Fleet Management

Immigration Reform Could Affect Truck Driver Pool

March 07, 2013

By Oliver Patton

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President Obama is making comprehensive immigration reform a major goal for his second term, and in the wake of the 2012 presidential election many Republicans are saying the time has come to reconsider their party’s hardline stance. That could play into the driver shortage.

Discussions on Capitol Hill are in early stages yet, but among the ideas being discussed is opening a way for the 11 million illegal immigrants now in the country to come out from the shadows and work legally.

President Obama’s plan, for example, would provide undocumented immigrants a legal way to earn citizenship by requiring them to pass background checks, pay taxes and a penalty, go to the back of the immigration line and learn English.

If citizenship is a step too far, politically, another idea on the table is to create a guest worker status for illegals.

Either alternative could significantly increase the number of potential truck drivers, although anyone interested in that work would have to meet FMCSA requirements for a CDL.

It’s an issue that American Trucking Associations is following with interest, said Dave Osiecki, senior vice president of policy and regulatory affairs.

Driver demographics are changing and truck fleets are asking where they’ll find the next group of qualified drivers, he said.

“ATA is watching the development of immigration reform with a view toward the impact it might have on the driver shortage,” he said. “It’s one of a number of solutions, including the veterans programs.”

Osiecki anticipates that the issue will be discussed at the ATA leadership meeting coming up in May.




  1. 1. Concerned Driver [ March 08, 2013 @ 01:35AM ]

    Documenting immigrants, or giving illegal immigrants drivers licenses in an effort to document them should not have a path that leads to a CDL until they are legal residents, or American citizens.

    Another thing, why should truckers have to be degraded to the same levels of poverty as illegal immigrants ? Trucking is a profession. Would people in any other profession like to all of a sudden have to compete with an influx of once illegal immigrants.

    If the government and the ATA are looking for a solution this won't solve it because the trucking shortage is a world wide event. The reason is the pay. No trucking company wants to admit there is a shortage, nor do they believe that trucking is hard work.

    The shortage can be fixed very simply. Pay the drivers a minimum of $25/hr to $35/hr, and equate it to about $100/k to $120/k a year. The shortage is over.

    With the older trucker population retiring, medical card self certification, and the CSA2010 rules all about to show their effects very soon the trucker shortage is going to get a whole lot bigger !

    Personally I welcome the trucker shortage. I get phone calls every single day for jobs. Finally I get the satisfaction of saying "sorry not enough money" to almost every single one. If we all start doing that instead of excepting what they offer maybe they will start to get the message.

    The whole trucking industry is about to go through some major changes. Long distance trucking will become a thing of the past. There will be more hubs opening up,and drivers will go hub to hub, work normal days, and be home every day.

  2. 2. Concerned [ March 08, 2013 @ 05:58AM ]

    I remember and article from I it was Tom Berg I may be wrong. His article told the whole truth about the drivers shortage there are plenty of CDL license holdre out there who have walked away from our industry for the simple reason being the way a lot of companies treat there people. They don't pay them a decent wage they have to sit and then don't get compensated for it and things like these are the reasons they walk away from the driving profession. I feel that there are a lot of companies out there that don't look at there drivers as a very important part of there assets. You can have all the equipment in the world but its of no use if you don't have qualified people and treat them with respect and pay them for what they do a decent wage and you'll have long term employee's that will perform a great service to your customers and the company.

  3. 3. jj [ March 08, 2013 @ 08:24AM ]

    trucks smell enough already

  4. 4. Dave Francis [ March 09, 2013 @ 10:00AM ]

    I guarantee that if every American swooped down on the nervous, mostly corrupt politicians we can get these laws passed. Fight for America now, fight against overpopulation, fight to reduce taxes that are used to supplement foreign nationals, fight to make English the only language, fight to stop the travesty of illegal alien children crowding our schools, specifically in the border states, fight for the U.S. constitution that is being bypassed by the President Obama Liberal progressives and socialist agendas, Call your politicians in Washington and at state level and demand they listen to its citizens and legal residents. That number is (202) 224-3121, for the Central Washington switchboard. When there are 23 million American jobless, while millions of illegal aliens are hired then we must speak up. You can also petition your local, state and federal Representative at the NumbersUSA website.

    Who elected these odious morons that are destroying this country?

