rates or practices" are substituted for "rates, charges, rules, or regulations" for consistency in the revised title and with other titles of the United States Code.

References in Text

The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969, referred to in subsec. (d)(1), is Pub. L. 91–190, Jan. 1, 1970, 83 Stat. 852, which is classified generally to chapter 55 (§4321 et seq.) of Title 42, The Public Health and Welfare. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Short Title note set out under section 4321 of Title 42 and Tables.

Amendments

2019—Subsecs. (c), (d). Pub. L. 116–92 added subsecs. (c) and (d) and struck out former subsec. (c), which established and set out parameters for a port infrastructure development program.

2013—Subsec. (c)(2)(D). Pub. L. 113–66 inserted "and financial assistance, including grants," after "technical assistance".

2009—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 111–84 added subsec. (c).

Savings Clause

Pub. L. 116–92, div. C, title XXXV, §3514(c), Dec. 20, 2019, 133 Stat. 1984, provided that:

"A repeal made by subsection (b) of this section [amending this section] shall not affect amounts apportioned or allocated before the effective date of the repeal. Such apportioned or allocated funds shall continue to be subject to the requirements to which the funds were subject under—

"(1) section 50302(c) of title 46, United States Code, as in effect on the day before the date of enactment of this title [Dec. 20, 2019];

"(2) section 9008 of the SAFETEA-LU Act (Public Law 109–59; 119 Stat. 1926);

"(3) section 10205 of the SAFETEA-LU Act (Public Law 109–59; 119 Stat. 1934); and

"(4) section 3512 of the Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2009 (48 U.S.C. 1421r)."

Strategic Seaports

Pub. L. 113–66, div. C, title XXXV, §3505(a), Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 1086, provided that:

"(1) In general.—Under the port infrastructure development program established under section 50302(c) of title 46, United States Code, the Maritime Administrator, in consultation with the Secretary of Defense, may give priority to providing funding to strategic seaports in support of national security requirements.

"(2) Strategic seaport defined.—In this subsection the term 'strategic seaport' means a military port or and [sic] commercial port that is subject to a port planning order or Basic Ordering Agreement (or both) that is projected to be used for the deployment of forces and shipment of ammunition or sustainment supplies in support of military operations."

§50303. Operating property and extending term of notes

(a) General Authority.—The Secretary of Transportation may—

(1) operate or lease docks, wharves, piers, vessels, or real property under the Secretary's control, except that the prior consent of the Secretary of Defense for such use shall be required with respect to any vessel in the Ready Reserve Force or in the National Defense Reserve Fleet which is maintained in a retention status for the Department of Defense; and

(2) make extensions and accept renewals of—

(A) promissory notes and other evidences of indebtedness on property; and

(B) mortgages and other contracts securing the property.


(b) Terms of Transactions.—A transaction under subsection (a) shall be on terms the Secretary considers necessary to carry out the purposes of this subtitle, but consistent with sound business practice.

(c) Availability of Amounts.—Amounts received by the Secretary from a transaction under this section are available for expenditure by the Secretary as provided in this subtitle.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1564; Pub. L. 110–181, div. C, title XXXV, §3512, Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 594.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50303 46 App.:1112. June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title II, §202, 49 Stat. 1986; Aug. 26, 1937, ch. 822, §1, 50 Stat. 839; June 23, 1938, ch. 600, §1, 52 Stat. 953; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(60), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 158.

In subsection (a), the words "Notwithstanding any other provision of law" are omitted as unnecessary. In paragraph (1), the word "lands" is omitted as included in "real property". In paragraph (2)(A), the word "promissory" is added for clarity. The words "hereby transferred", referring to the transfer under the first sentence of section 202 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1936 (repealed by section 12(60)(A) of Public Law 97–31), are omitted as obsolete.

Subsection (b) is substituted for "in accordance with good business methods and on such terms and conditions as he determines to effectuate the policy of this chapter" and "upon such terms and conditions as he may prescribe in accordance with sound business practice" for consistency and to eliminate unnecessary words.

