U.S. legislators announced on December 1, 2014, bi-partisan agreement on a Coast Guard authorization bill likely to be enacted by Congress during the current ongoing lame duck session of Congress. The Coast Guard authorization, like such bills in the past, makes a number of maritime environmental, security and other policy changes affecting both the U.S. domestic maritime industry and foreign vessels entering U.S. waters in addition to making changes and updates affecting the Coast Guard directly. For example, the bill establishes a process to permit classification societies to inspect offshore support vessels, modifies the application of preference requirements reserving certain U.S. Government-impelled cargoes to U.S.-flag vessels and establishes a fund to ensure that foreign seafarers are available in the United States to serve as witnesses in environmental pollution prosecutions.