The Surface Transportation Board is looking for ways to increase shipper participation in the freight classification process.

The STB recently extended antitrust immunity to the National Classification Bureau, a trade organization that assigns classes to individual items, which are then used to established rates. But the extension was granted only on the condition that it permit greater shipper participation in the classification process.
In a 1998 decision, the agency said it found merit in concerns expressed by shippers about their opportunities to participate in the classification process. At that time it said it would extend NCC's antitrust immunity only if appropriate changes were made.
NCC and the American Trucking Assns. asked for a reconsideration of the 1998 decision, which STB denied. Proposals and comments are due in writing April 11. More information is available on the STB website..