  5. 5. Dave Francis [ March 09, 2013 @ 10:01AM ]

    Illegal Immigration must be stifled by resurrecting the 2006 Secure Fence Act, not the underfunded caricature seen in certain high density population sectors along the border, which we have been lied to about. Other laws with substance that could break the back of illegal immigration is THE SAVE ACT. Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.) introduced the SAVE Act (H.R.830) last Tuesday - a bill that would mandate E-Verify nationwide, strengthen border security, and improve interior enforcement. This must be propelled through the Congress now, along with the BIRTHRIGHT CITIZENSHIP BILL. These laws that must commence immediately as every year hundreds of billions of dollars in free education, health care and many other benefits, which has been bestowed on children of illegal parents as automatic citizenship in perpetuity; it is should be rescinded as the parents receive the advantage of cash entitlements for every child they conceive and gather your dollars. Seeing the incredulous garbage of this amendment, it must caste out, as intentional theft of our taxes and will continue forever, whereas most countries have now closed the loopholes. Only children of a U.S. citizen should be entitled to claim the privilege of citizenship. Daily, pregnant Mexican and Central American women on the verge of giving birth, make their way across the U.S. border to have their baby in an American hospital. These children become the notorious "Anchor Babies.” And then gain a foothold for the extended family, which you eventually pay for and extorted by the IRS. Once the baby is born on American soil, he or she instantly attains U.S. citizenship? Not only are the parents almost always allowed to stay and not deported, but since they have no income, the baby is eligible for welfare, (WIC)Women, Infants with children, Food Stamps, etc.--all at the expense of the great American taxpayer.

  6. 6. Dave Francis [ March 09, 2013 @ 10:02AM ]

    Don’t citizens have a say in the educational conflict, when illegal aliens are going to get pricey in state tuition, when students from other states have to pay the out of state fees. How come illegal aliens can march into hospitals with their different health problems and walk out free of any payment. Yet Americans are hounded by debt collectors forever, with patients having to carry hefty payments to cover the insurmountable arrivals in the emergency rooms with everything from the flue or contagious diseases they have brought with from third world countries. Even our Drivers Licenses are not sacred documents anymore. Why are we not surprised that many in our government are so corrupt that big business can buy their favors, so that they can hire discount labor and lower wages for the most venerable people in our country. Immigration supplies over one million people to the U.S. population annually. The roughly estimated foreign-born population in the U.S. is now 31.1 million, a record 57 percent increase since 1990. About 8-11 million of those are here illegally--a 4.5 million increase since 1990. Almost one-third of all immigration during the 1990s was illegal. It is very unwise to believe that we only have 11 million in our nation but with the possibility of Amnesty, the Border Patrol has reported a sudden increase in the illegal immigration invaders. In post-1990 immigrants and their children accounted for 61 percent of population growth during the last decade and counting.

  7. 7. Dave Francis [ March 09, 2013 @ 10:03AM ]

    Which Conservatives have turned traitor on American principles?

    Is it any surprise that Americans don’t trust their government anymore, when they use lies to get the public on their side? Can we possibly believe the majority of politicians when they flip flop over illegal alien numbers telling us that only 11 million people are here? Doesn’t it seem strange that the population figures have just fluctuated with little difference in the last 10 to 20 years? Doesn’t it seem odious that that there is no tough punishment, such felony when entering the U.S., without legal inspection? Is the legal populace going to be tricked again by those in Congress, by passing another amnesty or what they call Comprehensive reform? Are citizen voters, not non citizens going to have a say in another bombardment of illegal people, who waiting patiently to hear from Washington that another Amnesty is in the works and are ready to swiftly converge on the borders, or slyly slip by immigration officials at airline terminals as one way visitors? Are those in the House and Senate not going to inform us beforehand that whatever the populace of numbers are, that taxpayers are going to be paying out the bill of another Two Trillion (Heritage Foundation) added to the trillions spent already by the White House inhabitants. What about Social Security, Pensions and retirement they will need? Millions of illegal alien parents already here are supplementing their income, with the monthly income from their minor children smuggled or born in America, without paying one dime into the state and federal treasuries, which is paid by you? Yes! It’s true, some pay taxes, but low income people collect it all back, plus billions of dollars are stolen every year in reimbursed child tax credits, even if that child lives in another country; but up to now, the Congress has done nothing about it?


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