Biden signs bill opening door for Alaska cruises to resume

National

Firefighter medic Andy Tighe snaps a photo of the breakaway plus-class cruise ship Norwegian Bliss while Captain Tracy Mettler operates a fireboat in the Tongass Narrows in Ketchikan, Alaska, on June 4, 2018. President Joe Biden signed into law Monday, May 24, 2021, legislation that opens a door for resumed cruise ship travel to Alaska after the pandemic last year scrapped sailings. (Dustin Safranek/Ketchikan Daily News via AP)

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — President Joe Biden has signed into law legislation that opens a door for resumed cruise ship travel to Alaska after the pandemic last year scrapped sailings.

The measure signed Monday will allow large cruise ships to sail directly from Washington state to Alaska without stopping in Canada.

It is intended as a temporary workaround of a longstanding federal law that requires large cruise ships bound for Alaska to stop in Canada or start trips there.

Canada, amid COVID-19 concerns, has barred cruise operations through February.

Members of Alaska’s congressional delegation pushed for the workaround.

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