Amendments

2008—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 110–181 inserted "vessels," after "piers," and substituted "control, except that the prior consent of the Secretary of Defense for such use shall be required with respect to any vessel in the Ready Reserve Force or in the National Defense Reserve Fleet which is maintained in a retention status for the Department of Defense;" for "control;".

§50304. Sale and transfer of property

(a) Authority To Sell.—The Secretary of Transportation may sell property (other than vessels transferred under section 4 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 990)) on terms the Secretary considers appropriate.

(b) Transfers From Military to Civilian Control.—When the President considers it in the interest of the United States, the President may transfer to the Secretary of Transportation possession and control of property described in the second paragraph of section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994), as originally enacted, that is possessed and controlled by the Secretary of a military department.

(c) Transfers From Civilian to Military Control.—When the President considers it necessary, the President by executive order may transfer to the Secretary of a military department possession and control of property described in section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994), as originally enacted, that is possessed and controlled by the Secretary of Transportation. The President's order shall state the need for the transfer and the period of the need. When the President decides that the need has ended, the possession and control shall revert to the Secretary of Transportation. The property may not be sold except as provided by law.

(d) Vessel Charters to Other Departments.—On a reimbursable or nonreimbursable basis, as determined by the Secretary of Transportation, the Secretary may charter or otherwise make available a vessel under the jurisdiction of the Secretary to any other department, upon the request by the Secretary of the Department that receives the vessel. The prior consent of the Secretary of Defense for such use shall be required with respect to any vessel in the Ready Reserve Force or in the National Defense Reserve Fleet which is maintained in a retention status for the Department of Defense.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1565; Pub. L. 110–181, div. C, title XXXV, §3515, Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 595.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50304(a) 46 App.:872. June 5, 1920, ch. 250, §§13, 17, 41 Stat. 993, 994; Exec. Order No. 6166, June 10, 1933, §12; June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title II, §204, title IX, §904, 49 Stat. 1987, 2016; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(44), (45), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 157.
50304(b) 46 App.:875 (1st par.).
50304(c) 46 App.:875 (last par.).

In subsections (b) and (c), the words "property described in the second paragraph of section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994), as originally enacted" are substituted for "such other docks, piers, warehouses, wharves and terminal equipment and facilities or parts thereof, including all leasehold easements, rights of way, riparian rights and other rights, estates or interests therein or appurtenant thereto which were acquired . . . for military or naval purposes during the war emergency", and the words "property described in section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994), as originally enacted" are substituted for "property taken over by or transferred to . . . under this section", because the first paragraph of section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920, was repealed in 1981 and reference to that paragraph is necessary for a complete understanding of these provisions. The words "Secretary of a military department" are substituted for "War Department or the Navy Department" and "Department of the Army, Department of the Air Force, or Department of the Navy" for consistency with other titles of the United States Code. For redesignation of the Department of War to the Department of the Army, and for transfer of certain functions to newly established Department of the Air Force, see sections 205(a) and 207(a) and (f) of the National Security Act of 1947 (ch. 343, 61 Stat. 501, 502, 503).

In subsection (b), the words "possessed and controlled by" are substituted for "acquired by" for clarity and for consistency in the section. The word "best" is omitted as unnecessary.

References in Text

Section 4 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920, referred to in subsec. (a), is section 4 of act June 5, 1920, ch. 250, 41 Stat. 990, which was classified to section 863 of former Title 46, Shipping, and was repealed by Pub. L. 100–710, title II, §202(4), Nov. 23, 1988, 102 Stat. 4753.

Section 17 of the Merchant Marine Act, 1920 (ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994), as originally enacted, referred to in subsecs. (b) and (c), is section 17 of act June 5, 1920, ch. 250, 41 Stat. 994, which was classified to section 875 of the former Appendix to this title, was subsequently amended, and as amended, was repealed and restated in subsecs. (b) and (c) of this section by Pub. L. 109–304, §§8(b), 19, Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1556, 1710.

