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US shutdown: supporting the US Coast Guard

30 January 2019


The Connecticut Maritime Association brings us a message regarding the US Coast Guard after the partial US government shutdown:

In recent days, in the face of the ongoing partial government shutdown, we have reached out to the US Coast Guard, to ask where we might make a financial donation that would best support the US Coast Guard personnel during this very difficult time.  We were directed to the Coast Guard Mutual Assistance Fund, and we are glad to be able to make a donation of $20,000 to try to ease the burden on these hard working and patriotic citizens, who continue to perform their critical work each day, now without receiving their pay, the only branch of our military in such a position.

The Maritime Industry has a very unique relationship with the US Coast Guard.  We rely on the role they play in vessel safety, search and rescue at sea and inland during storms, port security, and more.  In the aftermath of catastrophic storms, our industry works hand in hand with the US Coast Guard to get the ports back up and running as quickly and efficiently as possible.  They respond to pollution incidents, seize illegal drugs, and so much more.  The Coast Guard has a mandate to facilitate the movement of commerce.  In this role, we see just how hard they work to keep ships moving.  They go to great lengths to answer our questions regarding regulatory issues, and to get ships in to port even if they might have an issue with their ballast water treatment system or their engine, for example.  We might not always love the answer we get, but we can always be certain that the US Coast Guard are giving us accurate information, and doing their best to solve problems as quickly and as efficiently as possible while complying with relevant regulatory issues.  In short, it’s fair to say that we would be unable to do our jobs without the support and dedication of our US Coast Guard.

Now it is our turn to support them, which is why we have decided to make this donation, as an organization.  It’s because of you, our members, that we are in a position to do this, so thanks to you all!

We know that there are others who would like to find a way to support the US Coast Guard as well, and so here is the website for the Coast Guard Mutual Assistance Fund for those that would like to do so:  http://www.cgmahq.org/

We know that our donation is only a drop in the bucket for the 42,000 active duty Coast Guard women and men, 6,000 Reservists, and 8,000 civilians, but we are glad to be able to do something.  More than anything, we hope that the White House and Congress find a way to resolve this situation as quickly as possible, so that the US Coast Guard personnel will no longer have to bear this financial burden.

On behalf of the CMA Board, thank you.

Regards,

Joe Gross

President, Connecticut Maritime Association