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Congress Edges Toward Highway Funding Stopgap

Congress Edges Toward Highway Funding Stopgap

Congress is inching closer to passage of a stopgap measure to prevent the Highway Trust Fund from drying up this summer. The House this week passed a $10.6 billion bill and the Senate is going to choose between a similar measure or a long-term bill.

July 16, 2014

Reaction to ELD Proposal Goes Full Circle

Reaction to ELD Proposal Goes Full Circle

UPDATED -- Comments on the proposed Electronic Logging Device mandate cover the full spectrum of reactions, from outrage and disdain at Big Brother government to applause for a sensible and long-overdue safety rule.

July 1, 2014

Revised Trust Fund Proposal Drops Truck Tax Hike

Revised Trust Fund Proposal Drops Truck Tax Hike

In an effort to prevent a shutdown of the federal transportation program, the Senate Finance Committee has drafted a proposal to keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent through the end of the year. The original version of the proposal included an increase in the heavy vehicle use tax, but that provision was dropped in deference to Republican concern about the proportion of revenue raisers to spending cuts in the proposal.

June 26, 2014

Wyden Offers Highway Trust Fund Patch

Wyden Offers Highway Trust Fund Patch

Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore., is proposing a three-month patch to keep the Highway Trust Fund solvent through the end of the year. The patch would be paid for with general funds, balanced by adjustments including raising the heavy vehicle use tax.

June 25, 2014

Senate Halts Debate on HOS Restart Provision

Senate Halts Debate on HOS Restart Provision

Partisan differences halted Senate debate on an appropriations bill that includes a suspension of the 34-hour restart provision of the hours of service rule. As the debate began, Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., introduced an amendment that would change Sen. Susan Collins’s provision calling for suspension of the restart and a study of its impact.

June 19, 2014

Another Call for Raising Fuel Taxes

Another Call for Raising Fuel Taxes

Amid warnings about a looming cutoff in highway funding, two Senators are proposing an old-fashioned fix: raise the federal fuel tax. Sens. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., and Bob Corker, R-Tenn., proposed raising gasoline and diesel taxes six cents a year for two years, then indexing them to the Consumer Price Index.

June 18, 2014

HOS Restart Fight Pending in Senate

HOS Restart Fight Pending in Senate

The effort to suspend the hours of service restart provision will come to a head on the Senate floor this week, possibly this afternoon.

June 17, 2014

No Restart Suspension in House Appropriations Bill

No Restart Suspension in House Appropriations Bill

The trucking industry effort to suspend the current 34-hour restart provision of the hours of service rule missed a gear Tuesday when the House passed an appropriations bill that does not contain such a provision.

June 11, 2014

House Amendment Would Stop FMCSA Insurance Rulemaking

House Amendment Would Stop FMCSA Insurance Rulemaking

UPDATED -- The U.S. House approved an amendment that would stop the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration from changing insurance minimums. The amendment is a long way from becoming law but it highlights opposition to the agency even considering a change in the minimums.

June 10, 2014

Funding Bill Sets Deadline for ELD Mandate: January 30, 2015

The bill that would suspend the new 34-hour restart provision of the hours of service rule also sets a deadline for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration to publish its electronic logging device mandate: January 30, 2015.

June 6, 2014

Senate Panel Votes to Suspend Hours of Service Restart Pending Study
HOS Restart in Spotlight on Capitol Hill

HOS Restart in Spotlight on Capitol Hill

Truck driver hours of service took center stage Tuesday as Senators grilled Anne Ferro, chief of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, on the new 34-hour restart provision. The exchanges during a Senate Commerce Committee hearing on the federal highway program were a prelude to a showdown Thursday on the restart.

June 4, 2014

Trucking Alliance Pushes Plan to Study 34-Hour Restart

Trucking Alliance Pushes Plan to Study 34-Hour Restart

Congress is considering a plan to study the 34-hour restart provision of the hours of service rule using data collected by electronic logs. This approach is being suggested by the Trucking Alliance and other groups to counter the effort by American Trucking Associations to have Congress cut off funds for enforcement of the restart provision.

June 2, 2014

House Leaders Propose Plan to Plug Highway Gap by Cutting Postal Services
Bill Would Set National Liability Standard for Shippers, Brokers

Bill Would Set National Liability Standard for Shippers, Brokers

Several House Republicans are proposing a national standard to protect buyers of trucking services from claims that they were negligent when selecting the carrier. The bill by Rep. John Duncan, R-Tenn., says that shippers and brokers would not be liable for negligence claims at the state level if they made sure that the carrier is registered at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, has the required insurance and does not have an unsatisfactory safety rating.

May 29, 2014