Reader: Fix port problems, don’t send more dollars

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Dear Editor:

In reading Alan Guebert’s Nov. 25 opinion regarding the broken supply chain at U.S. ports of entry, I noted his solution was the same solution posed by many politicians — let’s throw taxpayer dollars at the perceived problem and we will magically fix the antiquated ports. 

Unfortunately, Mr. Guebert has failed to assess the ongoing and underlying problems at many major ports in the United States. 

The problems? Let me list just a few: record keeping bottlenecks that prevent ships from unloading cargo; only allowing union truckers onto docks (independent truckers not allowed) in certain ports; union negotiated rules that prohibit automation; union negotiations that continue to fight automation in order to protect union jobs; customs offices that are closed on holidays and weekends; union wage scales that make it cost-prohibitive to pay overtime and holiday pay; and requirements that trucks be of a certain age in order to access docks. 

Many of these problems can and should be fixed without more government, i.e. taxpayer, dollars. And, until these problems are addressed and resolved, spending more money to allegedly upgrade antiquated ports is a supreme waste of taxpayer dollars. 

Marge Conner
North Benton, Ohio

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