Amendments

2008—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 110–181 added subsec. (d).

§50305. Appointment of trustee or receiver and operation of vessels

(a) Appointment of Trustees and Receivers.—

(1) Appointment of secretary.—In a proceeding in a court of the United States in which a trustee or receiver may be appointed for a corporation operating a vessel of United States registry between the United States and a foreign country, on which the United States Government holds a mortgage, the court may appoint the Secretary of Transportation as the sole trustee or receiver (subject to the direction of the court) if—

(A) the court finds that the appointment will—

(i) inure to the advantage of the estate and the parties in interest; and

(ii) tend to carry out the purposes of this subtitle; and


(B) the Secretary expressly consents to the appointment.


(2) Appointment of other person.—The appointment of another person as trustee or receiver without a hearing becomes effective when ratified by the Secretary, but the Secretary may demand a hearing.


(b) Operation of Vessels.—

(1) In general.—If the court is unwilling to allow the trustee or receiver to operate the vessel in foreign commerce without financial aid from the Government pending termination of the proceeding, and the Secretary certifies to the court that the continued operation of the vessel is essential to the foreign commerce of the United States and is reasonably calculated to carry out the purposes of this subtitle, the court may allow the Secretary to operate the vessel, either directly or through a managing agent or operator employed by the Secretary. The Secretary must agree to comply with terms imposed by the court sufficient to protect the parties in interest. The Secretary also must agree to pay all operating losses resulting from the operation. The operation shall be for the account of the trustee or receiver.

(2) Payment of operating losses and other amounts.—The Secretary has no claim against the corporation, its estate, or its assets for operating losses paid by the Secretary, but the Secretary may pay amounts for depreciation the Secretary considers reasonable and other amounts the court considers just. The payment of operating losses and the other amounts and compliance with terms imposed by the court shall be in satisfaction of any claim against the Secretary resulting from the operation of the vessel.

(3) Deemed operation by government.—A vessel operated by the Secretary under this subsection is deemed to be a vessel operated by the United States under chapter 309 of this title.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1565.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50305 46 App.:1247. June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title IX, §908, as added Pub. L. 95–598, title III, §334, Nov. 6, 1978, 92 Stat. 2680; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(134), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 165.

In subsection (a)(1), before subparagraph (A), the words "Notwithstanding any other provision of law" and "bankruptcy, equity, or admiralty" are omitted as unnecessary.

In subsection (a)(2), the words "but the Secretary may demand a hearing" are substituted for "unless the Secretary shall deem a hearing necessary" for clarity.

In subsection (b)(1), the words "subject to the orders of the court" and "comply with the terms imposed by the court" are omitted as unnecessary.

In subsection (b)(2), the words "operating losses paid by the Secretary" are substituted for "the amount of such payments" for clarity.

In subsection (b)(3), the words "vessel operated by the United States" are substituted for "vessel of the United States" for clarity and consistency with chapter 309.

§50306. Requiring testimony and records in investigations

(a) In General.—In conducting an investigation that the Secretary of Transportation considers necessary and proper to carry out this subtitle, the Secretary may administer oaths, take evidence, and subpoena persons to testify and produce documents relevant to the matter under investigation. Persons may be required to attend or produce documents from any place in the United States at any designated place of hearing.

(b) Fees and Mileage.—Persons subpoenaed by the Secretary under subsection (a) shall be paid the same fees and mileage paid to witnesses in the courts of the United States.

(c) Enforcement of Subpoenas.—If a person disobeys a subpoena issued under subsection (a), the Secretary may seek an order enforcing the subpoena from the district court of the United States for the district in which the person resides or does business. Process may be served in the judicial district in which the person resides or is found. The court may issue an order to obey the subpoena and punish a refusal to obey as a contempt of court.

