The Container Dwell Fee has been delayed numerous times due to progress in reducing the number of containers at the terminals — with the ports reporting Friday a 55% combined decline in aging cargo on the docks since the fee was announced.
Over the next week, port officials will monitor and reassess the fee’s implementation.
The fee was also delayed on Nov. 22, Nov. 29, Dec. 6, Dec. 13, Dec. 20, Dec. 27, Jan. 3 and Jan. 10.
The fee is one of several efforts aimed at speeding the processing of cargo at the San Pedro Port Complex to eliminate a backlog of ships trying to deliver merchandise. Port of Los Angeles officials said when the policy was announced that about 40% of import containers were idling at terminals for at least nine days.
Harbor commissions for both Long Beach and Los Angeles unanimously approved the policy on Oct. 29, to be in effect for 90 days. The Harbor Commission on Thursday voted 5-0 to extend the program through April 29.
“Since the announcement of the fee in October, import cargo lingering nine days or more has declined by 60% at the Port of Los Angeles,” Port of Los Angeles Executive Director Gene Seroka said Thursday. “We’re very pleased with the progress, which is why the fee has not been enacted. Data will continue to be monitored daily as we work with our partners to find further efficiencies.”
The fines, if implemented, will begin at $100 per container, increasing by $100 per container each day. Containers set to be transported by truck and rail will incur fines if they remain at the port for nine days or more.
Fees collected from the policy will be reinvested into programs that aim to enhance efficiency, accelerate cargo velocity and address congestion impacts.
The policy to implement fees was developed in coordination with the Biden-Harris Supply Chain Disruptions Task Force, the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Port of Long Beach and supply chain stakeholders.
On Dec. 30, the Port of Los Angeles announced an additional planned fee on carriers with empty containers that linger for at least nine days on marine terminals. That fee needs to be approved by the Los Angeles Harbor Commission, which heard a presentation on the proposed