Dwelling fees at LA and Long Beach postponed for another week

Nearly three months after dwelling fees were announced for full containers that stayed in the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach for longer than six or nine days have once again postposed its implementation for another week.

The ports cited a combined decline of 45% in aging cargo on the docks since the programme was announced on October 25th, up from the 35% reduction reported a week before.

The executive directors of both ports said that they would be reassessing the implementation of the fees once again on January 17th. The fines were originally meant to be implemented from November 15th, but have been postponed week-by-week ever since then.

The policy, which was always claimed to have as its motive a deterrence rather than a raising of funds, will, if it is ever implemented see ocean carriers charged for each import container beyond six days for rail-bound containers and beyond nine days for containers scheduled to move by lorry. The plan is to charge ocean carriers a cumulative daily fee starting at $100 per container, going up by $100 a day until the container leaves the terminal.

The policy was originally only planned to remain in place for 90 days and was developed in coordination with the Biden-Harris Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force, the US Department of Transportation and multiple supply chain stakeholders. Any fees collected from dwelling cargo would be reinvested for programmes designed to enhance efficiency, accelerate cargo velocity and address congestion impacts, the ports’ executive directors said.

The Port of Los Angeles recently announced a similar fee for ocean carriers for dwelling empty export containers. That plan was set to begin on January 30th, at the discretion of the Executive Director. As of Monday January 10th the Port of Los Angeles was reporting 17,631 import containers sitting nine days or more and 66,430 empty containers at terminals and off-dock depots controlled by the port.

The Port of Long Beach on Monday reported 14,338 truck-bound containers sitting nine days or more and 782 rail-bound containers sitting six or more days.