Rep. David Joyce named 2016 Great Lakes Legislator of the Year

Ohio Congressman David Joyce (R) was named a 2016 Great Lakes Legislator of the Year by the largest labor/management coalition representing shipping on America’s Fourth Sea Coast.

Great Lakes Maritime Task Force (GLMTF) annually presents the award to legislators who have promoted shipping on the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Seaway. Joyce received his award April 12 at a ceremony in Washington, D.C.

“Rep. Joyce’s deep appreciation for Great Lakes shipping stems from having two major ports in his district, Ashtabula and Conneaut,” said Thomas Curelli, President of GLMTF. “Countless family-sustaining jobs are created by the cargo that moves across the docks in Ashtabula and Conneaut.”

“Rep. Joyce has also been a tireless advocate for adequate icebreaking resources,” said Brian D. Krus, 1st Vice President of GLMTF and Senior National Assistant Vice President of American Maritime Officers. “Back in February 2015, a U.S.-flag laker bound for Conneaut became icebound for five days and the U.S. Coast Guard icebreaker dispatched to free it was unable to get the vessel moving. Its last cargo of the season had to be cancelled. Rep. Joyce knows jobs hang in the balance when cargo can’t move during the ice season.”

The dredging crisis has also had Joyce’s full attention.

“The largest vessels calling on Ashtabula and Conneaut forfeit about 270 tons of cargo for each inch of loaded draft lost to inadequate dredging,” said James H.I. Weakley, 2nd Vice President of GLMTF and President of Lake Carriers’ Association. “The efficiencies of Great Lakes shipping are the foundation of the Midwest economy and Congressman Joyce has been laser-focused on bringing more dredging dollars back to the Lakes.”

The award also recognizes Joyce’s commitment to international shipping via the St. Lawrence Seaway.

“Northern Ohio businesses have direct and efficient access to world markets because of the Seaway,” said John D. Baker, 3rd Vice President of GLMTF, and President Emeritus of the International Longshoremen’s Association Great Lakes District Council. “Imports and exports are key to the future.”

With his selection as a Great Lakes Legislator of the Year, Joyce becomes the 10th Ohio legislator to receive the award since its inception in 1998. Previous recipients are Sen. John D. Glenn (D); Rep. Louis B. Stokes (D); Rep. Steve LaTourette (R); Sen. Mike DeWine (R); Sen. George Voinovich (R); Rep. Marcy Kaptur (D); Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones (D); Rep. Betty Sutton (D); and Rep. Bob Gibbs (R).

Maritime Editorial