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US Rep John Garamendi (left) stands behind MTD Exec Bd Mbr Augie Tellez, when he announced the department’s support for Garamendi’s Energizing American Shipbuilding Act in May.

U.S. Rep. John Garamendi (D-CA) received the 2018 Champion of Maritime Award from the American Maritime Partnership (AMP) on September 18. AMP, to which the MTD is a member, bestows the award annually to a member of Congress for extraordinary support and dedication to the U.S.-flag maritime industry.

Garamendi, who addressed the 2013 MTD Convention, is the sponsor of the Energizing American Shipbuilding Act before Congress, which would rebuild the American domestic shipbuilding and maritime industries by requiring a small percentage of exported crude oil and liquefied natural gas to be carried aboard U.S.-built, U.S.-flag, U.S.-crewed vessels by 2040.

First elected to Congress in 2008, Garamendi is the ranking member of the House Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation Subcommittee.

“When we think about all the issues at the forefront of American politics right now – good-paying jobs, energy independence, national security, trade and rebuilding our manufacturing sector – the American maritime industry is at the forefront of all of them,” Garamendi stated upon receiving the award at the California State University Maritime Academy.

“As a united maritime industry, we will continue to rebuild this critical sector to advance America’s national and economic security,” he added.

AMP’s includes U.S.-flag maritime unions, vessel owners and operators, shipboard and shoreside workers, shipbuilders and repair yards, equipment manufacturers and vendors, dredging and marine construction contractors, numerous maritime associations and national security organizations that all recognize a strong domestic maritime industry is critical for America’s economic, national, and homeland security, and is best supported by maintaining the Jones Act as the foundation of America’s domestic maritime policy.