The American Trucking Associations’ Moving & Storage Conference has formally launched, with the election of a board of directors, establishment of official bylaws, and the forming of seven different committees and working groups within the conference.
ATA has also announced the launch of several programs that will serve conference members as well as consumers of the moving and storage industry.
In August, the American Moving and Storage Association announced it would join ATA as part of two newly created groups: the Moving & Storage Conference and the Moving & Storage Council.
The mission of the Moving & Storage Conference will be to advocate on the industry’s behalf at the state and federal levels, and within the ATA Federation, on legislative and regulatory issues affecting movers. It becomes the fifth sector-specific conference under ATA, alongside the Agricultural and Food Transporters, Automobile Carriers, Government Freight, and Intermodal Motor Carriers Conferences.
“In joining American Trucking Associations, the moving and storage industry gains an incredibly powerful platform to advocate for government policies that will help sustain and grow our businesses,” said Marc Rogers, the president and CEO of UniGroup, who was elected in October to lead the conference as its first chair for a two-year term.
“This vital conference within the ATA Federation—consisting of large van lines, independent movers, state moving associations, agents, suppliers and everything in-between—will work tirelessly to advance the interests of our members and amplify the voice of one unified trucking industry working together to move America forward,” said Rogers.
Members of the conference recently decided on the formation of seven committees and working groups, each dedicated to advocating on specific policy areas on behalf of the industry. They are the:
- Government Affairs Committee;
- Government Traffic Committee;
- Independent Movers Committee;
- Legal Advisory Council;
- Safety Working Group;
- Specialty and High Value Movers Working Group; and the
- Supplier Committee.
ATA has also created several programs available to its Moving & Storage Conference members as well as consumers, including the Dispute Settlement Program for arbitration, Tariff 400NG for military domestic personal property moves, and BOC-3 for acquiring agents of process.
- ATA Dispute Settlement Program. Conference members will be covered by ATA’s new arbitration program. Federal regulations require movers offer consumers an arbitration program to assist in resolving disputes about loss and/or damage claims, disputes involving charges claims and charges collected upon delivery for interstate moves. The arbitration program was designed as a less expensive alternative for consumers than taking legal recourse as a means to resolve a dispute between you the consumer and your mover.
- ATA’s Agents of Process Program. Conference members will have their BOC-3 filing requirements covered by ATA’s network of agents across the country. FMCSA regulations require each interstate motor carrier to designate an agent of process in each state as a condition of being granted and maintaining operating authority. The agent acts on the mover’s behalf to receive notice of any legal actions that may be filed against it vis-à-vis the interstate shipments that it transports to, from or via that state.
- ATA’s 400NG Tariff. For a fee, Conference members can calculate the total cost of individual shipments and associated services for all military domestic personal property moves (except Hawaii) with ATA’s 400NG software. Developed for the Defense Department’s DP3 program, the 400NG tariff is the essential guide for movers handling military DP3 shipments.
ATA will also be offering training and certification programs for professionals working in the moving and storage industry, as well as ProMover—a consumer protection program that certifies moving and storage companies. Through the Find A ProMover referral service, consumers can search for and identify a certified moving company to serve their needs.
“There’s no corner of this economy that our industry doesn’t directly touch,” said ATA President and CEO Chris Spear. “With the addition of the Moving & Storage Conference, the reach of our ATA Federation expands even further, and the voice of America’s trucking industry grows louder and more powerful in the halls of Congress and in state houses across the country.”
In addition to the Moving & Storage Conference, in the works as a result of the AMSA/ATA deal is a Moving & Storage Council to provide training, certification and leadership programs for individuals in the moving industry.