THE WEEK

THE WEEK

Ridge Says US In 'Full Compliance' With ISPS: Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said the U.S. is "in full compliance" with international security requirements that take effect July 1. Ridge acknowledged that the Coast Guard has not received security plans from all eligible vessels and terminal facilities, but a Coast Guard official said that won't prevent the U.S. from complying with the U.N.'s International Ship and Port Facility Security Code. The International Maritime Organization reported that as of mid-June, a large percentage of ships had not met the new ISPS requirements.

US Plans New Tariffs On Chinese Furniture: The Bush administration has proposed new tariffs on wooden bedroom furniture from China, the largest exporter of furniture to the U.S., after declaring that China was dumping furniture on the U.S. market at below-production costs. The tariffs range from 5 percent to 198 percent. A coalition of U.S. furniture makers and labor unions had asked for duties ranging up to 441 percent. The case is the largest anti-dumping action brought by U.S. manufacturers against Chinese competitors. Chinese imports accounted for about 20 percent of U.S. purchases of U.S. bedroom furniture in 2002.

UPS, Pilots Want Mediator: UPS and the union representing its 2,500 pilots have asked a federal mediator to help them negotiate a new contract. The company and the Independent Pilots Association have been negotiating for 22 months but remain apart on scheduling, compensation, pensions, benefits and other issues. The current contract remains in force, the company and the union said. A federal mediator helped the parties reach agreements in 1991 and 1998.

Customs Stresses Trade Facilitation: Customs and Border Protection officials sought to reassure the House Ways and Means Committee's trade subcommittee that it remains committed to trade facilitation. Some subcommittee members said they were concerned that the agency's move from the Treasury Department to the Department of Home-land Security might cause Customs' trade-facilitation work to be overtaken by anti-terrorism efforts. Customs Commissioner Robert C. Bonner outlined the agency's security efforts, and said screening high-risk cargo facilitates legitimate trade and travel. "I am personally committed, and CBP is strongly committed, to the trade-facilitation role," Bonner said.

Bill Proposes Cargo-Security Standards: A subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee adopted an amendment to require the Department of Homeland Security to establish uniform cargo-security standards. The standards would be based on results of existing federal programs. Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., sponsored the amendment. It would require the DHS to deliver to Congress a schedule for developing and implementing the standards. The amendment is part of the $32 billion DHS appropriations bill for fiscal 2005. The House approved its version of the appropriations bill after rejecting an amendment by Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., to require screening and inspection of all air cargo on passenger planes.

CN To Use New Canadian Box Terminal: Canadi-an National Railway hopes to use a new container terminal planned at Prince Rupert, British Columbia. The Prince Ru-pert Port Authority said it expects to announce within 60 days a partner in construction of the terminal. CN's chief executive, Hunter Harrison, said that if Canadian regulators approve CN's $1 billion acquisition of BC Rail, it will spend $15 million to modify its line between Prince Rupert and CN's main line west of Edmonton to handle double-stack trains.

Customs Plans Advance Rail, Air Reporting: Customs and Border Protection plans to begin advance reporting of electronic cargo manifests for railroad freight on July 12 and for air cargo a month later. Advance reporting for both modes is required under rules that Customs issued last December under the Trade Act of 2002. Advance electronic reporting for ocean cargo began almost immediately, but implementation of other modes was delayed until Customs and carriers had their systems ready. Elizabeth Durant, executive director of Customs trade programs, said advance reporting of air-cargo manifests will be phased in beginning Aug. 12, moving state by state from east to west. She said starting dates will be posted in the Federal Register.

UP Increases Pace Of Hiring: Union Pacific Corp. said it plans to hire 5,000 train-crew workers, 800 more than its previous plan, to help end delays that forced the company to turn away shipments this year. Dick Davidson, chief executive, announced the action at a transportation conference in New York. Union Pacific announced this month that its second-quarter profit would fall to as little as 60 cents a share from $1.10 a year earlier because of delays and higher fuel costs. "We are leaving business on the table that we could have moved if our service was better," Davidson said.

Bill Earmarks $1 Billion For Rail Security: Republican leaders on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee introduced legislation to provide more than $1 billion to protect railroads against terrorist attacks. The bill would require the Transportation and Homeland Security departments to establish a rail-transportation security plan that would include contingency programs to keep railroads running after a terrorist attack.

Hertwig To Head CSX Intermodal: James R. Hertwig, a longtime transportation executive, has been named president of CSX Intermodal Inc. He had been president of Landstar System Inc. Both companies are based in Jacksonville, Fla. Jim Handoush, former executive vice president of finance and administration at Landstar, was promoted to succeed Hertwig.