(Pub. L. 109–304, §8(b), Oct. 6, 2006, 120 Stat. 1566.)

Historical and Revision Notes
Revised

Section

Source (U.S. Code)Source (Statutes at Large)
50306 46 App.:1124. June 29, 1936, ch. 858, title II, §214, 49 Stat. 1991; June 23, 1938, ch. 600, §3, 52 Stat. 954; Pub. L. 91–452, title II, §241, Oct. 15, 1970, 84 Stat. 930; Pub. L. 97–31, §12(72), Aug. 6, 1981, 95 Stat. 159; Pub. L. 98–237, §20(a), Mar. 20, 1984, 98 Stat. 89; Pub. L. 98–595, §2, Oct. 30, 1984, 98 Stat. 3132.

In subsection (a), the word "affirmations" is omitted as unnecessary because of the definition of "oath" in 1 U.S.C. 1. The words "or any territory, district, or possession thereof" are omitted as unnecessary because of the definition of "United States" in chapter 1 of the revised title.

Subsection (c) is substituted for the source provision to eliminate unnecessary words.

§50307. Maritime environmental and technical assistance program

(a) In General.—The Secretary of Transportation, acting through the Maritime Administrator, shall engage in the study, research, development, assessment, and deployment of emerging marine technologies and practices related to the marine transportation system through the use of public vessels under the control of the Maritime Administration or private vessels under United States registry, and through partnerships and cooperative efforts with academic, public, private, and nongovernmental entities and facilities.

(b) Components.—Under this section, the Secretary of Transportation shall identify, study, evaluate, test, demonstrate, or improve emerging marine technologies and practices to improve—

(1) environmental performance to meet United States Federal and international standards and guidelines, including—

(A) reducing air emissions, water emissions, or other ship discharges;

(B) increasing fuel economy or the use of alternative fuels and alternative energy (including the use of shore power); or

(C) controlling aquatic invasive species; or

(D) reducing propeller cavitation; and


(2) the efficiency and safety of domestic maritime industries.


(c) Coordination.—Coordination under subsection (b)(2) may include—

(1) activities that are associated with the development or approval of validation and testing regimes; and

(2) certification or validation of emerging technologies or practices that demonstrate significant environmental or other benefits to domestic maritime industries.


(d) Assistance.—The Secretary of Transportation may accept gifts, or enter into cooperative agreements, contracts, or other agreements with academic, public, private, and nongovernmental entities and facilities to carry out the activities authorized under subsection (a).

(e) Limitations on the Use of Funds.—Not more than three percent of the funds appropriated to carry out this section may be used for administrative purposes.

(Added Pub. L. 112–213, title IV, §403(a), Dec. 20, 2012, 126 Stat. 1569; amended Pub. L. 116–92, div. C, title XXXV, §3503, Dec. 20, 2019, 133 Stat. 1969.)

Amendments

2019—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 116–92, §3503(1), substituted "The Secretary of Transportation, acting through the Maritime Administrator, shall engage in the study" for "The Secretary of Transportation may engage in the environmental study".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 116–92, §3503(2), in introductory provisions of par. (1), substituted "shall identify, study, evaluate, test, demonstrate, or improve emerging marine technologies and practices to improve—" for "may—" and "environmental performance to meet United States Federal and international standards and guidelines, including—" for "(1) identify, study, evaluate, test, demonstrate, or improve emerging marine technologies and practices that are likely to achieve environmental improvements by—", in subpar. (C) of par. (1), substituted "species; or" for "species; and", added subpar. (D) of par. (1), and, in par. (2), substituted "the efficiency and safety of domestic maritime industries." for "coordinate with the Environmental Protection Agency, the Coast Guard, and other Federal, State, local, or tribal agencies, as appropriate."

Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 116–92, §3503(3), substituted "or other benefits to domestic maritime industries" for "benefits".

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 116–92, §3503(4), added subsec. (e).