This week, Assemblymember Patrick O’Donnell, who represents parts of Long Beach, introduced legislation aimed to ease port congestion through a new governing body for the ports.
According to a release issued Wednesday, O’Donnell’s AB 531 was created to address the “growing concern among business, environmental and labor groups that the current gate management system, known as PierPASS, causes trucks to wait for hours at a time to enter the ports.”
The legislation creates the Southern California Joint Powers Authority (SCJPA), which would consist of a governing body composed by individuals from the two ports, the Cities of Los Angeles and Long Beach, and other community stakeholders and focus on ways to boost port infrastructure, decrease pollution and curb congestion.
“PierPASS is a lot like the typewriter, having once served a valuable purpose, it is now an outdated relic,” said Assemblymember O’Donnell, Chair of the Assembly Select Committee on Ports in a statement. “The neighboring Ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles are one of our greatest assets, with billions of dollars’ worth of goods passing through the gates. We have a duty to ensure they remain a competitive and environmentally-friendly fuel for California’s economy.”
A release from O’Donnell’s team blamed some of the truck wait times on the current gate system failing to modernize.
“The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach are state assets, and as such demand state intervention. In order to mitigate the impacts of increased port congestion, an overhaul of the existing gate management system is needed,” the release stated.