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2018 0108 americans finest

Congressman Rick Larsen has applauded the findings of the U.S. Coast Guard that Dakota Creek Industries did not knowingly violate the Jones Act in the construction of the America’s Finest, clearing the way to preserve hundreds of jobs at DCI in Anacortes.

“The Coast Guard worked hard to create a thorough report absolving Dakota Creek and giving the green light to the America’s Finest vessel,” Larsen said in a news release. “The employees at Dakota Creek support a job-creating industry that strengthens national defense and fosters innovation and contributes to the maritime economy in Washington state and Alaska. I am proud to be a part of giving the hard working employees at Dakota Creek a stronger future.”

The Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2018 includes a Jones Act waiver for the 264-foot America’s Finest vessel, subject to Coast Guard review, which will provide higher performance and increased safety for the crew. The Jones Act places requirements on the amount of foreign-made steel allowed in construction of fishing vessels in an effort to promote U.S.-built and flagged vessels. Larsen has successfully included the waiver for DCI twice in related House-passed legislation.

“I appreciate the coordination with Senator Cantwell, Senator Sullivan and Rep. Don Young as we have worked non-stop to find avenues to save hundreds of jobs on the line,” said Larsen.

“This has been a very difficult and stressful two years for Dakota Creek, and the signing of this bill is a huge relief for all our employees. We now can get back to work serving our valued customers with the support of our many suppliers throughout the region,” said Dakota Creek Industries owner Mike Nelson after the legislation was approved late last year.

Photo by Kristian Uri, courtesy of Fishermen’s Finest

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