This week, the American Trucking Associations sent a letter to the Maryland Comptroller of the Treasury, challenging a Maryland credential requirement imposed on motor carriers who haul beer, wine, and liquor.

According to the ATA's State Laws Newsletter, this challenge follows one sent by ATA last month to the New Jersey Division of Alcoholic Beverage Control, concerning that state's requirement that interstate motor carrier vehicles hauling alcoholic beverages in New Jersey carry special credentials.

ATA believes both requirements are preempted by federal law - 49 U.S. Code section 14506 - which bans all credential display requirements imposed by state or local governments on interstate motor carriers, apart from a few specific exceptions not applicable to the Maryland and New Jersey regulations.

ATA has asked both states to stop enforcing their requirements immediately. Responding to ATA petitions, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration recently held that credential requirements imposed by New Jersey (that one on petroleum haulers), New York City, and Cook County, Illinois, were preempted.