Over many years Ii have made a study of the Passenger Vessel Act of 1886 and have had numerous discussions with members of House of Representatives as well as Senators on the subject.
To put it in blunt terms those that are for amendbing the Act are cruise ship passengers and various coastal cities. I got this from the President of one of the "Big Four" that there is nil interest by the cruise lines for a reason that is important to their "pocketbooks:. At the present time, the foreign flagged or registered cruise line is, 50% foreign owned, under Section 883 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is exempt from paying United States corprate Income taxes.
It seems every time the subject comes up in Congress for amendeing the Act, the subject of the Federal Corporate income tax comes up. "You want to use more ports, then we will amend Section 883."
Another sticking point: U.S. flagged vessel cannot have more than 25% of the crew as foreign aliens, The Captain and top offices have to be U.S. Citizens and licensed by the U.S. "We would like to see you hire more U.S. officers and seamen.""
If you wish, you might write to the lobbying mouthpieces for the industry and they will tell you why there is nil interest in amending the act. International Council of Cruise Lines, 2111 Wilson Blvd, Arlington , Va. 22201.
Then the Maritime Unions are opposed to amending the Act.