President Donald Trump waived federal restrictions outlined in the Jones Act on foreign ships transporting cargo to Puerto Rico. It’s a move meant to speed up assistance to the island after it was battered by Hurricane Maria.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Twitter Thursday that President Trump authorized a waiver for the little-known federal law that prohibits foreign-flagged ships from bring in goods between U.S. ports to the U.S. territory. She also said the White House was responding to a request from Puerto Rico Governor Ricardo Rossello, and that the waiver “will go into effect immediately.”
On Wednesday, President Trump said his administration was looking at a new waiver as an option, but revealed there was pressure not to act on behalf of Puerto Rico.
“We have a lot of shippers and a lot of people and a lot of people that work in the shipping industry that don’t want the Jones Act lifted,” he said.
Gov. Rossello, who has been praising President Trump for his response to Hurricane Maria, responded to the waiver on Twitter.
“Thank you @POTUS,” he tweeted.